Francesco Fontana – Watercolor in One Stroke – (10-09-2017)


For the first time in Spain, Francesco Fontana teaches a watercolor workshop

Come to paint in the wonderful landscapes of the Valencian community, Spain. You will learn everything you need to improve your paintings in watercolor. Francesco Fontana is a renowned artist worldwide and has spent years conducting watercolor workshops worldwide.

Personalized attention in lower groups of 8 students. Get ready for a great adventure. You won’t regret it!


This course is now only

1445€ per person

(Single Room)

 All levels

Course start date Monday 11th September 2017

Accommodation is available for six nights from Sunday 10th of September 2017


Steps and helps to make the reservation and final payment

First payment

Make The first payment of 250 Euros (this payment guarantees reservation in the course chosen

Second payment
With two months in advance you should make the second payment (final payment), the cost depends on the selected option.



Francesco Fontana Course Prices Options
Single Room Shared with a painter Shared with a non painter
Francesco Fontana (September 10th to 16th) 1445€ 2765€ 2500€
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Francesco Fontana – Watercolor in One Stroke – (10-09-2017)


Workshop Program

Based on most common students’ issues, my standard workshop will focus on three major tasks according to students’ level

Make it Transparent (Beginner)

— Learn the skills to keep your paint transparent, even when your color should be darkest than black. If you are a beginner the quality of your first attempts will double the very minute you give your watercolor its inherent beauty: transparency!

One Brushstroke (Intermediate)

— Learn the economy and expression of the brushwork. Every stroke makes the difference, it’s the ultimate one, your signature. Done quicker than expected? Don’t worry, paint a larger one or hundred more! A priceless discipline for intermediate painters!

Be a Magician (Advanced)

— Learn the artifice to translate real life into poetry. Even when you paint the most mundane subject, you will be able to interprete it with artistic personality. Secrets for advanced painters to develop their unique style!



The followings are necessary for beginners and just suggestions for advanced painters. The latter are free to use their own typical material, as long as they have professional grade paper, pigments and brushes. Clean water and passion would help as well!


1 full sheet (22 x 30”) every two workshop days. Weight min 140lb (300 gr/mq) cold pressed paper. Arches, Fabriano Artistico or equal pro brand. Blocks with glued edges 11 x 15” will do as well.

1 Drawing + Painting Sketchbook: fine grain, 100% cotton rag, 70lb, (140 gr/mq), 8 x 10”


A stretching board for lose sheets, made of plywood, foam board, masonite or alike. Size should be at least 1/2 inches (1 cm) larger in each side than your max paper size (I use half sheet)


Indoor we may use a table, with a lectern table top easel or simple a couple of book under your board.

 Outdoor a light collapsing easel (1,5 Kg) is a good choice. Check W&N or competitors. It has a reclining board holder from vertical to completely horizontal position. Two camping seats are a great alternative out door: one to seat while holding the board on your lap with left hand on its upper side; the second seat to hold palette, water pot, and brushes beside. This option is good to move the board around, at any inclination, vertical to horizontal.


A squared porcelain plate is the best for me. I prefer to drag the paint rather than dig into wells. When a folding palette is needed I might use a Mjiello 18 Airtight / Leak-Proof Watercolor Palette. enameled metal is definitely better than plastic, which tends to stain. I generally do not use pans, to also save brush tips from wearing.


I use tubes. Start with a short number of hues but definitely get artist grade paint. More pigment concentration, less paint waste.  I paint in a limited palette, recently inclined to a selection of earth colors by Daniel Smith. Their Quinacridrone Gold is my fave yellow. And Sodalite Blue is my choice as dark modifier (I have not converted to the use of black yet!). Got some other brands in my box:  love Burnt Sienna by Schminke and China Orange from Sennelier. My purest Blues are Winsor & Newton both red and green shade. I use a bunch of different reds. Basically you want to have in a priority  order: primaries, secondaries and earth colors. I rarely use opaque white.

