Artist Workshop in Tuscany, Italy

Travel Guides: Travel Fever Tours
Art Instructor:
Lynn Zimmerman
Watercolor Teacher, River Gallery School

Workshop: October 4-11, 2019 in Pienza
Pre-workshop: October 1-4, 2019 in Cortona

Info Session: March 21st 6-7pm
All are welcome to join us for a free info session at RGS to learn more about the trip and meet your tour guides and art instructor.



Watercolor Workshop in Tuscany, Italy – 2019

Join Lynn Zimmerman for an exciting workshop in Italy this autumn as she leads you through some of the loveliest parts of Tuscany. Explore and paint ancient hilltop villages and gently rolling farmland.


Your adventure can start with an optional three nights in Cortona, the lovely town made famous in the book and film "Under the Tuscan Sun." Enjoy a few days of tranquility while acclimating to the Italian pace of life. With sketchbook and camera in hand, explore Cortona's many interesting piazzas and narrow walking streets.

The actual workshop week gets underway as we head to Pienza in the Val d’Orcia. The Val d’Orcia is a UNESCO World Heritage site, recognized for its unique beauty. Pienza was built as an "ideal town" in the 15th century under the patronage of Pope Pius II. To this day, it is difficult to tell whether the town itself is more pleasing, or its lovely views across the Tuscan countryside.

Lynn will lead daily painting demonstrations and will assist students individually. We will also paint in such beautiful villages as San Quirico d’Orcia and Buonconvento. We will visit an outdoor Italian market on market day. And of course, when not painting, we’ll partake in wine tasting and sampling of the Italian cuisine.

Other activities:
Non-painting  partners and others are welcome to join our adventure enjoying the many cultural activities and additional excursions planned.

Workshop: October 4-11 2019 in Pienza, Italy
Pre-workshop: October 1-4, 2019 in Cortona, Italy

Workshop: $2700
Pre-workshop in Cortona: $490

Maximum group size: 12

Workshop History:
Read and view photos from a previous Tuscan workshop


Your Instructor

 Lynn Zimmerman, right.

Lynn Zimmerman, right.

Workshop Instructor and Mentor:
Lynn Zimmerman
Instructor, River Gallery School

Lynn finds great joy in helping her students explore and discover their artistic abilities. Her love of painting and drawing comes through as she helps her students understand how to see, how to use color, how light and shadows create forms, and how to translate all these elements into paintings. The technical aspects of painting and drawing are an important part of her instruction, but always with the goal of helping her students create the pictures they want to create.

Whether the subject matter is a hillside vineyard or a plate of cheese, Lynn helps her students see the paintings they want to make, and make the paintings they want to see. Currently, she teaches watercolor painting and book arts at River Gallery.


A sampling of Lynn Zimmerman’s Art:

The Workshop:

Demonstrations will be in watercolor but students working in gouache, oils, and other media are very welcome. Weather permitting, the daily schedule starts with a plein air lecture-demonstration. After some on-location advice, students are free to select a subject and paint on their own, while Lynn assists on an individual basis.



Cortona Pre-workshop Visit

October 1-4, 2019 in Cortona

To kick off our workshop in Tuscany, there is an optional, 3-night stay in the beautiful, hill-top town of Cortona. Cortona, of course, is the setting for Under the Tuscan Sun, written by Frances Mayes’ and later made into a successful film of the same name.


This pre-workshop stay enables you to explore another part of Tuscany, acclimate yourself to the pace of Italian life, perhaps brush up on your Italian, and overcome your jetlag in style before the formal workshop begins.

There will be no instruction during this portion of the trip, but you will be free to paint or sketch, as you like. Breakfast is at your hotel and you are free to sample the restaurants for dinner.

Also of note is Fra Angelico’s Annunciation and other works at the Diocesan Museum in Cortona.

The pre-workshop visit to Cortona is organized as follows:

  • We will meet you at the airport in Florence and see you to your hotel that we have booked for you in Cortona.

  • Tour leaders will be available during this period in case you should need assistance, but generally you will have unstructured time to explore the town or do what you like.

