After a fantastic week at Clos Mirabel in the Pyrenees, I’m excited to be running another in 2023.

Clos Mirabel perfectly combines grand and homely, packing a stunning view across the valleys to the Pyrenees.  The owners, Rachel and Xavier, bring a quiet luxury to the experience – they genuinely make you feel at home. They want your experience to be unforgettable! The food and wine they provide is delicious and locally sourced. There is a large studio space, stunning grounds, and we’re a short drive from the mountains and an abundance of painterly subjects. The Pyrenees stretch from one end of the horizon to the other – you can’t look away, the view is always changing.

There is no shortage of inspirational subject matter, with the overriding focus being LIGHT.

The dates are:

7 October 2023 – 14 October 2023

See below for the full diary of the weeks – with a mix of studio, plein air and work on location, be prepared to bring back a wealth of new subjects, skills and above all special memories to treasure.

See you there!

Practical notes:

From the UK there are direct flights available to Lourdes, a 45 minute drive from Clos Mirabel. Alternatively you can fly to Pau, transferring in Paris.

Clos Mirabel will order in paint and materials on request, if you would prefer.

For more information, and to book, please click here

About the course:


Jenny Aitken’s work is based on light and atmosphere. During this week long painting holiday at Clos Mirabel in Ju­ran­çon, France, she will guide you to finding the best paths to capture these elements and provide you with necessary tools and techniques to achieve your personal goals.


Saturday – Guests settle and explore Clos Mirabel
An introduction to the course with Jenny Aitken
Welcome drinks and dinner

Sunday – 10am – 12.30pm, 1.30pm – 4pm
Landscape painting in the studio, from photographs, specifically looking at colour, composition, tone and brushwork
Short demonstration which students then work from. Individual tuition throughout the day

Monday – 10am – 12.30pm, 1.30pm – 4pm
Landscape painting en plein air at Clos Mirabel – beginning with a demonstration
Quick sketches based on observation – looking at the difference in colour and how to achieve painterly depth
Afternoon – studio work from sketches
An evening talk on prominent local landscape artists

Tuesday – 10am – 12.30pm
Day out working en plein air in the mountains, with the large vista looking south
Quick sketches based on observation, straight on to looking at lighting, colour, depth and texture
and the economy of brushwork to get as much information as quickly as possible
Lunch at local Auberge La Perchade
1.30pm – 4pm plein air painting/sketching in the village.

Wednesday – day off
Plenty to explore… maybe nearby wine tasting in local vineyard!

Thursday – 10am – 4pm
Studio work from photographs and sketches of the mountains/village
Demonstration, followed by individual tuition

Friday – 10am – 4pm
Free day of painting at Clos Mirabel, with individual tuition throughout
Working either en plein air, still life, or from our photographs and sketches
Evening exhibition in the double living room of Clos Mirabel

Saturday – Breakfast and departure

What you need to bring:
Your tutor will be in touch well before the course with a suggested list of materials.
Clos Mirabel stocks some basic art supplies that you can purchase and there’s no obligation to bring anything specific.

To save you being overloaded on your flight we can provide the following:

Portable chairs
Drawing boards
Water bottles

As for clothing the days are usually warm in the summer time, but it can rain, sometimes for a day or two at a time. So, we recommend a lightweight waterproof coat and perhaps an umbrella to protect your work. The evenings might be a little cooler, so warm pullovers or tops are recommended. Walking shoes are also highly recommended.

Non-participating partners welcome.