Discover the magic of painting in the French Provençal countryside during a week-long oil painting workshop. Designed for both confirmed painters and beginners, Jill’s workshops focus on experiencing nature through the senses, allowing each participant to bring out his own inner poetry. Students are encouraged to see, hear, smell, taste, and feel nature, which results in an artistic expression that speaks of the mystery of the experience. Cézanne said, “Art exists…art must make us taste the eternal.”

Workshop dates

2020 — Aix-en-Provence
May 22 – 30, 2020 (CANCELED)
June 19 – 27, 2020 (CANCELED)
September 11 – 19, 2020 (CANCELED)

2020 — USA
April 7 – 8, 2020 / Atlanta, GA (CANCELED)

2021 — Aix-en-Provence
May 14 – 22, 2021 
June 25 – July 03, 2021
September 10 – 18, 2021

Note that other workshop dates can be scheduled if there is enough interest from participants (minimum 6, maximum 10).


Aix-en-Provence: $4,900
– Oil painting workshop
– Accommodation for 8 nights
– 1-2 meals/day with wine and beverages
– Transportation
– Museum entrance fees
– Art supply package

Note that that US workshop prices are variable depending on location. Click on the above link or contact me directly for more information.

The workshop a glance
This workshop focuses primarily on oil painting techniques and the creative process, and also includes a cultural dimension concentrating on Cézanne and Van Gogh. It begins with learning to mix a harmonious palette at l’Abeille, Jill’s home studio and the workshop’s headquarters for the week. After warming up with a few drawing exercises, Jill performs a demo painting, and then participants do their own painting. For the rest of the week, participants will draw and paint from nature – at the sea, in the hill towns, in the Aix market, and at the sites of the Provençal masters. Jill will coach each participant, receiving valuable guidance in the creative process. The workshop concludes with a cocktail reception and art exhibit displaying all of the works that were created during the week. It is a celebratory, festive evening in which guests are invited to view the art and celebrate the fruit of a fun and rewarding week of painting.

A personal journey
This workshop is a personal and spiritual experience, like climbing a mountain within yourself. It’s a moment to step back, to slow down and observe, and to experience the beauty and wonder in and around you.
It is truly an experience for anybody – beginners are welcome, and experienced painters too. 

Painting in Provence
Standing in fields of wheat, sunflowers or lavender of Provençe, in the fishing village of Cassis or in the flower markets of Aix, participants celebrate nature with color. The exhilarating joy of painting here, creating directly from life, the sublime fragile beauty and translucent light of Provence, will make this an unforgettable experience.

Artist’s inspiration
More than one can imagine, impressions and feelings begin to materialize on the canvas and in the artist’s heart — the stillness of the morning, mist rising from the water. Brush strokes go on the canvas. Immediacy is the key to letting go and ignoring intellect. To let the paint fly onto the canvas without thinking and calculating, to recapture the free, uncalculated, creative spirit of childhood is a way of allowing Grace to happen.

Note: Out of a great passion for Cézanne and Van Gogh and after teaching painting and drawing at the American University in Aix for 10 years, Jill has become a specialist concerning these two artists. If you have a particular interest in gaining a deeper understanding of one of these artists, by painting on the very sites where they painted, please let Jill know.

Friday – Arrival
Participants are met upon their arrival and taken to their lodgings.
Evening: Free 

Saturday – Getting your Bearings & Group Welcome Dinner
Morning: Walking tour of Aix and its open-air market
Lunch: Caumont Centre d’Art restaurant
Afternoon: Visit Cézanne’s studio
Evening: Welcome dinner at Atelier l’Abeille (Jill’s home/studio)

Sunday – Painting Begins
Morning: Study of color and learning to mix a palette, followed by drawing exercises
Lunch: Traditional Provençal fare at Atelier l’Abeille
Afternoon: Demo painting by Jill, followed by your own painting
Evening: Free

Monday – Plein Air Painting
Morning: Landscape painting
Lunch: Picnic or restaurant (weather depending)
Afternoon: Free 
Evening: Optional landscape painting at Mont Sainte Victoire

Tuesday – The Mediterranean
Morning: Painting session in Cassis
Lunch: Seaside restaurant in Cassis
Afternoon: Continued painting session in Cassis
Evening: Free

Wednesday – Painting in Sénanque, Bonnieux, Arles, Saint Rémy or Aix 
According to the season and/or group preference:
Spring/Summer – trip to Sénanque and Bonnieux – painting in the lavender and poppy fields
Fall/Winter – trip to Arles to paint Van Gogh’s motifs / trip to Château Noir and the Mont Sainte Victoire to paint Cézanne’s motifs
Lunch: Picnic or restaurant (weather depending)
Evening: Free 

