Testimonials of former participants of our painting workshops and art tours

I recommend Studio Italia to every artist, painter, hobbyists, historian, and art enthusiast. I have returned from this magnificent experience a different artist. Yves has inspired my creativity and extended my knowledge way beyond my expectations. I also feel much less anxiety about my art, I am somewhat free of too much self-judgement, and this is an enormous relief. Yves and Monica are passionate about their business and have honed this workshop over fifteen years into the smoothest and tightest run ship, between painting, lectures in French and English, and curated museum tours everything flows along magically…The food is a culinary delight…The friendships formed will last a life time. (L. Prussing, Port Macquarie, Australia, Studio Italia 2014)

There are not enough words to describe the experience, in Studio Italia, The combination of lectures in art history, tours in museums and medieval cities as well as plein-air painting the scenic vistas in Tuscany has for ever changed the mannerism, train of thought, and the way I paint. For me it was the ideal combination of vacation and painting. One must not forget the gourmet meals and wine, after a long day under the Tuscan sun.!!!! Thank You Walk the Arts. (G. Priniotakis, Dollard des Orméaux, Canada, Studio Italia 2014)

For a novice in painting as me, Studio Italia was a real “parenthèse enchantée”, plenty of painting, great feelings, marvelous landscapes, delicious and laughing diners and above all so sweet people. Thanks to the “dream team! I’ll never forget! (F. Jacques, Metz, France, Studio Italia 2014)

The whole experience was totally enriching – emotionally, intellectually and visually. The rich mix of painting with Yves’ instructions, his lectures on art history and theory and the wonderful visual sensations of hill top towns. Monica’s food was “gourmety plus”. The whole workshop will remain a peak experience in my life. (B. Cail, Sydney, Australia, Studio Italia 2013).

One of the best holidays and learning experiences I have had in my life. A thought provoking, reflective, and inspirational short time that I would dearly love to repeat. (S. Scanlan, Sydney, Australia, Studio Italia 2013)

A really memorable experience and delightful to recall. It offered so much more than my expectations! New creative experiences, wonderful meals, so much sharing, interesting excursions, a pervasive atmosphere of fun and fulfilment, an environment that encouraged creativity and insightfulness. (T. Burns, Sydney, Australia, Studio Italia October 2013).

Every day opened my heart and soul to a new and innovative art experience. The country environment added to the Italian experience provided by our hosts, the locations for plein air were endless, the instruction encouraged us to be free and express our true selves and the lectures were inspiring. (N. Hinshaw, Stonington, CT, U.S.A. Studio Italia 2013)

Our second time with you both and again thank you both for a great learning and travelling experience filled with fun, drink, fantastic food, travel, friendship and very wise council and advice. Thank you very much! (B. and M. Cohen, Ottawa, Canada, Atelier Provence 2014)

Painting workshops are easy to find on the Internet. However, thrifty artists must ask the big question: Which ones are worth the investment of time, effort and money? Based on my recent experience at a ten-day workshop in Tuscany, I can heartily endorse Studio Italia, led by Prof. Yves M. Larocque and Monica Marquez, his able partner. (M. Hall, Ottawa, Canada, Studio Italia 2012 & 2011)

Memories of the time I spent in Tuscany with you and the other artists brightened up my days. My friends and my Husband (Who is my sternest critic) love my new-found confidence and style of painting .Thank you so much again for a fabulous 10 days. (S. B., Adelaide, Australia, 2011)

Yves and Monica went out of their way to make sure everyone was involved and having a good time… I would certainly like to do this workshop again. I would recommend it to my friends. Well done! (M.J. H., Ottawa 2011)

Every day we travelled, piling into the van, teasing Piero with our jokes. Montepulciano, Cortona, Assissi, Pienza, Firenze and more – painting, laughing, learning, struggling with our brushes, paints and fears. “LET GO!” cried Yves. “MORE PAINT!” said he! “Forget the ‘pretty picture’ – paint with your HEART!” and “Paint your own stories, and be honest!” urged our instructor as he pushed us further on our journey. We struggled, we groaned, we despaired, we triumphed! (S.P. Adelaide, Australia, 2009)

I really enjoyed the workshop, learned more about painting than I expected. The company was great. The setting is great – lots or room to mill about, paint, walk, swim… (.P. D, Ottawa, 2011)

I am returning because of the excellence in the teaching of art history combined with real painting lessons, the itinerary, the tours and the food. The whole experience is based on the culture of the country one stays in and Yves and Monica make the most of it. (B. P. Ottawa, 2011)

I enjoyed so much the place full of charm and history, the spirit, the conversation, the tasteful and colourful meals, etc. I laughed for ten consecutive days among wine, delicious food and friends… It was an ADORABLE experience. (T. G., Bogotá, Colombia, 2011).

Yves and Monica work hard to make an entertaining and educational experience effortless. Excellent value for money! This was our third time and not our last. (S. and R. Gougeon, Ottawa, Canada, New York Art Trip 2014)

This was my third time going with Walkthearts and I really enjoyed the hosts and the planning was superb. (M.A. Varley, Ottawa, Canada, New York Art Trip 2014)

Thanks, we had fun and learned a lot (N. Akman and D. Emmens, Ottawa, Canada, New York Art Trip 2014

Thank you for the marvellous experience that you made possible for me with the New York tour. The pre-arrangements, the hotel, the schedule and the actual visits were all excellent. I appreciated, learned and stretched my mind… My mind is filled with wonderful images and happy memories. (Valerie Knowles, Ottawa, Canada, New York Art Trip 2013)

It was a wonderful trip. Everything went smoothly and your hard work, attention to detail, your flexibility in suddenly adding something special (Odd Nerdrum) and all the excellent information was very much appreciated by everyone. The trip was superb, a great learning experience — and much fun! Many thanks to you both! (Ottawa, Canada, New York Art Trip 2012)

I am writing to thank you both so much for the wonderful experience of Provence – life, laughter, lavender; fabulous art, friendships, food, fun & Yves with his inspiration!So many villages & beautiful fields & skies & mountains & sunsets, & yes, even nights!!  Many many thanks to you both for such a fantastic & fabulous week.  But whilst my painting doesn’t yet reflect where my heart would like to take it, I can only keep working on this & becoming braver & letting go…  (L.L, Adelaide, Australia, 2011)

I hope life is starting to settle down for you after our wonderful time together in Provence….what an experience! Thank you both! Times like these just can’t be put in words adequately for me as I feel so privileged to be part of this experience…(L.B, Adelaide, Australia, 2011)

I learned to be bold with colour and to have an ordered palate. Thanks for the drives around the many little cities and arranging for us to join in on a town celebration. Thanks for cooking the imaginative tasty meals that I looked forward to each day. I will ever remember these experiences. ….(E.W., Ottawa, 2011).

The ambiance, the surroundings, the food, the artistic immersion, it was a worthwhile experience…. (E.M. Ottawa, 2010)

I used to paint, now I am an artist! (S.P.., Adelaide, Australia, 2009)

Thank you for a most wonderful journey! The art, the food, the company, the humour! Everything was you! (T. P., Adelaide, Australia, 2009)

Unforgettable friendships, fun, food, happy hours and hours, painting , learning , seeing gorgeous historic places and driving through beautiful scenic country. A feast for all the senses! (M. & B. H, Adelaide, Australia, 2009)

Thank you for a wonderful time, best workshop, marvellous motivation and discussion, superlative food and ambiance; words fail. (G.S., Adelaide, Australia, 2009)

A fantastic journey! Learning, loving, laughing, eating!… I was absolutely blown away by the workshop and it far exceeded my expectations. (M. O., Adelaide, AU, 2009)



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