Art Retreat at Inn at Riverbend

From our friends at the Inn at Riverbend:


Art Retreat at Inn at Riverbend


Our bed and breakfast proudly announces a weekend retreat to surround you in the majestic beauty of the New River Valley in luxurious accommodations while learning an exciting watercolor technique from a gifted and award winning artist – Jessica Pace-Berkeley.  Jesi is currently teaching at Virginia Polytechnic University’s Lifelong Learning Institute.  Jesi states “There I teach introductory through advanced classes, with a focus on composition, color theory and concept. The strongest aspect I believe I offer those students are a deadline and a great system of critique”.


The location of the Inn at Riverbend is beyond perfect for visual stimulation and tranquility for concentration.  Two decks overlook the New River Valley and Appalachian Mountains of Virginia, insuring outdoor work and relaxation space in any weather.  The “Great Room” offers huge windows allowing for natural light and an airy workspace.  The accommodations are luxurious and offer all inclusive guest amenities of a Select Registry property.  The Inn has received numerous awards from such sites as TripAdvisor, Virginia Green Tourism and Virginia Living to name but a few.


Attending an Art Workshop at the Inn at Riverbend is an experience you will long remember and the techniques learned will stimulate lifelong creativity.   The 3-day workshop will begin on Friday, January 31 with a wine and cheese gathering beginning at 5 pm to introduce the instructor and meet fellow artists.  On Saturday, following a gourmet breakfast, the workshop will be held from 9:30 to 5:00 pm with a break for lunch.  Dinner begins at 6:30 pm and will provide an opportunity to ask questions or discuss the techniques taught.  The day formally ends at 8 pm and resumes with breakfast on Sunday morning.  Classes continue after breakfast ending at 2 pm. Treat yourself or a loved one to this limited opportunity.  Room reservations for the entire weekend are required.


The cost of the art retreat is $295 which includes instruction and meals while lodging is in addition.  Please call for further details as prices will vary for double occupancy, non-artist guests and other variations.  Consider a gift certificate or enroll to experience a workshop that will keep on giving…


Reserve your space    Purchase a Gift Certificate


ABOUT THE ARTIST: Originally a native of Montgomery County Virginia, Jesi developed as an artist in Tidewater, Virginia and is a self-taught water-colorist. She graduated summa cum laude from Virginia Tech with degrees in mathematics, education and fine art, with a focus in painting and drawing. Other than instill a passion for creative expression, she states her formal training did not prepare her to be a water-colorist.  She slowly explored and fell in love with the transparent world of watercolor. Her backwards approach in applying dark colors first onto white paper is a style referred to as “full value” and her aim is to establish this “full value” in the beginning and leave areas unpainted to allow completion of the painting to the viewer’s mind’s eye.


Her workshops center on general watercolor introduction, portrait watercolor classes or classes based around sea life. She designed a workshop in conjunction with college students at the NC Coastal Studies Institute and had a one-month residency for the Bryan Cultural Series that included a month long exhibit and working in the community and schools. She designed a program for “en plein air”and held workshops in Southern France as well as Tuscany, Italy. She is an experienced teacher having taught Advanced Placement Studio Arts and worked with all skill levels and interests.


The focus of the workshop is ALLA PRIMA – an exploration of the importance of water to achieve unique characteristics of a watercolor painting. Alla Prima means “wet in wet”.  Beyond drawing an accurate shape, determining the value and mature color and adjusting for either a hard or soft edge of each section of one’s subject, an interesting painting also needs to include this unique quality of transparency. This transparency only occurs with proper use of one’s water. This creative workshop will introduce exercises to help you practice these techniques in order to employ them in our still life or landscape painting.


Among numerous achievements and recognition, Jesi’s recent awards include:

  • Fabre Birren National Color Competition- First Place and
  • MOSS Art Center -New River Binenale-First Award of Excellence


A materials list will be provided for the workshop.


“I have taken classes with Jesi through the LLI program at VT. She is a fantastic instructor for all levels of watercolor.  As a beginner I have learned fundamentals of watercolor as well as techniques.  She has worked with every student to broaden their comfort zone.  You will learn and have fun at the same time.” Lynn Hayes


Learn more here & use this link to BOOK NOW.

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