Packing for an International Painting Workshop is very different from packing for any other type of trip. Painting on location in Italy and France is an unbeatable experience that requires packing your painting materials and gear for international plane travel, in addition to packing all your personal items.
Although advance planning and preparation can be a time consuming project, it is worth all the effort to be ready to go once your feet hit the ground in your desired painting location. All your valuable time and energy can be devoted to painting since you have everything you need at hand.
So, how best to pack all your “art stuff”
in addition to all your “personal stuff?”
After many painting trips overseas and by airplane, here is what I’ve found works best. Of course, everyone is different, but I hope you find some good tips and direction that will help you on your next International Painting Workshop.
First, I have a master list of everything I need to pack. I keep this as a document on my computer, edit it as needed, and print it off for each trip. First I inventory all items on the list and gather them in one place, checking them off my list as I add them to the pile next to their proposed piece of luggage, and then shopping for anything needed.
I have my list divided into the following Categories.
Essentials in my Crossbody Bag:
In this Category are all items that are required for me to legally and safely stay at my destination, even if all other luggage is delayed or lost.
My list includes Passport, Money – both Dollars and Euros, Credit and Debit Cards, Health Insurance Card, Covid Vaccine Card, International and State Driver’s Licenses, Phone, iPad, Earbuds, and applicable Cords and Adaptor Plugs, Prescription Drugs, Glasses, Sunglasses, and any paper or digital Documents concerning hotels, rental car, reservations, tickets, etc…
Tote Bag as allowed personal item:
Items in the Tote Bag include my plastic bag of allowed carry-on liquids, a sweater, a scarf, a hat, Kleenex, silicone ear plugs, socks, snacks, etc… I place my crossbody bag into the tote bag when boarding the plane.
Carry-On Roller Bag:
Since I don’t want to be truly stranded if my checked bag doesn’t make it I always bring an extra pair of shoes & socks, several underwear, at least two changes of clothes, and a nightgown, plus all my dry cosmetics.
My brushes, dried palette in double ziplock bag, and medium and small sized watercolor blocks also take top priority.
If for some reason my big bag is delayed, or heaven forbid never shows up, I can make it with these items and my crossbody bag/tote bag items for the entire trip. This has happened to me and I was so thankful to be able to keep going without the stress of finding a clean set of clothes to wear and very expensive brushes and paint.
Of course, you can shop and supplement as needed, but not an immediate need to do so if you have this basic kit in your carry-on.
My medium-sized large suitcase holds my half French easel, folding stool, bags of tube watercolors, roll of large paper, larger watercolor blocks, other painting extras like an apron, plastic containers for water, pencils, eraser, small pocket knife, bungee cord, and extra ziplock bags.
Extra shoes, other wet cosmetics and personal items, and all my other clothing are used to pad and wedge all my art supplies and equipment.
Inventory and Prep of Art Supplies
Several weeks before packing I inventory and prepare my art supplies.
This includes filling my palette and letting it dry, getting all my extra tubes in double ziplock bags and labeled as Artist’s Vegetable Colors, and rolling and wrapping my large watercolor paper.
After gathering all the items on my list, checking them off, purchasing anything needed, and preparing my art supplies, I make piles of these items next to their allotted cases. Then I pack them, weigh the cases, remove items if necessary and repack.
Keep your list, and photograph your things, in case of a luggage loss.
Preparing early, packing early, having a reliable luggage scale, and keeping everything as streamlined and light as possible will pay off in dividends with less stress and more fun before and during your International Painting Workshop.
Good luck with your painting, packing and traveling!
I invite you to join me on an
International Painting Workshop of a lifetime in 2024.
Three Week-long Tuscany experiences are planned for May 2024 and three more weeks in France are also in the works.
Dates, Descriptions, and Registrations will be available on my Websites in late September, or by messaging me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please follow me on:
And on My Websites for more about Painting, Watercolor Painting, Plein Air Painting Trips, Traveling to Paint, and to view and purchase my Paintings.
|Virginia Fergus leads small group Plein Air Painting Workshops in Italy and France that are unique opportunities for creative immersion and personal transformation. |
Each workshop includes plein air painting experiences in curated locations, sensitive and personal instruction, experienced and empathetic guidance, artistic immersion, beautiful accommodations and delicious meals in authentic and particular locations, and new friends for the journey.
Ginny's personal motto is “Authentic, Intimate, Beautiful” and is the creative and experiential goal of each workshop. To learn more, visit www.enpleinairwithverginiafergus.com
Slow Travel Tours is an affiliation of small-group tour operators who offer personalized trips in Italy, France and other European countries.