Review Overall Rating
This is Monica Haak from the first summer...
This is Monica Haak from the first summer session. I have a few Final favors to ask of you, but let me first say that I made more progress than I could have imagined through the International School. I can't tell you how invaluable that program was for me and I want to thank you for your unending work to organize it and keep it running smoothly. It significantly changed my painting practices. Having my own studio (which was an ideal space; I'm very grateful for the assignment I got) and the input of the faculty made me develop much better habits and I have continued to maintain a higher level of productivity since I left. I am now taking my senior seminar at Penn with John Moore. During my previous three years in college I've focused more on my philosophy major and taken the art major more lightly. This summer definitely shifted my priorities and turned my attention to MFA programs. Running the School must have required a lot of personal sacrifice on your part and I can't thank you enough for providing such a unique and formative experience.
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy I wanted to write again to thank you for...
Reviewed by Jed Appelrouth on .
I wanted to write again to thank you for everything this summer -- for arranging such a great program. Rock Solid staff, good eats. I learned so much. I need to make sure I keep painting this year, so I can begin to see all the lessons mature. It's always too much to take in in 6 weeks.
Every one of the teachers brought something distinctive -- whether their personality or their ability to communicate -- or simply their different technical approaches to painting. Something for everyone.
As a returning student -- the experience of the school was completely different from my first time there. During my first year I attended the school- I was simply trying to take in the volumes of information flowing my way from every direction regarding how to paint, how to create an image, how to really see more deeply and honestly. This time around my focus changed dramatically. This summer was all about the ideas and the inspiration behind painting, the 'why' of painting, how to make art work with real integrity. I left with an increased confidence in myself as an independent artist, an idea of the direction in which my work needs to grow, and again enough technical information to keep me busy for a few years. All in all it was a very rewarding, valuable experience.
I just wanted to say thanks and I hope the last session is a great success for you and your students. All the best to you and your family.
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy Hi Marc, I just wanted to write to tell...
Reviewed by Meghan Fleming on .
I just wanted to write to tell you what an amazing time I had during the May residency. When Martha Armstrong (she was one of my undergraduate professors) told me about the school and May residency I really just thought it would be a nice opportunity to paint for a month in Italy, but it was so much more. I think that even though I have been teaching art for the past 7 years that somehow the day to day stresses of grading, deadlines, hoping I'll get into a show, etc. all get in the way of what is important to me about painting. But my conversations with Jody, Judy, and Susana, reconnected me to what I love about painting and the actual act of painting itself. It was a profoundly positive experience for me. I feel rejuvenated both as a painter and as a teacher. So, thank you for running the school/ residency program! I think it's a really special place and I hope I'll be able to go there again.
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy I have just returned home after an additional...
Reviewed by Holly Downing on .
I have just returned home after an additional month traveling around Italy, and wanted to write to tell you how very rich and lovely my experience at Montecastello was. As soon as I left, I immediately missed going to work in my little studio everyday - I had so many more images I wanted to paint! Besides the absolute beauty and gentle nature of the town and its residents, and the surrounding landscape, it was just so wonderful to be surrounded by so many artists who were painting, and painting from observation the world around them. (I primarily painted the architecture with cast shadow shapes, and a bit of landscape; eventually I'll put some on my website.)
Jody took really good care of everyone at the residency; Judy and Susanna were great, and the residents were very nice people; but my favorite part was when the students came. They were really the most wonderful young devoted artists. I adored being around them - and their excellent teachers. Such a great group of people altogether, with pristine values about art and painting and a focus and willingness to work very hard. (Plus doing great paintings.) I enjoyed watching them stretched and expanded by being in that environment.
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy The six-week course in Montecastello is great....
Reviewed by Mee Lar Tan on .
The six-week course in Montecastello is great. It's a good course that I have been recommending to my friends, who are interested in short term painting course, to take up. I believe some of my friends (mostly in the field of Architecture or painting classes) will be interested as well. Their problem is always 'time'.
I'm glad for what I've learned and enjoyed the School very much. What I'm looking forward to at this point of time is to see how I will paint!
Anyway, I'm glad that the School exists!! and I'm so lucky to have picked it up out of the blue from the web site.
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy Looking back and more importantly looking...
Reviewed by Kathryn Sanfilippo on .
Looking back and more importantly looking at the body of work which I completed during this period, I am simply amazed. Whether it be the idyllic town of Montecastello, the majestic vistas or the inspiration setting...it all adds up to a satisfying experience. My thoughts are to return again next May.
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy Just a note to say how very much I enjoyed...
Reviewed by Maria Levinge on .
Just a note to say how very much I enjoyed my stay at the International School the company of the others there and the charms of Montecastello and the surrounding countryside which produced 21 little paintings to bring home to Ireland some I think I will work up into bigger paintings and will form part of my solo (one person) exhibition next summer a couple of the small ones will be in group shows at the end of October and just before Christmas.
