Paint­ing as a hob­by has been around for cen­turies, but did you know it has many health ben­e­fits too? As well as aid­ing phys­i­cal re­lax­a­tion, re­search has shown that paint­ing and draw­ing can in­crease self-es­teem, im­prove fine mo­tor skills and boost brain ac­tiv­i­ty, and may even help to stave off de­men­tia, as we grow old­er. Be­ing im­mersed in a cre­a­tive en­dea­v­or such as paint­ing can al­so low­er your stress lev­els and gives your over­worked brain a much-need­ed break from the wor­ries of mod­ern life. Heck, if pick­ing up a paint brush helped Churchill ‘for­get the dark wor­ries and heavy bur­dens of po­lit­i­cal strife’ dur­ing World War II then it’s more than like­ly go­ing to help you for­get that bad day in the of­fice.

Of course there are a lot of mis­con­cep­tions about art… main­ly that you’re ei­ther good at it or you’re not. Most peo­ple, when asked, will say they can­not paint, but as with most things, they can. By def­i­ni­tion, if you can hold a paint­brush you can paint. Na­t­u­ral­ly, some peo­ple will be bet­ter at it than others, but what does it mat­ter if your work of art looks noth­ing like those in the Na­tio­n­al Gallery or Musée d’Or­say? Your re­ju­ve­nat­ed spir­it and healthy blood pres­sure with thank you for it any­way!

Feel­ing in­spired? From 2017 Clos Mira­bel Manor, will be of­fer­ing re­lax­ing, in­spir­ing and fun-filled resi­den­tial paint­ing cours­es for groups of adults wish­ing to un­leash their in­n­er Van Gogh with renowned lo­cal artist, Xavi­er Mi­col. The cours­es will take place on The Clos Mira­bel Es­tate in Ju­rançon, Pau, in the foothills of the Pyrénées. They will fo­cus on Land­s­cape Paint­ing tak­ing in­spi­ra­tion from breath­tak­ing views of the en­tire chain of the Pyrénées At­lan­tiques, with ad­di­tio­n­al work­shops in Por­trai­ture and Still Life. The course con­sists of 20 hours of tui­tion, pro­vid­ed in small groups with a max­i­mum of 12 par­ti­ci­pants and in­cludes one to one ses­sions, ex­cur­sions, lec­tures, meals and ac­com­mo­da­tion.

For more in­for­ma­tion on resi­den­tial paint­ing holi­days at Clos Mira­bel please con­tact us at in­fo@­c­los-mira­bel.com Tel 00 33 55 9 06 32 83

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