Many artists dream about painting in Italy. Now, as retiring baby-boomers are increasingly taking up “brush and pallet knife,” more than ever, painting in Italy is the “thing.” Every day, a new “Artist’s” tour of Italy crops up in travel sections of the newspaper and on the Internet. But there still remains a majority of artists who prefer to “go it alone.” They are independent in their artistic styles, and prefer to be independent regarding their travels in Italy . This blog intends to target these free spirited artists who still need guidance to the best places to paint, especially those idyllic gems that are little known and less traveled. Certainly, independent travelers who are not artists will also benefit from this blog.

With a few exceptions, this blog is not a guide to restaurants, lodging, rental cars, or shopping, (except for art supplies.)

Sprinkled among the posts are: my paintings, and a few Italian proverbs and poems written by notable Italian authors for whom I work as a translator.

Please visit my website to view my original art:


Giclee prints of my paintings, ranging from greeting size to poster size, can be purchased at:


Saturday, April 24, 2010


Regretfully, too many artists who travel to Tuscany neglect the Florentine environs. One of my favorites is Montecatini. Montecatini Terme, located 19 miles NE of Florence, is a charming Tuscan town set among the verdant hills of the Valdinievole Valley and known primarily for its thermal spas, mud baths, and the finest mineral waters in Europe.
This town is all about cleansing the body and mind, so it’s the perfect environment to get those creative juices flowing.
The 19th-century Tettuccio spa has beautiful gardens in which you can set up and paint while sipping the curative waters.
For an unruffled day of painting drive up to Montecatini Alto. If you are without wheels, you can take the funicular cable car from Viale Diaz. The Tuscan panoramas from this scenic hillside town are hard to beat. On a clear day you can see Florence. Dotted across this multihued landscape you'll see olive groves, vineyards, Florentine castles, and hillside villa estates.
If landscape painting isn’t your thing, the narrow streets will lead you to the picturesque main piazza, named for the poet Giuseppe Giusti. It was in this piazza that Verdi wrote the last act of Otello / Othello so you know it’s a setting conducive to great works. There are a few bars in the piazza with outside seating where you are welcome to sketch at a table while munching panini and sipping a glass of the local wine, which, by the way is excellent. Wine bottled for export, must, by law, contain nitrates that work as a preservative. The local wine doesn't contain those pesky nitrates that result in a "wine headache."

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


The painting below depicts a deserted calle in Venezia, just a few steps from the tourist-choked Piazza San Marco. You can view this painting on my art website:
(Originale acrilico 36x28cm dipinto su tela) Un calle tranquillo a Venezia, pochi passi dalla Piazza San Marco. Si può vedere il quadro al mio website:


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