October 31-November 2

Background Experimentation

Instructor: Winnie Givot

Offered in partnership with the Watercolor Society of Oregon

Workshop Description

In this Backgrounds Workshop we will play with different backgrounds, learning to create various ones, experimenting to see which might support a subject, finding how to connect subject and background so the eye can move through our paintings, and seeing how backgrounds can be used to create excellent compositions.

Cost to Attend

Costs posted are all-inclusive of workshop fee, lodging (or a site-use fee for commuters), and 6 meals.

$560  for a Double Occupancy Room

$485 for a Triple Occupancy Room

$430 for Commuter (class, site-use fee, and 4 meals)



About Winnie

Passionate about watercolor, Winnie Givot is a highly skilled artist who paints wherever she finds beauty, whether in a face, flower or mountain stream.

Sometimes people say, "Watercolor is the hardest medium" as if to ask why do you do that.  But Winnie finds that painting in watercolor is like a dance. In oils, say, when an artist puts down a stroke it stays there, just where it is placed. But in watercolor, when one brush stroke is placed next to another still-wet stroke, they mingle, flowing together, creating effects you can get no other way. She revels in this dance, watching the transparent colors flow and play, experimenting to see what will happen if the colors are applied just so, if the brush is held another way for dry brush or drips, manipulating edges to be hard or soft, thus guiding the eye through a painting and creating beautiful variations of color and texture.

Although Winnie Givot has been an artist her whole life, she didn't know it. When she went away to college, her father told her "to do something useful." She became an economist. Although it was many years before she discovered her passion for watercolor, she always found ways to create beauty, with food and gardens, with silversmithing, theater costume and design. Today, as she sees and paints what resonates in her, she understands the importance of art, of how it feeds us, inspires us, and brings us to a new level of being. "Now that is useful."

In 2000, Winnie Givot presented a painting to the Chilean Congress (for which she received their Congressional Medal), and in 2002 she took 24 paintings to Washington DC which were presented to Congressmen and women as inspiration - that instead of basing decisions on greed and fear, they work to find new responses and solutions and for making decisions which honor the highest in ourselves and all others.

More than 900 of her paintings are in collections internationally, a few of which are those of Pres. & Mrs. Joseph Biden, Pres. & Mrs. Barack Obama, Pres. & Mrs. George W. Bush, Colin Powell, Deepak Chopra, Senator Ron Wyden, United Parcel Service, Colorado College, Harley Brown, Gov. & Mrs. John Kitzhaber as well as the Congress of Chile. Her paintings have been included in numerous solo shows and national and international juried exhibitions.
Winnie Givot is a signature member of Northwest Watercolor Society and Watercolor Society of Oregon and belongs to National Watercolor Society, Western Federation of Watercolor Societies, and Plein Air Painters of Oregon and. She has been included in Who's Who in America and Who's Who in the World and has been awarded Marquis Who's Who Lifetime Achievement Award.
She is currently president of the Watercolor Society of Oregon


Monday, October 31

12:00 PM PM Check in Wright Hall

1:00 PM – Welcome & Orientation & Opening Session

6:00 PM – Dinner

7:00 PM


8:00 AM – Breakfast

9:00 AM – Morning Studio Sessions

12:00 Noon – Lunch

1:00 PM – Afternoon Studio Sessions

4:00 PM – Free time

6:00 PM – Dinner

7:00 PM – Individual time to paint, rest, etc.

10:00 PM – Quiet time

Wednesday, November 2

8:00 AM – Breakfast

9:00 AM – Morning Studio Session

12:00 Noon – Lunch

1:00 PM – Closing Session

4:00 PM – Workshop concludes, check out, depart for home


Pictures from past painting workshops at Menucha: