Learn the art of Italian street painting in Florence!
You’ve been to the festivals. You’ve seen the pictures. Now return to the land where it began and experience it for yourself. Become part of the chalk painting and street art tradition on this completely unique Chalk Painting in Florence art vacation. Join master artists and teachers Tracy Lee Stum and Sharyn Chan for their week-long chalk art program in Florence, Italy.
Chalk Painting in Florence is a blend of travel, art, new experiences, and lots of laughter. See yourself traveling with a small, friendly group of fellow artists through the piazzas and cobbled streets of Florence. Take part in daily on-site classes with Tracy and Sharyn that will give you hands-on experience in the art of chalk painting. It’s a perfect balance of class time and free time. Be inspired by the work of the Renaissance masters. Learn the skills and techniques unique to chalk painting through sketchbook drawings, materials education, and chalking exercises. Then bring it all together, creating your own masterwork with fellow artists on two separate days of chalk painting in the streets of Florence. All levels are welcome and supported on this one of a kind vacation.
Known as the cradle of the Renaissance, Florence is filled with historical and artistic churches, buildings and monuments. Our guided strolls to your on-site courses will take you to the city’s most iconic sites. You’ll walk the Ponte Vecchio, through Piazza Republica, and to the doorstep of the Duomo with it’s towering dome. You’ll also visit the renown Uffizi museum. Then we will take to the pavement for sketching exercises and chalk painting in the ancient strade or streets.
Who were the Madonnari?
All of these sites will serve as inspiration as you learn the techniques used by original Madonnari. Dating back to the 16th century, these first street artists reproduced images of the Madonna on the city streets of Italy. Earning spare change tossed by appreciative passers-by, they created masterworks using chalk, brick and charcoal. On your Chalk Painting in Florence vacation you will paint in the same place, and alongside, modern i Madonnari street artists.
Once the capital of Italy, Florence is one of the most historic and beautiful cities in Italy, and October is one of the best times to visit. By visiting in the Fall, guests will experience cooler weather and be able to avoid long lines and large crowds. Our Chalk Painting in Florence tour begins and ends in Florence. Served by 3 train stations and an international airport travel to and from this historic destination is easy. For those guests wishing to extend their trip before or after our tour, the train system can put you in Milan, Venice or Rome in 2 hours or less.
Chalk Painting in Florence What’s Included
- Complete Chalk Painting in Florence art program with Tracy Stum and Sharyn Chan
- Friendly and fun small-group
- Itineraries exclusive to The Blue Walk
- Select hotel on the banks of the Arno
- Full hot-buffet breakfasts daily
- Visit to the Uffizi Museum
- Visit to the Boboli Gardens, Pitti Palace, and Bardini Gardens
- Fees and permits for public street painting
- Welcome and farewell dinners
- Fully escorted and hosted throughout
- All hotel taxes and service fees included
- Suitable for all fitness levels
- Suitable for all skill levels – novice, intermediate or master, Tracy and Sharyn will assist and support all guests as needed.
Chalk Painting in Florence What to expect
(Suggested Itinerary, program may change)
Our program begins at our riverside hotel with a meet-and-greet and program overview. Afterward we’ll head out for an orientation walk to familiarize you with the surrounding area. We will take our first trip across the famous Ponte Vecchio and stroll along the sleepy Arno river. Our first evening wraps up gathered around a table with new friends for a convivial welcome aperitivo in the Italian tradition.
The next day we depart the hotel and enter the maze of cobbled streets on our way to the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore (the Duomo of Florence). Along the way you will see the numerous shops and street vendors selling beautiful leather goods, one of the many things Florence is famous for. After the Duomo, we continue on to one of Italy’s most important museums, and Florence’s most visited, the Galleria degli Uffizi. The Uffizi is home to the world’s finest collection of Renaissance paintings, including “The Birth of Venus” by Botticelli.
At the Uffizi, Tracy and Sharyn will lead you through the great works of art with a chalk painter’s eye. Learn how perspective, scale, and light were handled by the masters and how they relate to your chalk painting today. Capture inspiration and memories in your sketchbook for the collaborative street painting in the coming days. Filled with ideas and visions for chalk art we will finish the evening with our welcome dinner of wonderful Tuscan fare.
The next morning we walk to the other side of the Arno river and explore the Palazzo Pitti, Giardino di Boboli and the Church of Santa Felicita. Your on-site sketches will capture the beautiful surroundings as you learn techniques on how to replicate architectural features, choose materials, and Sharyn and Tracy’s tips and tricks of the trade. The remainder of the afternoon and evening are free for guests to explore Florence.
Armed with ideas, inspiration, and newly learned skills you’ll take your new knowledge to the pavement on the following day. Depending upon group size and project you will work in groups of 2-6. Tracy and Sharyn will go over the project management aspects of large scale chalk painting. These include subject choice, planning, and layout. Depending upon size and complexity, chalk painting projects may take 3-6 hours. Guests are free to come and go throughout the day as they feel comfortable. Some may want to stay all day. Others may need a break for caffe or gelato. (Since you will be painting alongside real Madonnari painters, don’t be surprised if tourists stop to watch and maybe toss you a few coins.)
After you have had enough for the day, the evening is free. Perhaps dine on famous Bistecca alla Florentine, or Ribollita (vegetable and bread soup) a classic Tuscan comfort food. For the more adventurous there is Lampredotto, Florence’s street food specialty. It has been called “a tripe-lover’s dream.” Of course, being in Tuscany, there are always some of the world’s best wines to sample.
The final two days of your Chalk Painting in vacation you’ll continue to explore Florence, drawing, sketching and completing another street chalk painting. There will be free time each day to spend as you wish. Perhaps exploring the many famous museums, strolling along the Arno or climbing Giotto’s bell tower which provides arguably the best view of the city.
Our final night we will gather to celebrate a week spent learning, collecting memories, and new friendships made at our farewell dinner. The next day are departures as everyone makes their way back home or on to other destinations.
Where in the World?
The Chalk Painting in Italy vacation takes place in Florence, Italy. We will explore this beautiful, historic city known for its famous buildings, churches, piazzas, and of course its art and sculpture collections. The heart of the famous Tuscany region, Florence is the perfect setting for our chalk and street art program where i Madonnari still practice this ancient art form daily.