Creative Awakening: 3-day Watercolor and Yoga Retreat with Penny Otwell and Heather Sullivan
Be inspired and develop your creativity through watercolor instruction by acclaimed local artist Penny Otwell on a 3-day weekend camping retreat in Yosemite! Learn to express your ideas with color, design, value and plein air painting techniques within the breathtaking backdrop of Yosemite’s high country, Tuolumne Meadows. Morning yoga sessions and day-hikes will be offered by Heather Sullivan as a way to open our hearts and minds to the creative process and the guidance of the natural world. No prior art experience necessary.
We will be working with watercolor and sketching materials. Change your perception of what's possible when you take to watching daily demos, sharing ideas, observing nature, and developing the art of working comfortably outdoors.
Become mindful to the creative process while immersed in the beauty of the Sierra landscape. Otwell will encourage you to reach down deep and find your own muse-your personal connection and response to nature-empowering you to portray your unique visual message. We hope that this weekend course inspires you to continue painting outdoors long after you return home.
- Watercolor techniques and demonstrations
- An opportunity to connect with nature and find your muse
- Optional morning yoga classes
- Optional guided naturalist hikes
- Fresh meals include local and organic ingredients
We will gather at Tuolumne Meadows Campground at 3:00 pm for introductions, intention setting and an orientation to the course. In the afternoon we will take our first hike to acquaint ourselves with the area. After dinner there will be time for relaxing, sharing stories, and stargazing as we settle in for our first night in the mountains.
Each morning will begin with hot drinks, a nourishing breakfast, and creative fun. The day includes watercolor instruction, short hikes exploring the elements for investigations and inspiration from the magic of trees, granite rock, alpine lakes, or mountain streams. Nature invokes creativity and sparks the imagination for our art. We'll return to our camp with time for more painting, journal writing, lessons, and discussions. In the evening we will relax, prepare a delicious meal together, and enjoy good company and conversation before falling asleep under the starry skies of the Sierra.
We greet the day together to continue our creative explorations and group activities. After a celebratory lunch at camp, you will have time to further explore our beautiful surroundings. You will leave this campground retreat inspired and energized, present and connected to nature, empowered with tools to continue your personal painting journey. We will conclude by 2 p.m.
Note on Itinerary:
This schedule is an outline. It is subject to change depending on the needs of the group and of course moods of the elements. It allows for spontaneous inspiration. This program operates rain or shine.
Professional instruction and guiding, campground and permit fees, first-aid supplies, and group gear for camping. Balanced Rock provides delicious and high-quality meals, cooking gear, and water purification supplies.
Transportation to and from your hometown, and personal items including most art supplies.
The driving time to Tuolumne Meadows from the Bay Area is 4-5 hours and varies depending on traffic and road conditions. For California highway conditions visit http://www.dot.ca.gov/ or call 1-800-427-7623. For the latest road conditions and advisories in the park, call 1-209-372-0200 then press 1. You are required to carry and be prepared to use tire chains.
Important Information about Air Travel:
Prior to purchasing your airline tickets contact Balanced Rock to confirm the trip has the minimum number of participants required and has not exceeded its maximum capacity. email@example.com or 209-379-9453.
Mammoth Yosemite airport (MMH): 1 hour; 47 miles to Tuolumne Meadows. One daily flight in and out of LAX (Los Angeles).
Reno-Tahoe International (RNO): 3hrs, 13 minutes; 158 miles to Tuolumne Meadows
Fresno (FAT): 3 hrs, 18 minutes; 144 miles to Tuolumne Meadows
San Francisco (SFO): 4 hours; 214 miles to Tuolumne Meadows
Oakland (OAK): 3 hrs, 42 minutes; 195 miles to Tuolumne Meadows
Sacramento (SAC): 3 hrs, 44 minutes; 204 miles to Tuolumne Meadows
Modesto (MOD): 2 hrs, 46 minutes; 128 miles to Tuolumne Meadows
Public Transportation and Carpooling:
There is excellent train and bus transportation from the Bay Area to Tuolumne Meadows via BART train, then Amtrak, then the YARTS bus, and finally the Tuolumne Meadows shuttle bus. Once you are enrolled we will send you detailed pre-trip information including options for carpooling. We typically arrange for carpooling depending on participant location in the 2 weeks prior to the trip.
We will be camping at the Tuolumne Meadows campground in tents and shelters provided by Balanced Rock or under the stars.
Appropriate and open to all levels of art, outdoor and yoga experience. This trip requires the ability to hike at altitudes ranging from 8,000 to 9,000 feet, over varying mountain terrain. To maximize your enjoyment of the trip, we suggest that you engage in a regular exercise routine prior to the course. We also recommend that you stay well-hydrated prior to departure to assist in adjusting to altitude. Please see notes in the welcome letter for further information on preparing for our adventure.
Daytime temperatures can range between 50°-90° F. Mountain weather can change quickly. It is common to have clear sunny mornings with building clouds and afternoon showers followed by clear starry skies at night. Please check the forecast frequently before your course and plan accordingly. Visit the Yosemite National Park "Plan Your Visit" site for detailed information and weather-related links. http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/hours.htm
Please read this information carefully and call us if you have any questions. Detailed pre-trip information, including directions to the meeting place, will be sent when you enroll.
Dates: August 2-4, 2013
Early-Bird: $400 if purchased by June 2, 2013
Total Days: 3
Group Size: 4-12
Location: Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite National Park