 Hue               Warmer                  Cooler

 Yellow           Cad Yellow             Lemon Yellow

Red                 Cad Red                 Alazarin Crimson

Blue               U/marine              Cobalt

Earth             Burnt Siena / Raw Siena / Ochre Row Umber / Seppia

Orange          Winsor Orange

Purple          Winsor Violet

Green           Sap Green   Viridian

 Feel free to include one or more from the followings at your choice:

 Darks       Bruno Van Dyck / Ivory Black / Payne Gray / Neutral Tint / Sodalite Blue

Highlight Chinese White or Zinc White (Opaque)


Hake and large flat synthetic (Rosemary&Co, Princeton))

Flat rectangular medium synthetic (Pricenton)

Mop squirrel and filbert (Princeton)

Round large mix sable / synthetic (DaVinci)

Round medium* kolinsky sable (Rosemary&Co)

Round medium synthetic (Princeton, Eleganza by Springer Pinsel )

Round small synthetic (Princeton)

Spotter very tiny round (Princeton, Eleganza by Springer Pinsel)

 * The size of a well sharpened pencil

 Round brushes with fat belly and tiny tip are necessary. I also love flat brushes. Sometimes I cut straight an old pointed brush! As for size every brand goes by its own scale. Pure Kolinski sable is the finest and pricey one. You can find mixed sable / synthetic hair at a reasonable price.

 Brands: I used to paint with W&N Series 7. But even the most costly sable tends to wear its tip especially if you use pans and wells in your palette. Currently I am happy with some Rosemary’s & Co sable brushes. Also working with DaVinci mixed hair and other German brands for synthetic Springer Pinsel (Eleganza). Also use good Chinese calligraphy brushes, as well as some squirrel and synthetic from Princeton.

 Other tools

Masking tape around 1 inc / 2 cm, sketch / note book, soft pencils, rubber, kneaded eraser, cutter, water container (no glass, collapsible if you travel) and a small spray bottle. A sponge, paper towels and tissues. Brush pens (optional) full black, mid grey, light grey for tonal studies. Hair dryer indoor is a smart tool and a cordless one outdoor a real luxury!

References indoor workshop

  • Please bring pictures of your favorite subjects.

  • Any subject, not necessary cityscapes.

  • But please photos you have taken.

  • Print them in color and/or black and white.

  • Your own drawings are welcome as well.

  • Be prepared to share them with the group.

 No guarantee that your pictures will be chosen as a demo reference or assignment, but I’ll consider your suggestions.


Your Free Art Pack;

On the first day of your course at Las Orquideas each artist will be presented with a free art pack.


Dalvaro Art Bag.

Metal palette.

Selection of 12, 5ml, Miele, watercolour paints.

Sufficient paper for the course.


This is a guideline only, as there maybe factors outside our control which can easily force changes to be made.

Sunday 10th September;

Arrival day.


Monday 11th September;

Get to know each other. Morning usually begins in the studio with an introduction to the course, presentation of your free art pack and a discussion about the materials you will be using. Followed by a demonstration showing the process Francesco uses to produce his paintings.


After lunch each student decides on a location within the gardens to make a sketch ready for a painting of their choice.


Tuesday 12th September;

After breakfast a mornings trip out to Denia, lunch at a local restaurant, we will continue our session after lunch before returning to Las Orquideas.

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Wednesday 13th September;

Today we stay close to home, to paint at one of the many wonderful locations within a short drive of Las Orquideas. The afternoon session is spent in the gardens and/or the studio.Francesco-Fontana-watercolour-artist



Thursday 14th September;

A full day trip  to Valencia city . Painting in the morning, which is continued after lunch in Alboraya City or we spend the afternoon sightseeing.

 Valencia Photos Gallery

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Friday 15th September;

Morning is spent finalising the weeks work. Lunch is followed by a presentation of the weeks work and evaluation of the course. This is followed by an evening meal in the town.


Saturday 16th September;

Departure day


Additional Information

Arrival Date

Sunday 10th September 2017

Start Date

Monday 11th September 2017

Cost in Euros €

1445 €

Day workshop

5 Days

Nights in the house

6 Nights




All Levels

Departure date

Saturday 16th September 2017


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Dalvaro Art

"Las Orquideas House", Camino Azagador 46830  

Beniganim, Valencia, Spain

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