Robert Liberace, Sarasota, Florida – The First Night

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Robert Liberace’s “Figure in Oil” workshop was at the Southern Atelier in Sarasota, FL.  I had been  looking forward to this workshop for months.  I had also been dreading it because it came just a few days after I got back from Hawaii.  The jet lag was terrible and I had a lot to do before I left.  I thought I had booked my flight and hotel, but I couldn’t find the reservations anywhere.  Fortunately my assistant made all the last minute arrangements and pushed me out the door.  Thanks, Elliott!

The Southern Atelier

Because we booked everything the day before lots of hotels were sold out.  I ended up staying in the nearby city of Venice.  Actually, “nearby” turned out to be 22 miles away.  After settling in my hotel I decided to do a dry run to the studio, so I would know where I was going in the morning.  I finally made it to to the Southern Atelier (located in an industrial park).  Afterwards, I cruised around Sarasota and found an adorable restaurant called Fish Camp.  It was too cute and the food was fabulous.  It made me feel like I was definitely in the south again.

Unfortunately, I hadn’t read all of Rob’s instructions before leaving for Sarasota.  After reading them on the plane I found out I was supposed to have tinted my canvases before coming to class.  Why do I always need to go to art stores in every city?!  I couldn’t find a real art store so I just went to Micheal’s.  I started tinting my canvases at 11:00 PM that night.  Ugh!

This is Mimi. She handles EVERYTHING!

Rob’s workshop started at 8:30 AM the next day, the earliest start time I have seen of any workshop to date.  The good news was we were not allowed to set up when we got there.  There was a lottery and we were assigned an easel and an area!  Yay!  What a great idea.  I hate competing for a spot.


Shelli Alford is an artist and author, who enjoys learning from master oil painters from around the world and reviewing their classes, workshops and demonstrations.

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