  • When the formal portion of the workshop begins, a van will pick you up at the hotel to transport you to Pienza.






Pienza Workshop

October 4-11 2019

Here is a day-by-day breakdown of the workshop, based in Pienza:

Workshop participants who have not participated in the pre-workshop visit to Cortona will be met at the Florence Airport. Cortona-visitors will be picked up from their hotel and everyone will proceed to Pienza where we’ll check into our workshop hotel. You will have the afternoon to settle in. A short walking tour of the town will be followed by a welcome dinner in a nearby restaurant and discussion of the week’s itinerary.

After breakfast, taken at the hotel, visit to market day in Buonconvento. Plein air painting under the guidance of your instructor in the afternoon followed by dinner.

We will paint plein air at locations around Pienza. You’ll have the choice of painting ancient buildings, courtyards or piazzas, or painting the breath-taking views outward from this hill town.

Plein air painting at locations in and around Pienza.  Optional wine tasting in late afternoon in Montalcino, home to famous Brunello wine.

Plein air painting at locations in and around Pienza.

Plein air painting in San Quirco d’Orcia followed by dinner.

Plein air painting at locations in and around Pienza. Evening art show and group critique, with instructor. Farewell dinner.

Morning departure to Florence airport.

Trip Details

Trip costs:

Cost of the workshop is $2,700

Supplement for single occupancy for Workshop: $375

Cost of pre-workshop: $490

Supplement for single occupancy for Pre-workshop: $100

Deposit required to reserve a place on the tour: $350

(Places in the workshop are limited to 12 and are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. We recommend that you reserve your place early, as Tuscany is a popular location and this workshop is expected to sell out.)

Optional pre-workshop stay in Cortona:

$450 based on double occupancy. This portion of the trip is hotel-only.  Breakfast is included at the hotel, but other meals and activities are not included.

What’s included in the cost of the trip:

Pre-workshop optional visit to Cortona:

  • Pickup at Florence airport

  • 3 nights lodging in Cortona

  • Breakfast each day

Workshop in Pienza:

  • Pickup at Florence airport or Cortona

  • Art instruction by instructor Lynn Zimmerman

  • 7 nights lodging in Pienza

  • Dinner each evening

  • Local transportation by van and driver

  • Day excursions to explore Tuscan villages

  • Optional excursions for non-painters

What’s not included:

  • Airfare

  • Lunches

  • Wine tasting

  • Admission to museums and local sites

  • Art supplies

Payment schedule

  • $350 non-refundable deposit

  • $1175 second installment (Due June 1, 2019)

  • $1175 final installment (Due August 1, 2019)

Pre-workshop add-on in Cortona: $490

Single occupancy supplement: $375

Group size:

  • Minimum: 6

  • Maximum: 12

Pre-workshop lodging, Cortona:

 Hotel Sabrina, Cortona

Hotel Sabrina, Cortona

Tour participants will stay in a 3-star hotel in an historic building near the center of the old portion of Cortona. The hotel provides easy access to all parts of the town, but it is tucked away on a quiet side street.

Workshop lodging, Pienza:


You will stay in a 3-star hotel located not far from Pienza’s historic center and a few blocks from Pienza’s cathedral and central square.


Traditional Italian breakfasts to be taken at your hotels in both Cortona and Pienza.

In Pienza the group will take 3- and 4-course dinner at restaurants in or near Pienza.

Optional day trips:

Several optional excursions will be offered during the workshop for those who might like to take a day off painting, or for non-painters who may wish to come on this trip.

End of trip add-ons (optional):

At the end of the trip, participants may opt for additional nights in Tuscany or other parts of Italy. Trains can easily take you to Rome, Milan or other points. One can often fly into Florence and out of another city for little extra cost. These trip extensions are up to trip participants to organize, but Travel Fever Tours can make recommendations on how to arrive at your desired destination. 

Info Session: March 21st 6-7pm
All are welcome to join us for a free info session at RGS to learn more about the trip and meet your tour guides and art instructor.