big sky art - blog 2

Herman Pekel’s recent Big Sky Art residential art course took place at the end of May. A smallish group of 8 students had the pleasure of being taught by one of the foremost watercolourists in the world. Herman, Alvara Castagnet and Joseph Zbuvic are known as the ‘Big Three’, all of them hailing from Melbourne which seems to produce wonderful painters. It was an amazing experience to watch Herman’s demos - of nearby locations, including Burnham Market, Burnham Overy Staithe, Thornham and a corner of the farm which surrounds The White House. An absolute master of the ‘wet into wet’ technique, Herman told his class on Day 1 that he wouldnt rest until they had mastered that technique along with ‘dry brush’ which he says is an essential tool in a watercolourist’s amoury. Amazingly, most of us pulled off some satisfactory paintings, and thoroughly benefitted from being taken out of our comfort zone. Herman’s energetic and enthusiastic personality was inspiring, and he took enormous trouble to help individuals throughout the 4 days. As usual The White House gained full marks for its comfort and luxury and the dinners produced by Steve at Burn Valley catering were simply superb.

For another rave review of Herman Pekel’s art course, visit the blog of one of Brian Tucker, one of the artists taking part, at

Hopefully we can persuade Herman to return in 2020, and the meantime we look forward to John Tookey’s 3 day watercolour and pastel course in early June. It is nearly full, but there is still a space for last minute bookings.