Botanical Painting in the South Downs
Plants have an endless variety of forms, colours and shapes which make them fascinating for those with an artistic eye to capture. This subject was important to both naturalists and explorers in the 18th century as their only means of recording the weird and wonderful wildlife that they found. Under the expert guidance of our art leader you’ll improve your botanical painting skills, learning technical form, use of colour and tone, and how to use your equipment. This break is best suited to those with some experience with drawing and watercolour.
- Guidance from expert artists
- Full days to practise in inspirational surroundings
- Fun and supportive environment
- Small groups of 15 people or under
- High quality Full Board en-suite accommodation and excellent food in our Country House
- Tuition from our knowledgeable HF Holidays’ leader, to ensure you get the most from your holiday
- Loan of wooden A3 art boards
There will be full days practising your chosen discipline with breaks throughout the day for a cup of tea (or two!) and lunch. Most tuition and practice will take place inside the house, but if the sun is out, we may head into the grounds to take advantage of some fresh air.
In the evenings, you can relax in the house lounges and bar, socialise with other guests or take part in a wide range of house activities.
Tucked away in the village of Thakeham at the foot of the South Downs, Abingworth Hall has stood in one form another since the 13th century. Gutted by fire, it was rebuilt in 1910 in its current distinctive style. As well as 27 ensuite rooms the house has all the ingredients you need for the perfect country house stay: three comfortable lounges with squishy sofas to kick back in, the largest of which opens onto an attractive conservatory and bar in which to dally, great food and super-comfy rooms to retire to. You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to walking here; go for a lazy amble around the wildlife rich chalk Downlands to discover a colourful tapestry of historic villages, thatched cottages, pastoral landscapes and vibrant market towns. Highlights of your stay might include the Seven Sisters, the Glorious Goodwood estate, the Devil’s Dyke and Chantonbury Ring, as well as Arundel and the National Trust property at Petworth. Take your pick.
Tea & coffee-making facilities, TV, Hairdryer, Toiletries, Wi-Fi
Stay in one of the Hall’s smartly presented rooms, which make use of every nook-and-cranny in the interesting architecture of this characterful house. With 27 bedrooms, Abingworth Hall has plenty of space and there’s a range of Good and Better Rooms to choose from. Clean and bright, with accent colours to offset the simple palette, the rooms are airy and light. Better Rooms might have a feature wall or strong print wallpaper as well as pretty tiles in the ensuite bathroom.
All ‘Good’ rooms are ensuite and furnished to a high standard. There are also several ‘Better’ Rooms that are either larger or have a desirable view, a more luxurious mattress, larger television, enhanced toiletries and a fluffy bathrobe & slippers – upgrade your stay for just an extra £15-20 per person per night. You can choose a specific room for an extra £30 per room, subject to availability. Upgrade supplements still apply.
Free Wi-Fi, boot room and drying room, extensive garden, outdoor swimming pool, multi-purpose activity room, three lounges, library and board games to borrow
After a day strolling on the South Downs, come back to the house and its specially tailored walkers’ facilities. Relax in the large gardens and sit by the pretty pond, turn your hand to croquet or practice on the putting green. Ease through a couple of lengths of the heated outdoor pool if you’ve still got energy to burn. Hole up in the light-filled conservatory with pretty views of the gardens or retire to the Drawing Room with its wood-panelled walls, log burner, library of books to browse and comfy seats to sink in to; there’s a telescope for you to scour the night sky too. In the evening, take your seat in the bar or join fellow guests in the large ballroom for the evening activity.
Food & Drink
As at all our country houses, holidays are full board, from afternoon tea served as a welcome treat through that evening’s meal to a hearty breakfast on the day of departure. Lunch is a chance to stock up on our famous picnic snacks. Food at Abingworth Hall is varied and tasty and has a strong emphasis on ingredients from the area and seasonal produce. Once a week the dining room, which has a giant brick fireplace at its heart, hosts a Local Food Night, when, over a sociable evening, you might try a five-course feast of local Sussex flavours. Look out for the Sussex Churdle, a traditional, meaty ploughboy lunch, local Chiddingly beef cooked with black olives and Sussex smokies, smoked haddock served in a prawn sauce. Cap it all with a Sussex Pond Pudding, a pud that’s part of the honourable tradition of British dishes with names to pique the interest more than the appetite, which is actually bright and zingy, suety and syrupy all at the same time
For accessibility and assistance information, please contact our expert team on 020 3974 8865
What to Bring
• Pencils (including 2H and HB)
• Putty rubber or good quality eraser
• Cartridge paper or sketchbook
• Watercolour paints (artist quality)
• Watercolour paintbrushes - any that you have, as long as they have a good point
• Watercolour paper (the leader tends to use at least 300gms (140lbs), stretched or in a blued-block format). Avoid using rough papers, the leader uses Fabriano Hot pressed.
• Tracing paper
• Any other equipment that you have, such as water pots, cotton cloths etc.
• Magnifying glass
Lightweight wooden A3 drawing boards are available for guest loan at the house.
Her work, developed over 40 years in illustration is known for its liveliness, charm and detail as well as botanical accuracy. She has illustrated four specialist books. They are “Pears” .“Plums” And “Natural Dyes”. Her book The Botanical Illustrator’s Handbook was published in 2014. Holder of many.RHS medals and teacher-trained, she has been Art Tutor at Kingston Maurward College, Dorset since 1999., and formerly at the Eden Project. She demonstrated at Art in Action from 2002 to 2005, and has run art holidays at home and abroad, including a Himalayan trek just for artists.
All holidays are subject to availability. Prices are subject to change.
Prices based on two people sharing. Supplements may apply.
Non-member fee: £10 per person.
|Date (Start - End)||Nights||Itinerary||Price||Status||Trip Notes||Book|
24 Apr - 27 Apr
|3||Art||£419||Available||Trip Notes||Book Now|
3 nights from £419pp £419pp
...or call 020 3974 8865