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The Inner Portrait


From €2415* private room  (includes tuition, models, accommodation & meals)

From €1950* per person twin share (includes tuition, models, accommodation & meals)

*Includes 22% VAT

May 21 - May 27 

(5 days tuition, 6 nights accommodation)

Instructor: Henrik Uldalen

Location: Casa Berti, Lucca

Level: Intermediate to Advanced

Medium: Oil on panel

Workshop in Italy with Henrik Uldalen May 2017

Henrik Aarrestad Uldalen is known internationally for his evocative portraiture, and this residential workshop offers the unique opportunity to spend 5 days studying with Henrik and 6 nights living together with Henrik and your fellow students in an Italian villa in Lucca, Tuscany.   


Drawing on Henrik's own process, the workshop will focus on a variety of techniques and ways to express yourself with oil paint. You will paint the portrait from life as well as from photos. During the course of the week you will cover some of the traditional techniques of representational painting as well as expressive and impulsive techniques, and then explore how to merge the two.


This workshop is suitable for intermediate to advanced painters, and for those who want to extend themselves beyond traditional representational portraiture to convey not just what you see, but also an inner emotional life. You will work with a live model for 3 hours each day (one female and one male model), and then take reference photos that you will work from to achieve abstracted elements.

Each night we will all dine together at Casa Berti. In your free time between the workshop and dinner each day you can swim in the pool, go for a walk in the hills, or explore the local area. 

Location & accommodation

The location for this workshop is Casa Berti, a 17th Century Tuscan villa 14km from the beautiful Renaissance city of Lucca. The property has a swimming pool, onsite art studio, billiards table, and movie room. Walking trails lead from the property into the hills of the Garfagnana and there are many beautiful hiking/walking opportunities. Double and twin rooms are available.  

What's included 

Five days of tuition, 6 nights accommodation, transfers on the first and last day of the workshop, and meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner and some wine). For examples of meals click here.  


Non-participating travelling partners 

You are welcome to bring a partner or friend who is not participating in the course. Rates for non-participating partners include accommodation, transfers and all meals (see Pricing & Accommodation below for more information).

What to bring 

For this workshop you will need to bring a laptop or tablet. We also recommend that you bring cash for incidentals of approximately 15-20 euros  per day. 


You have the choice to either bring your own materials or to purchase the materials package from us on arrival. The full materials package costs 120 euro, the cost for the paints-only package is 85 euro.


Materials list:

  • Palette, palette knife and medium cups.

  • Brushes: flats or filberts in various sizes from 4mm to 12mm

  • Oil paints: titanium white, lamp black, yellow ochre, burnt sienna, cadmium red, alizarin crimson, olive green, manganese blue, ultramarine. Recommended brands include Michael Harding, Old Holland or Windsor & Newton.


We will provide your panels, medium, solvent and easels.

Your instructor

Henrik Aarrestad Uldalen (1986) is a self-taught artist whose creative production revolves around traditional representational figurative painting, presented in a contemporary manner. Henrik explores the dark sides of life: nihilism, existentialism, longing and loneliness, juxtaposed with fragile beauty. The atmosphere in his subject matter is often presented in a dream or limbo-like state, with elements of surrealism. His focus is on atmospheres rather than narratives and realism, leaving his paintings open for many interpretations. Born in South Korea and growing up in Norway, Henrik now lives and works in London.

Portrait workshop in Italy with Henrik Uldalen

Workshop itinerary

Day 1  | May 21

Pick up from Lucca train station at 4pm

Orientation and welcome dinner


Day 2  | May 22

9:30am-12:30pm: Introduction to the medium, colours and techniques. You will start with portrait painting from life in black and white (female model), and then take reference photos of the model that you will work from parallel to painting from life during the week.

1pm: Lunch

2pm-5pm: Working on concepts and compositions.

5pm-8pm: Free time

8pm: Dinner

Day 3  | May 23

9:30am-12:30pm: Starting to work from your photos, with reference also to the model,  learn different techniques for achieving abstracted elements.

1pm: Lunch

2pm-5pm: Continue working on abstraction techniques.

5pm-8pm: Free time

8pm: Dinner

Day 4  | May 24

9:30am-12:30pm: Continue working on your main painting from the photo.

1pm: Lunch

2pm-5pm: Painting from life in colour (male model).

5pm-8pm: Free time

8pm: Dinner

Day 5  | May 25

9:30am-12:30pm: Continue working on your main painting from the photo 

1pm: Lunch

2pm-5pm: Second life painting session with the male model.

5pm-8pm: Free time

8pm Dinner

Day 6  | May 26

9:30am-12:30pm: Bring your painting from the photo to a conclusion.

1pm: Lunch

2pm-5pm: A final life painting session, with a female model.

5pm-8pm: Free time

8pm Dinner

Day 8  | May 27

Departure, transfer to Lucca train station at 10am



Start: May 21, 2017


End: May 27, 2017


Skill level:  Intermediate to Advanced


From €2415 private room
From €1950 pp twin share  

Includes: tuition, 

accommodation, meals, transfers


Via di Mastiano e Giuliano

5007, Lucca, Italy

Bookings:  Click on Accommodation & Pricing below


Contact us:

IT: +39 347 333 9931

UK: +44 7492 901 919

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Accommodation, pricing & registration


To view accommodation options and to register for this painting retreat with Henrik Uldalen, please click on Accommodation & Pricing below to be taken to our secure booking and payment site. We accept payment by PayPal or credit card.

Important notes for those travelling with a partner/friend:


if you are travelling with a partner/friend who is also participating in the workshop and you wish to share a room, please register together and select Guests in Room=2 when choosing your accommodation. This is to ensure you are charged the appropriate rate for twin-share accommodation. If you and your friend are travelling together but each wish to have your own private room, then please register separately.


If you are travelling with a non-participating partner, please select Guests in Room=1, and then check the box for the optional item "I will be bringing a partner/friend who is not participating in the workshop". Do not select Guests in Room=2 or you will be charged the rate for 2 workshop participants.


All retreats and workshops require a non-refundable deposit of €500 to be paid at the time of registration. Your place is confirmed once the deposit is received. The remaining balance is due 8 weeks prior to the start of the workshop. If you are booking less than 8 weeks from the scheduled start date, the full fee must be paid at the time of registration. Please refer to our Terms and Conditions of booking for details and our cancellation policy.

If you have any questions about the workshop, or about the registration and payment process, please email us at

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