Jody and Gina were just wonderful we shared some great conversations and laugh's I look forward to meeting up with them again.
It was a very, very happy time; I hope to have another visit in the future.
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy Back from Umbria! What a great experience...
Reviewed by Terry Miura on .
Back from Umbria! What a great experience it was. A whole month of drawing, painting, eating, sleeping, and not much else. I met some great people, talked about art (which I don't get to do much at home since my artist friends aren't nearby) and hung out with people from all over the world at the bar. To talk about Pontormo and be understood is something I haven't experienced since my New York days. That's ten years ago, my friends. I didn't realize I was so depraved till this residency thing. Thanks to my good friend and artist Brian who convinced me to go with him to Italy!
Montecastello is beautiful. That's a gimme. the vast distances and amazing atmospheric effects in all directions were so inspiring, I couldn't get enough of painting en plein air. In the mornings we had figure drawing sessions with our wonderful model, Andrea, who had the perfect forms for the kind of drawings I do. I'll remember to upload those, too. We had our big lunch at one o'clock each day, prepared by Iliana. The food was just great. and the company was just great. After lunch it's siesta time so everything shuts down in Montecastello. Not that there's much open during work hours-it's a tiny little hilltown (more like a village) with a population of just a few hundred people) I painted outside if the weather was cooperating, indoors if not. Sometimes took a nap or read a book. That's not being lazy, mind you. I find plein air painting so exhausting due to the fact that it demands so much concentration and focus, If I don't take a serious break after the first one, without fail the second one comes out terribly. Can't do more than two a day. Perhaps someday I'll get much better at it and it won't be so taxing on my system. yeah, right.
Anyway, we ate dinner late, and after dinner, we either had slide lectures, or hung out at the bar. Good times. I definitely want to go back again, and also I want to try residencies in other places. This was my first one, and I found I really enjoyed it. There will probably be more "sketches from travels" in the future. Not a bad way to go.
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy Marc, words cannot capture what I've experienced...
Reviewed by Aaron Swindle on .
Marc, words cannot capture what I've experienced in Monetecastello or even come remotely close to giving a vague description of the place itself. this whole trip as been like the peak of my life in that sense it gave me so much that I'll carry on forever with me. You know, priceless stuff. God bless you for starting a program like this.
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy Marc, I have now been home awhile and just...
Reviewed by Suzanne Andersen on .
Marc, I have now been home awhile and just processed all my photos. I look back on that time almost like it was a dream. I have pictures of the school, the town, the festa and go cart race, where I lived as well as that fabulous landscape. My favorites are the ones at dinner on the roof. I wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed it all and what a fabulous job you are doing. This time I was able to work with the teachers more and enjoyed meeting Martha, Barry and Ying. Dan is a legend that I learn more from and about each time I experience him. I especially wanted to say how nice Josef was. He makes a difficult job look easy and is always attentive and caring. He waited for the bus to come before he left me when I went to the airport.
At last, I got to put a face with your name and meet Olivera and Theodore. What a nice family. I am already dreaming of next year and think May would be wonderful. I will keep in touch. I know this is the first week of the new session so you are busy. Again, I loved every minute there. Thank you for creating an experience that I have not found anywhere else.
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy I have returned home safely and just wanted...
Reviewed by Trina Gordon on .
I have returned home safely and just wanted to send a quick email telling you what fabulous a time I had at the International School. It has been by far the best art school experience I have had so far!! I thought the teachers were excellent. I was especially inspired by Martha's work and think that Dan was so wonderful to let us come to his studio to paint for the landscape seminar. What a treat!! I really had a delightful time. Josef and Marija were very helpful throughout the summer - everyone thought they worked so hard and did such a great job trying to deal with everyone's various needs. They really do not receive enough praise for all of their hard work. I hope the new program is going well and the new people are getting adjusted well.
Anyway, thanks again for such a wonderful program and a delightful summer!!
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy I wanted to thank you again for an INCREDIBLE...
Reviewed by Mary C Delony on .
I wanted to thank you again for an INCREDIBLE summer. I never imagined I would be so transformed in just 6 weeks. The school and, most importantly, the teachers saved me years of struggling with technique and made me earn my right of confidence. No words could express what I learned this summer because I learned so much about art and ALL of life that it blows my mind. My art work is really starting to take on it's own in a way that I would have never imagined thanks to the International School, and a 'thanks' just isn't enough...but I guess it'll have to do for now.
I would love it more than anything to go back in the not-so-distant future :), so I'll try and stay in touch.
International School of Painting Drawing and Sculpture in Umbria, Italy A++++
Reviewed by Lorri Kehl on .
Words can not explain. Amazing program for any artist at any level. I went for two weeks in 2007 and I'm still talking about this experience. Highly recommended!