Join me: painting in France!

betty ming liu Art, Travel 21 Comments

If you’re reading this, then you’ve just eyeballed the first phase of my blog’s new look. I’m going for a life makeover too…

For starters, I’m off to my dream vacation: painting in Claude Monet’s garden. Yes, yes, yes! I am indeed talking about Giverny, the setting for his breathtaking water lilly murals.

The 10-day adventure also includes a few days in Honfleur, which is gorgeous too. This is a trip organized by the Art Students League of New York. I’m going because the marvelous Frank O’Cain is taking us there. Having done some abstract painting workshops with Frank, I know he’ll show me fresh ways of seeing and expressing myself.

Blogging from France is another odyssey. Since I’m hauling a portable easel, paints, brushes, paper and more crap than I ever knew existed, the last thing I need is the added weight of a laptop.

So I plan to file via iPhone6. To make sure this idea can work, this blog post is a test drive from the comfort of my kitchen. Fingers crossed…

Let’s see what happens. I’ll bet breaking out of conventional laptop mode will trigger new ways of interacting with my blog, my mobile device and maybe even my very own brain.

Here’s an example of what I mean…to prepare for this trip, I installed some art apps on my iPhone. Check out this doodle, which I did on an app called Sketches. This is the first time I’ve ever drawn with my index finger:

IMG_2590 Isn’t this crazy???

While I love my cozy life, I’m so excited about breaking free of daily routines. Once again, my trusty blog is taking me by the hand and telling me to have fun. Go for it.

Just seeing my blog as a white canvas is already helping me breathe easier. Bye-bye orange overkill. Hello, open, undefined space.

I fly to Paris tomorrow (Friday, June 5th), where we’ll catch a bus to Giverny. My return date is June 15th. In between, I’m hoping to blog EVERY SINGLE DAY.

But first, we have to see if this first post from New York goes through. If it works, hope you’ll stop by and drop a comment below on what you’re up to over the next few weeks. Any dreams taking shape or coming true?

Okay, time to hit the send button. :)

Here we go.

One…two…three…send!

Comments 21

  1. Hey, it works! Although, uploading the photo is buggy. The image you’re seeing is too big and slightly warped. But if you click on it, you will see it the way it’s supposed to look.

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    Okaaaay….so this is what happened:
    — the blog post uploaded beautifully.
    — loading the photo is buggy. It’s not reducing to the proper size.
    — I can’t post comments from my phone.
    — I can’t moderate comments from my phone. So depending on how you’re following me and how long you’ve been following, your comments might or might not show up immediately. If they don’t show up, I will clear them once I get back home.

    Well, the technology is what it is. Later this summer, I hope to get into phase 2 of the blog makeover, which involves chucking this layout for a less glitchy one. Meantime, we’ll just work with the weird photos and spotty comments. Thanks for reading and wish me luck!

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  3. In the words of Oscar Wilde, “when good Americans die, they go to Paris.” I hope that’s true and I hope I don’t have to until then to get back to the most wonderful city in the world. I’m excited for you. I’m always excited for anyone I know who goes to Paris. Have you seen the Monets at the Orangerie? Fabulous!! And the food! I don’t think it is possible to get a bad meal in Paris. Have a wonderful time.

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      Well, Toby, I’m not dying — but I am dying to go to Paris. Unfortunately, won’t be stopping there this trip. Just going straight into Giverny. And yes, I have seen the Monets at Musee de L’Orangerie. What an adorable museum. Hit it on my last trip to Paris three years ago. I’m hoping for good food too! Thanks for your good wishes!

  4. We’ll be there with you in spirit. Just thinking about you painting there makes me feel like I’m going to be there. Enjoy the setting and imagine the painters who have painted there before you.

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      Thank you, Julia! In planning this trip, my attitude has changed so much. Not looking to paint any masterpieces or even finish any paintings. Just going to have a good time soaking up the color and the experience. Letting go of the pressure feels good!

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  5. Hello Betty,

    My cottage is 25 minutes from Giverny! Let me know when I can come and sneak you away for a meal!

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      Barryyyyyy — really?!! Ok, emailing you privately now. Everyone, Barry and I were classmates at Stuyvesant High School! We reconnected when I went to Paris with my daughter a few years ago. Wow. Another example of the value of blogging.

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  6. I am thrilled for you and can almost see, hear and smell the image of you slapping on the gobs of oilpaint in Giverny. A glorious thought. Have a wonderful time!!!
    Miss you !
    xox
    Jean

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      Jean — NO OIL PAINT!! I am giving watercolor a shot. Can you believe it??! I took some private lessons over the last few months. Don’t feel ready but feel prepared. I get the basics. The idea of hauling oils and canvasses….I just couldn’t wrap my brain around that.

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