Thursday – Flower Market & Sunset Painting
Morning: Painting session in the Aix flower market
Lunch: Restaurant in Aix
Afternoon: Free
Evening: Quick dinner on your own in Aix, followed by sunset painting on the hillside at Jill’s

Friday – Still Life or Garden Scene Painting, Individual Critiques, Exhibit, & Reception
Morning: Still life or garden scene at Jill’s studio with individual critiques
Lunch: Atelier l’Abeille
Afternoon: Hang paintings for exhibit & clean-up
Evening: Exhibit, cocktail reception/dinner

Note:  In general, participants will be picked up at their lodgings at 8:30am every morning and returned to their lodging in Aix after the daily activities.

Group arrival and departure dates:
Jill and her crew provide roundtrip transportation to and from your point of arrival and departure on the following dates:

2019 Workshops
May: Arrival – Friday, May 17 / Departure – Saturday, May 25
July: Arrival – Friday, July 5 / Departure – Saturday, July 13
September:  Arrival – Friday, Sept 13 / Departure – Saturday, Sept 21

2020 Workshops
May: Arrival – Friday, May 22 / Departure – Saturday, May 30
June: Arrival – Friday, June 19 / Departure – Saturday, June 27
September: Arrival – Friday, Sept 11 / Departure – Saturday, Sept 19

Flights should be booked into Marseille Provence Airport (20 minutes from Aix). You may also fly into Nice and take a bus from the airport to Aix-en-Provence (2 hours), or into Paris and take the TGV train down to Aix-en-Provence (3 hours).

During the workshop, transportation to and from your lodgings, as well as to the various paintings sites, is included in the workshop cost. Your evenings and shopping time in Aix-en-Provence will be on foot, so there is no need for a car!

Participants stay in private shared apartments (up to 3/apartment), centrally located in Aix-en-Provence within easy walking distance to all sites and meeting points. Single-occupancy apartments are available for a surcharge. Lunch and several dinners are included in the workshop (unless mentioned otherwise).

We carefully hand-pick each apartment that our participants stay in, according to their specific comfort needs and desires. All apartments we offer have a typical Provencal charm and home-like atmosphere, to provide participants with the most comfortable, relaxing and unique stay in Aix.

— supplement for single studio apartment ($400)
— supplement for single room in luxury hotel ($800)

Workshop Price: $4,900 USD per person.

This includes the oil painting workshop, accommodations for 8 nights, 1-2 meals per day with wine and beverages, round-trip airport transfer, ground transportation, museum entrance fees, and the complete art supply package. (Participants wanting to bring their own supplies, or make their own accommodation arrangements may contact Jill directly for information about pricing).

Cost breakdown:
$3,000 – Workshop, transportation & museums
$1,600 – Accommodation & meals
$300 – Art supply package

Art Supply Package
All workshop participants will be supplied with 10-12 linen canvases, drawing materials and tablet, paints, brushes, apron, gloves, easel, folding seat, parasol, palette, knife, medium cup, solvents, paint basket, and other required painting supplies.

To secure your space, a non-refundable deposit of $1,000 USD per person is required, due by February 1st.

March 1st: balance due for May and June/July workshops
April 1st: balance due for September workshops

Cancellation Policy
Cancellations on any payments made 60 or more days prior to a workshop start date will be fully refunded, less the non-refundable deposit. Cancellations made less than 60 days prior to a workshop start date will be refunded, minus a $500 cancellation fee. Cancellations on any payments made fewer than 30 days prior to a workshop start date will be refunded minus a $1,500 cancellation fee. Should Jill Steenhuis need to cancel the workshop for any reason prior to the arrival date, all deposits and payments will be fully refunded.

“The gift of art is a powerful tool to help us through this journey and my heart is full with the joy of spending that time with you.”
“I not only learned great things from the workshop about painting, but also about Life. I miss all of you, and send much love and happiness your way.”
“Jill - thank you so much for your heartfelt time, effort and passion for giving us one of the most fabulous experiences. It was a trip of a lifetime!”
“As I look into the sky or at flowers, I see them through a new lens. It is as if my eyes have been opened and what was once just a beautiful object, now is a cacophony of different colors and shapes.”
“Thank you so much for an especially complete and well-crafted workshop that created a wonderful place and time for growth, fun, and new friends.”
“I really enjoyed the workshop and hope that I have learned a lot. Very helpful were the paint mixing lessons and worth the workshop alone.”