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Passion. Mother Nature. Wild Self-Expression


A Painting Workshop & Local Sightseeing Experience

Research shows that not only are vacations good for you, they lead to healthier, more productive lives, and an increased sense of well-being and happiness. Periods devoted to relaxation allow us to take a break from stifling routines, and living in the moment reminds us to make the most of each day. Our weeklong adventure combines the joys of art making with visits to scenic places, and delightful cultural encounters around town, allowing you to focus on all the things you never seem to have enough time for. Read on to learn all about workshop days - then read further to discover the plan for field trip days, out and about.


We're incredibly fortunate to meet so many interesting, kind people from all walks of life - funny how 'kindred spirits' seem to find one another without really trying. Browse through some of the many "Love Notes" we've received over the years to learn more about student experiences with us.

"My week with Yvette and Derek was beyond memorable and a treasure in every conceivable way. I am wowing all of my friends with details of my visit. Hope to return again soon."

💚 Ruth Anne Swiderski, Oceanside, California


Immerse Yourself in 3 Alternating Days of Lavish Studio Painting


Create a personal masterpiece from the ground up, applying a design-driven methodology and key painting skills. Work with a range of art materials and media,  applying principles and aesthetic considerations of good design to a personal project, highlighting form, color, and texture. Explore the art and science of color mixing, glazing, and popular textural techniques at your personal interest level and skill level.


Appropriate for the beginner to experienced painter, we strive to meet you where you are in your personal practice and stage of painting experience. This workshop is loosely patterned on a traditional Atelier model, where a professional painter works with a small number of students to train them in visual fine arts. Our meaningfully structured practicum has been developed with many different learning levels in mind, to challenge students of all backgrounds and skill levels within a single class. This enables students to focus on personal learning goals of their choice and discretion in a safe and nurturing environment, without the pressure to produce great art. Our free-form approach supports students returning again and again, to continue honing skills and general expertise as painting skills mature over time.

"Whether you're an experienced painter or just learning to paint, creating art involves thinking about a long list of decisions. While great artists will tell you their life is spent literally perfecting their craft, key skills can be mastered in isolation with practice by just about anyone."

Yvette Neumann



24 hours of art instruction and demos over 3 days, guided by a professional fine artist - the perfect mix of structured learning, critique, and experimentation.


Students receive a helpful 30 page program booklet to keep, summarizing key concepts, techniques and instructor demos presented during the course.


Class size is limited to max 8 students at a time, ensuring plenty of one-on-one time with the instructor. Our intimate setting and flexible work stations, stocked with dedicated materials for each student's personal use, offers the right balance of freedom and attention.


Catered healthy lunches and snacks, and a hosted Happy Hour social at the end of each day, provide just the right level of pampering and real human connection. That's why we pair creative expression with self-love in a supportive environment to produce the very best shared experiences.


Worried about getting your beautiful artwork home that you've so lovingly created? Wonder no more, because we are happy to package and ship it for you, either by UPS or USPS with reliable tracking. Cost of shipping is extra, but we know all the tricks of the trade when it comes to getting your treasure safely home - without breaking the bank.



All art materials needed to develop your personal masterpiece:
Level 2 (Artist Grade) and 3 (Professional Grade) acrylic paints and mediums. Sketching and practice materials. Paint apron, brushes, rags and assorted tools. Gallery quality canvas. Supplemental supplies include acrylic inks, pastels and more. (Store value $300)


Daily gourmet lunch, healthy snacks and beverages throughout the day, and two hosted Happy Hour Socials at the conclusion of days 1 and 2. We work with local restaurants to bring you healthful, locally sourced and wholesome foods. Gluten-free, vegetarian, as well as other dietary needs are no problem for us - just let us know.


We cover transportation to and from YNFA Studio daily from a central pickup point in Bellingham. Alternatively, students may also drive themselves if preferred.


Surprises await you - enjoy our studio library, meditation path, (it's a labyrinth!), organic farm's expansive garden, and feeding a bevy of beloved 4-legged friends.


Our Time Together

Each workshop session is carefully choreographed behind the scenes, so your days flow effortlessly. A high-level overview of what to expect appears below, where the emphasis is on ‘slowing your roll’. A detailed itinerary and more comprehensive information will be mailed to you with confirmed booking.

DAYS 1, 3, AND 5

These are relaxing field trip and activity days, deliberately designed for inspiration and connection, with maximum flexibility in mind. A slower pace is the goal, and depending on the number of guests, time of year, and shared interests of the group, this is where we apply a little personalization magic! A general outline of what these days look like can be found here - final itineraries are provided with a confirmed workshop booking.


Arrive at Yvette Neumann Fine Art Studio to begin work on your very own masterpiece. Divided into morning and afternoon painting sessions, the construction process will be broken down into easy, bite-sized lessons, throughout which you'll be offered invaluable prompts and exercises to support the design and composition of your work. Enjoy a tasty, catered lunch on the patio and a relaxing Happy Hour Social in the Gallery and garden at day's end.


Return to the studio to continue refining your work in AM and PM painting sessions. You'll be encouraged to experiment with tools, materials, and techniques that are demonstrated to you, as you explore methods for abstraction, composition, color theory, and more. Progress reveals a maturing work, taking form. Another catered lunch, followed by another soothing Social Hour in the gallery and garden; this is living at its best.


Finalize painting refinements on your final day, and with plenty of one-on-one help to put finishing touches on your one-of-a-kind masterpiece, complete the creative process begun on Day 1. Tips for hanging, framing, cleaning and more will be shared, along with vendor sources for materials used throughout your journey. A final intimate lunch, with the rest of the afternoon to paint to your heart's delight. Now comes the hard part - deciding where to hang your new original artwork.


3 Unforgettable Alternating Field Trip Days


Field trip days include waterfront strolls around Squalicum Harbor, the boardwalk at Taylor's Landing, and relaxed boutique shopping in the historic Fairhaven district.  Enjoy a bevy of delightful cultural encounters in and around Bellingham, including a visit to Bellingham's popular Farmer's Market - a curiosity feast worthy of inspiring painterly ideas.


Explore Mindport Exhibits, an unusual  museum of phenomena in the heart of downtown Bellingham - a place that's sure to spark your awareness and stimulate your thinking. Offering an inspiring blend of art and interactive exhibits, this thoughtfully inspired venue is a great  place to play and to observe. There's also the Spark Museum, and the Smithsonian affiliated Lightcatcher Museum to see, with their marvelous collections and touring exhibits.


Go on gentle hikes to spectacular vistas in Mt. Baker National Forest, where year-round glaciers abound. Travel to scenic Nooksack Falls, Heather Meadows, and unforgettable Picture Lake.  Indulge your senses with a gourmet picnic lunch at Artist Point - perfect for sketching and plein air painting.


Intimate hosted lunches and dinners at some of Bellingham’s finest eateries provide a relaxing backdrop for conversation, connection and social interaction. Our schedule on sightseeing days is flexible, and can be structured around accommodating the needs, activities, and specific interests of the group as they arise. By alternating days of painting and exploring, there's plenty of room for experiences to inspire your Painting Workshop days. 



Space availability for each session is limited to just 8 adventurers at a time, so we encourage you to book early. Travel Insurance helps you plan for the unpredictable, and we highly recommend you obtain policy coverage when booking a workshop or retreat adventure with us.

Refer to our Policies/Limitations page for any questions concerning your booking with us – a $250 deposit is required to hold your reservation. We will contact you about payment arrangements upon confirmation of your booking with us.

Please refer to our helpful FAQ’s for additional information about our popular art-inspired retreats.


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