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Book a Custom Retreat like the one we planned below!

En Plein Aire Outings, Hikes, Workshops
& Artist Retreats
Tennessee & North Carolina

“Essentially what we do 

is trounce out into the wilderness and paint our interpretation of the beauty that surrounds us,” says Childs.  “Inspiration is the key to all good painting, and getting outdoors and painting not only what we see, but merging that with how the space and experience makes us feel is key to creating excellent art.”

The Lodge at River Run Watercolor Workshop Weekend





d’Lauren’s workshops are designed to inspire a

love for the beauty that surrounds you while

helping you loosen up and paint intuitively. 

Keeping solid design in mind and exploring a

variety of techniques as Dana does during her

workshops, will aide you in your creation and

painting process.  


During “The Lodge at River Run Watercolor Workshop Weekend”, you can choose your experience - to either follow guided painting demonstrations, or merely be inspired by them and then paint your own composition en Plein Aire, all the while enjoying guidance from Dana, as she meanders the beautiful grounds connecting with each individual painter in their chosen location. 


Regardless of your experience level, you can

benefit from Dana’s expertise and experience. 

All levels welcome!



July 15-17, 2022


Upstairs is $570.00 a night and $540.00 a night

for downstairs

(two nights total, plus tax)

Coming with a friend?  Ask about room-sharing prices which are also available

First come first Serve - some rooms have two beds

Call Bobbie at (828) 260-1352 for questions regarding lodging, and Dana at (530) 306-2379 regarding the workshop.

To learn more about the Lodge at River Run go to



    - check in at 4pm

    - Mix and Mingle complete with

      horderves at 5pm

    - Dinner in Banner Elk *



    - Breakfast at the Lodge at 9am 

    - Initial Demo 10:30am

    - Plein Aire painting  

    - Lunch on own *

    - Midday Demo 1:30pm

    - Plein Aire painting 

    - Voluntary sharing time 4pm

    - Appetizers and Mingle at the Lodge 5pm

    - Dinner in Banner Elk *



    - Breakfast at Lodge  9am

    - Set up for Plein Aire

    - Check out at 11am

    - Continued Plein Aire as desired thru 2pm



*Individuals are responsible for their own expenses

Breakfast and horderves provided by Lodge, loaner supplies available during the entire weekend, for a sneak peek at the supply list email Dana at

To register call (828) 260-1352

Supply List

Preferred palette is Frank Web  -- if you want to use a white ceramic dinner plate that works as well.  Small palettes are problematic, but come in handy for in the field or backpacking, etc.

For plein aire or art hikes try to find a smaller palette that folds, and has a thumb hole in it for holding.  Or you can use a foam disposable plate and cover with saran wrap.


Paints – tubed watercolors  

(Grumbacher, Academy, Daniel Smith, Holbein or Windsor Newton’s Finest is preferred)


Permanent Rose (or Alizeron Crimson)

Ultramarine Blue

Antwerp Blue (sub = Prussian Blue)

Raw Sienna

Burnt Umber

Cadmium Yellow or New Gambouge (open it and make sure it's a bright yellow first, I use Daniel Smith of Van Gogh)


Brushes:  1-inch square sable or sablette, #8 round sable or sablette (and a #4 round if you are into detail)


140 lb cold press paper (prefer Arches, other’s ok.  Canson & Fabriano student grade is ok-I would avoid other brands personally)


Two water buckets (one large and one yogurt sized)


1 flat household sponge – (no soap)        pencils, kneaded  or Mars eraser


paper towels and tissue 


Supply rental and medium paper (student grade) available for $8, I will have Arches 140# CP on hand to sell at market value as well.   Please RESERVE rentals  IN ADVANCE OF THE CLASS


For  Plein Aire outtings bring :

Polarizing sunglasses, beach or camping chairs, flat surface to paint on (clipboards, large or small or plywood work well), your own gallon of water, food to nosh, drinks, sunscreen, etc.  Anything you would need for a day at the beach type or in the mountains..

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