Home, bedazzled by zebras

by Mary-Anne Bartlett on March 23, 2018

In the deserts of Namibia, Mary-Anne and guests dazzled the zebras (or was it the other way round?), then blazed a colourful trail through Botswana and painted wet on wet at Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe.

This February’s Art Safari was an extraordinary journey – from the dry Namib desert to the Zambesi in full spate.  With us were several regular urban sketchers who along with the others in the group rapidly took to the challenges of drawing wildlife and to the awesome landscapes and riverscapes of Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe.  

Imagine a group of artists huddled on a ridge, painting the pre-dawn shadows on sand-dunes that reach 300m tall, waiting for washes to dry in the cold desert air.  

Imagine struggling with the stripes of zebras in Okaukuejo waterhole as they drink (disturbing terrapins & dabchicks in the water) only to be so engrossed in the drawing that we didn’t notice a big bull elephant arrive.  

Imagine drawing  the flat horizon of Etosha Salt Pan, broken by two large groups of elephants, playing happily in the wet grasses, then a jackal trotting by as two bulls do battle.  

Imagine sketching a lion just metres off the track, with flamingos and other wading birds in the water just beyond him.  Imagine painting the hippos lolling in the waters of the Chobe as a line of Egyptian geese walk past. 

Imagine the impossibility of painting under the full spray of the Victoria Falls, one of the wonders of the world and laughing as our paint washed off our pages.

We were royally looked after in all our lodges, and had wonderful guides with us.

On our last day at Victoria Falls we took a walk with our sketchbooks, accompanied by elephants.

I stood beside a great bull who was gently flapping his ears – even though I have spent the last 19 years in the company of elephants on Art Safari, I had never stood so close to a fully grown elephant, right under his chin and his enormous ears! 

I had never felt the velocity of the wind produced by their enormous cooling systems – it was impressive indeed.


What a fantastic group we had on this Art Safari and what an amazing painting holiday this has been in Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe.  We will be back again.

{ Comments on this entry are closed }

Visit the AppArt Exhibition

by Mary-Anne Bartlett on March 23, 2018

Before heading off to Malta & Gozo with some of our lucky Art Safari guests in April, Art Safari tutor Roger Dellar is opening AppArt’s Easter Art & Sculpture Exhibition on Friday 30th March.

Roger is one of many distinguished artists with work on view, AppArt’s Easter Exhibition and Sculpture Trail continues to grow in reputation as a showcase for some of the finest artists in the South East.  It is open from 10 am to 4 pm from Friday 31st March (Good Friday) to the 14th April. Entry is free, refreshments are available and a warm welcome is ensured.

For further information go to:  http://www.appartonline.co.uk

Are you a fan of Roger’s work?  If you can be spontaneous there’s still the possibility to join Roger and guests painting in Malta & Gozo this April.  Click through to read all about the Grand Siege Of Malta with artist Roger Dellar from 15 to 22 April 2018 Tour Overview

{ Comments on this entry are closed }

“Can you organise something completely different after the Art Safari, Heidi?”

March 23, 2018

One of our India sketching guests asked Heidi to help her find a cycling extension for her February Art Safari with artist Maxine Relton.  After a comprehensive search nothing fitted the dates.  Not defeated Heidi organised a tailor-made cycling itinerary in Kerala, rustled up two more cyclists and flew to India to join her!  Everyone […]

Read the full article →

Art Safari is growing!

January 10, 2018

Thank you to New Anglia Growth Programme! Over the last years Art Safari has grown enormously, especially as we meet all sorts of new people (guests and colleagues in the art and travel world) who entice us to organise new tours around the world.  So you can imagine how full our computers, sketchbooks, shelves and […]

Read the full article →

Art Safari is world famous – we’re in the international news!

June 2, 2016

The first few days of our Dazzle of Zebras Art Safari stars on the news today – here we are capturing wildlife on Art Safari in Namibia in Euronews .  I hope you enjoy watching us! The piece starts in a cheetah sanctuary near to Windhoek where Mary-Anne Bartlett has been bringing artists into close contact with cheetahs (don’t worry, […]

Read the full article →

Art Safari hits the world news sites!

June 2, 2016

Watch Art Safari in China! http://english.cctv.com/2016/05/31/VIDE9gKny4O6i6tOtskryD3m160531.shtml  

Read the full article →

Travel Republic takes art to Zambia

February 3, 2016

It’s really nice to see that our Zambia Art Safari has been mentioned in the recent blog by Travel Republic as they make wonderful suggestions for how to take your interests and hobbies on holiday.  Where better than Zambia, and what could be better than painting and drawing wildlife and landscape in the sunshine? Read […]

Read the full article →

Resting Frigate

January 29, 2016

While we were sketching seascapes and islands from the deck in the Galapagos, sometimes the frigates would come and rest on the rigging, so close to us that it was possible to sketch them so very close.  Here’s one of Mary-Anne’s.  Their feathers had a wonderful dark red iridescence and their eyes were rimmed with cobalt […]

Read the full article →

The Big Draw 2014 at Art Safari

November 8, 2014

Mark Boyd, Claudia Myatt, Peta Orme, Andrew Casey and I had a brilliant day of drawing and cutting with many visitors of all ages who came to participate in The Big Draw in our studio here at Art Safari in Woodbridge.  The resulting panels would have made Matisse proud of his influence on generations of artists.  This […]

Read the full article →

Congratulations Laney

April 2, 2014

Wildlife Artist of the Year Exhibition at the Mall Galleries, London Mon 2nd – Sat 7th Jun 2014 Congratulations to Kenya and Zambia Art Safari guest Laney Randell who has had her beautiful Rhino painting accepted by the DSWF for the wildlife exhibition at the Mall Galleries in June. We are looking forward to visiting the exhibition […]

Read the full article →