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Your Artist and Guide

Bethany Ekblad

I love making art! I love travel It is a dream come true for me to bring my great passions together and share this amazing experience with you.

My artistic story began in earnest in 2010.  I was successfully selling my decoupaged wine bottles (which we will be making in Tuscany) at art shows but I had never considered expanding to include anything else. While flipping through Somerset Studio art magazine, I saw a little paragraph advertising a painting class...  in Orvieto Italy...  in a convent...  painting faces!  Having never painted before and with no formal artistic training I had no business in that class.  The thought of traveling to Italy nagged at me for months.  My brain kept telling me "but you've never painted before", "but you'll be terrible", "but it costs too much money", "but people will think you're crazy going off by yourself."

The convent where I had my first art class

One of the things that sets this experience apart from other European art workshops is the inclusion of several guided travel days. 

I took a chance!

Although I had doubts in my head, my heart was screaming "TAKE A CHANCE!!".  For the first time in my life, I listened to that voice inside of me and went on that trip.  Even though I was right about one thing (I WAS terrible at painting faces) the passion for both painting and the beauty of Italy ignited on that trip has forever changed the course of my life. 

Since that trip I paint every chance I get.  I didn't know "the rules" so I made up my own and developed my own style of finger painting that is totally free and uninhibited.  I don't paint with little tiny brushes but rather with my fingers and wet paper towels.  Everything is loose and free allowing for true freedom of expression rather than striving to make it look like it's "supposed to".  Art is SO much more fun that way!

My passion for teaching came when I taught my first class with these simplified techniques.  The look of pride and amazement on your face is my favorite part of each class and has become as much of a joy for me as creating the art itself.  You will do things that you didn't think you could possibly do, and that is why I teach! 

My first face in Italy.  Nice eyes.  Yikes!

With so many European artistic opportunities out there for the "serious" artist, what does that leave for everyone else? I've created an experience that will speak to someone who simply loves the joy of creating - experienced artist or not.  The atmosphere in my Italian classes is totally relaxed, totally fun. Simply hanging out and creating with other adventuresome, like-minded people.  


These classes are designed to inspire creativity long after you've left Italy.  I'm here to show you that you ARE creative and capable of making beautiful art.  With forgiving techniques designed to help your creativity shine, you will surprise yourself with the professional results you can get with just a few simple instructions.



I got better!

Sunflower done with fingers and a toothpick

So much better when the eyes are the same size!

I can think of no better place to experience this creative exploration than Italy.  This beautiful, inspiring country's charm captivated me during that fateful trip in 2010.  The art, the history, the food, the wine, the incomparable natural beauty... it all combines together to make a place like nowhere on earth. 

I want to share my expertise in Italy with everyone, especially those who might otherwise be hesitant to go.  Traveling to a foreign country alone can be intimidating.  The thought of trying to deal with such issues as how to figure out where you are going, how to ride the public transportation, how to communicate with the locals, or even sometimes how to work the toilets (I'm not kidding) can be quite scary. 


This is a great way for the solo traveler to explore the country.  You come by yourself but you won't be alone.  Your entire trip will be in the company of your new friends.  This is also a great opportunity for a girls trip.  How incredible would it be to share this experience with your closest family or friends?  I will take care of all the details from accommodations to private drivers. All you have to do is show up and have fun. 


I love art.  I love teaching. And I love Italy! I want to share that love with other adventuresome spirits. 


I want to give you an artistic experience you will never forget.

fill me with extraordinary, adventuresome moments......

Appassionata Me

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