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Inspired by nature at La Bonita

15th - 18th May, 2020 - Botanical Art Workshop / Retreat with Shevaun Doherty SBA

Dreaming of escaping to a place where you can paint surrounded by the scent of orange blossom, birdsong and the soft rustle of leaves? Why not join botanical artist Shevaun Doherty on an Andalusian art workshop?


Surrounded by orchards of avocados, lemons, olives, and oranges, this workshop will focus on the watercolour techniques needed to capture the rich colours and textures of fruit picked fresh from the trees. 


Each day there will be guided tuition on the techniques needed to create realistic form and colour, with demonstrations and individual support. The course will cover observational drawing, watercolour techniques (washes, glazes, and dry brush), colour mixing, creating realistic form through tones and colour, and finishing (corrections, contours and adding the fine details).


Shevaun’s friendly approach to teaching and the tranquil atmosphere of our farm will make this an experience to enjoy and remember.

The dates of this retreat have been especially selected to coincide with the FIESTA DE LA NARANJA, a traditional festival that marks the end of the orange harvest. During your stay you will visit the fiesta in the village square in Coín and enjoy few tapas during the celebrations.


Please be advised that this workshop can be booked as a residential or non-residential course:

Residential -- stay at Hacienda La Bonita on a full-board basis for a 6-day retreat, arriving on 14th May and leaving 19th May 2020. Tuition will take place on 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th May.

Non-residential -- stay at one of the numerous hotels and B&Bs in the Coin area, and attend the workshop from 15th to 18th May, enjoying a home-cooked lunch every day.


Visit Shevaun's website for further information. Please contact us for a brochure or email Shevaun at

Three day / weekend retreat 2020 (TBC) - Botanical Art / Vellum Workshop with Shevaun

Take inspiration from the olive harvest at Hacienda la Bonita and capture the colours and textures in watercolour. Painting will be both on paper and vellum depending on experience in working with watercolours. Calfskin vellum is a  unique and beautiful surface to paint on, bringing a luminous quality to painting that cannot be reproduced on paper.  An experienced tutor in watercolour techniques, Shevaun will take you through the various phases that are needed to create vibrant realistic form. Surrounded by stunning vistas of the Spanish countryside, it will be difficult not to feel both inspired and encouraged.

This three-day retreat is suitable for those with some previous experience who wish to take their skills to the next level. A selection of vellum from William Cowley Parchment Makers UK will be provided.

For those wishing to extend their stay by one day (on which there will be no art tuition), we offer a guided visit to an olive mill and lunch in a local restaurant.

Exact dates for this retreat are not yet available, but be advised that beginning to middle of November usually the time of year that we harvest the fruit.

Visit Shevaun's on her website or on Instagram 

Please contact us for a brochure or email Shevaun at

A Summer Sketchbook, 31st August-4 September 2019, with Julie Sajous FULLY BOOKED

Julie Sajous, an artist living and working on the Isle of Wight, will be holding a summer workshop this year at Hacienda La Bonita. Julie's teaching style is ideal for those wishing to improve their painting skills as well as beginners.


Capture the beautiful surroundings of our farm and local white villages in a sketchbook using a variety of techniques, including sketching, pen and wash, mixed media and collage whilst you relax during your stay at La Bonita. Julie's encouraging approach will help you to create your lasting memory of the beautiful region and the natural wonder of our hacienda. Visit her website or her Instagram.


During the art retreat, you are welcome to enjoy the pool and gardens. There will also be opportunities to take part in gentle farming activities for those wishing to experience farm life when they are not sketching.


The next retreat, An Andalusian Sketchbook -- Summer Colours, is scheduled to take place 31st August -- 4th September 2019.

This retreat is now fully booked.

Botanical Drawing with Marta

Marta Chirino is a botanical artist who leads Botanical Drawing Workshops at the Royal Botanical Garden, Madrid. At La Bonita, Marta offers three- and four-day workshops in botanical drawing through scientific illustration. She encourages participants' to improve their artistic skills by building up from short, simple exercises, such as drawing nuts and dry leaves, to more dynamic drawings of the flora on the farm. Participants will learn to observe the morphology of plants during this unique artist's retreat.


Marta is a member of the Society of Botanical Artists of England and in 1999 won a Royal Horticultural Society Gold Medal. She also is the holder of the SBA Margaret Stevens Award and The Certificate of Botanical Merit. Marta has published several botanical illustration books and regularly exhibits her work in galleries and art shows.  Follow her on her blog or visit her website.


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