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Sketching & Painting on FRENCH Canals

About Us

June 12 – 18, 2024

Oise Valley, FRANCETo Register...Click Here
Robbie Laird, NWS, SDWS, SLMM, WW
“My paintings provide a
journey into the spirit
of natural connections.
 I want to entice the viewer
to explore beyond a literal
depiction to the rhythm
and intimacy within a

Robbie Laird, an innovative painter, teacher, and  juror., is a full time resident of Lake Almanor, California, and part time  resident of Hilton Head Island, SC.  Her paintings captivate the viewer with an exciting balance of flowing ambiguity and varying amounts of specific detail. Using large brushes and flowing paint, her work dances on the edge of abstraction in areas but pulls you back in others.  She sometimes uses the
unique qualities of flowing transparent pure watercolor to create mysterious rhythmic works, while in other pieces she incorporates a variety of other watermedia.  In addition to painting, she has expressed her vision in: forged metal and wood sculpture as well as leaded glass design and residential architecture.  The continuing source of inspiration for Laird’s work is a lifetime interest in cycles and natural transitions and connections.
Her paintings have received numerous awards in National and International exhibitions.


Laird is a signature member of National Watercolor Society (NWS), where in 2008 her painting was selected for the Loa Sprung Award (top award for Non Objective Painting). She is a signature member of Watercolor West, National Association of Painters of Acrylic, San Diego Watercolor Society, and is a full-juried member of the Society of Layerists in Multi-Media.  She is affiliated with other art associations nationwide.  She is a highly sought after instructor and was named one of 20 Great Teachers of the last twenty years, by American Artists’ Magazine.  Her paintings and articles have been in many publications, including Watercolor Magazine, American Artist, and International Artist Magazine. Her work is included in Splash IV, North Light Books, and Artistic Touch 3 Creative Catalyst Productions produced her video, “The Informed Intuitive Approach”.

Laird has been in numerous solo and group exhibitions.  Her paintings are popular in Hawaii where she shows with the Village Galleries on Maui.  Her paintings have been collected extensively in the US and internationally.

A past president of the National Watercolor Society and the San Diego Watercolor Society, Laird has an extensive background with arts organizations and art education.  After completing her Masters degree in Art Education, Laird became a Fine Arts curriculum consultant, giving workshops for teachers throughout California, the United States, and abroad. For twelve years, she was  the Director of the Kanuga Watermedia Workshops held each spring in North Carolina.  Her influence as an artist and educator continues to grow.


Franco and Kay

Deepen your personal awareness and development as you explore intriguing countries throughout the world. We offer you a unique opportunity to learn from internationally prominent speakers and authors as you immerse yourself in fascinating places.


Kay LatchmanSingh

Kay is the main organizer and logistic expert of this retreat. Her background in international trade and finance and her attention to details will ensure that this will be a quality experience for all. She is in communication with everyone who is a part of this program and makes sure that all aspects of this endeavor are synchronized. Kay is also in charge of participant wellness and takes care of everyone from the time they register until they are back home. Kay is the co-owner and vice-president of Global Journeys. She provides a wealth of experience in travel and cultural connections. Kay was born and educated in British Guyana, moved to the U.S. and has traveled and worked with people in many European countries, Russia, Egypt, South Africa, British West Indies, and Central America. Her knowledge and connections with various cultures is a wonderful asset as she works with and teaches a variety of people. Her vision of providing service to those in need and doing so in a celebratory way certainly is a foundation of this retreat.

Franco Marini

Franco Marini is a professor at the Daniels College of Business and works with the University of Denver on several educational experiential projects. He created and operates Global Journeys Inc., a travel-based company providing personal and professional growth through specialized travel offerings. One of Marini’s strongest attributes is his ability and knowledge of how to empower human development as it impacts the enhancement of individual strenghts and results of an organization. One of his primary focal points is working with the attributes and contributions of individuals and empowering each participant to effectively break through bariers to achieve a level of being their very best.