The Living Studio Normandy, France {registration is open}

My heart behind The Living Studio is that we will all learn to explore and create wherever we live.

I hope to inspire people to step out of the comfort of their studios and out into the world and boldly create based upon the beauty all around them.

This unique retreat combines my love of travel and creating and connecting with other women.

I don’t know how many times over the years I had walked past a person sketching in an art museum,

painting in the gardens,

practicing their watercolors in the mountains

or writing at a cafe and I have stopped a moment to envy them.

They were doing it!

They HAD to be creative.

It is a practice and a preparedness that motivates you to create your studio wherever you go.

With practice and always having your tools with you…you live your creativity and the world becomes your studio.

Few places have changed my creative heart as much as France so it is my joy to announce my collaboration with Cat of Sunday Brocantes to offer you The Living Studio | Normandy, France!

Here is a peek into this luxury creative retreat!

Are you a writer, a photographer, a painter, a sketcher ?

Are you just starting to embrace your creativity or have you jumped in all of the way?

No matter how your creativity is expressed or the level in which you practice it…this retreat is for you!

October 9th-16th 2015

Your trip begins in charming Normandy villages, and stunning seaside resort towns, and concludes with exploring the world renowned Paris Flea Market.

While in Normandy take walks in small local villages, discover French country farms, cider mills and chateau’s, spend a morning experiencing the beauty of Monet’s gardens, take a bike trip along the famous beach-side boardwalk of Deauville. Enjoy an afternoon at the quaint stone French cottage of a local painter and have an aperitif in his private garden. Walk along cobblestone streets and see 300 year old architecture and churches…and absorb the culture of Northwest France.


Partake in local culture at farm markets, stylish bistro’s and fabulous restaurants … Shop for vintage treasures, explore the beauty of the French countryside … You will never just sit in a room and make art. Your art will be created out of exploring and experiencing Normandy. Imagine making art in small villages along the sea, at a cafe, in Monet’s gardens, in an art museum, among ancient ruins, inside a cathedral or in the quiet of the grounds of the manoir.


Each day you will be given prompts that you can use if you choose to be open to the art all around you throughout the villages of Normandy. We will also have a few structured art classes.

Our hope is that this will not just be a retreat…it will be opening up of your heart and mind to creating your studio wherever you go.



Tour dates: Friday, October 9th – Friday, October 16th
• Transportation to and from Paris and all local transportation throughout the tour.
• 6 dinners, 7 lunches at bistros, brasseries and fine restaurants.
• 7 nights accommodations in a classic 18th century seaside Normandy manoir with full service spa facilities, beautifully decorated bedrooms, large private bathrooms, WIFI, and all of the amenities,  breakfast each morning and sea-view outdoor spaces to relax as well as walking distance to the beaches and shops.
• Art inspiration and structured or in-formal instruction in small villages along the sea, at a cafe, in Monet’s gardens, in an art museum, among ancient ruins, inside a cathedral or in the quiet of the grounds of the manoir with Jeanne Oliver.
• Stops at vintage shops, markets and brocantes.
• A visit to Monet’s home and garden and stops to sites frequented by the French Impressionist artists and their students.
• A hosted visit to the home of a French painter, studio tour and aperitif in his charming garden.
• Afternoon strolls in centuries old villages, stops at ancient ruins and stunning cathedrals.
• Expert French speaking native to translate, negotiate, assist and share local cultural information  during your stay.
• An exclusive visit to Rabbit Hill.

October 9th-16th 2015

This retreat is $3995 double / $5495 single US Dollars

A $500 (non-refundable) deposit is due at registration

If you are interested in registering for this retreat or if you have questions please email Jeanne Oliver at

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    1. jeanne Author

      Jill, everyone will be picked up in Paris on October 9th and stay through the 16th. On the 16th we will be coming back to Paris to shop the vintage flea markets. Please let me know if I can answer any questions.

    1. jeanne Author

      Beth, we are hoping to have a smaller group around 15 or so. Can I help you with any other questions?

  1. Cat

    Excited beyond words for this Jeanne! Thrilled to be planning it with you and cannot wait to meet everyone in October!

    1. jeanne Author

      So happy to be collaborating on this retreat with you! You provide such gorgeous retreats and you have such an incredible knowledge with this area of the world. We will all be spoiled!

  2. Janet Stevens

    Here is an odd question – perhaps – is there any umm .. meditative, new agey, sharing personal stories, deep emotional stuff? I prefer not to have this experience… just asking… I love experience trips not delving into my subconscious trips.. hope I am not offending anyone…

    1. jeanne Author

      This is not an odd question at all. No…just good food, creativity, incredible sights, the sea and whatever else you need it to be. Thank you for asking because I am sure someone else was too!

  3. Gayle Olson

    I just returned from Paris and 2 days in Normandy. I made a promise to myself that I would return for a more in depth tour of Normandy and here you are! I take photos, collage, scrap, write and I could pretend to sketch. I will discuss this with my daughter. What a fabulous opportunity for us.

  4. CynfulCreations

    Hi Jeanne. Sounds like you and Cat have put together a fabulous trip. I’m just wondering if the price is for single occupancy or shared accommodations? Thanks!

    1. jeanne Author

      I think so too! The price is for double occupancy. We will be the only party at the manoir. Please do not hesitate to ask any other questions.

  5. gail

    Hi Jeanne, I think this sounds like a beautiful retreat, I enjoy Cat’s blog too! I was wondering if the package includes airfare included? Thanks!

    1. jeanne Author

      Gail, thank you for your interest in The Living Studio|Normandy, France. The cost does not include airfare. Please do not hesitate to contact me about any other questions you might have.

  6. Marguerite

    Sounds heavenly – what is the price for single occupancy please? Do you match people?

    1. jeanne Author

      Marguerite, we will do our very best to match you with someone if you are traveling alone. I will email you the cost for double occupancy. Thank you for your interest. Jeanne

  7. Krista Wardecker

    I am interested. Would you e-mail me the rate for single occupancy? This sou ands like a once in a lifetime opportunity!

  8. Holly

    Wow–envious! Will you ever create summer experiences? I’m an art teacher and can’t possibly miss 10 days of school, but this sounds so heavenly! Keep me posted and have a blast!!

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  10. Carole Prisk

    I am not an artist an I walk with a cane (hip and knee replacement), yet this sounds lovely. Is it something a handicapped person could participate in?

    1. jeanne Author

      Tours are actively paced and require a good deal of walking or time on your feet. It is the responsibility of the tour guest to determine whether or not they are physically able to stay with the group.

  11. melony@chasingjoy

    This is THE trip i’ve been looking for for my daughter and i. I am a writer/photographer, and she a painter/sculptor. It will take us some time to save for the two of us, please tell me you will do this one again!!

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  13. Richella Parham

    Hi Jeanne–

    I just found your blog via a link from my friend Vanessa (At the Picket Fence). This Normandy class sounds wonderful! I have a question for you.

    Of course the art history in this part of France is absolutely amazing, but the other parts of this region’s history are equally moving. My family and I spent a week in Normandy this past July, the fulfillment of a lifelong dream for my husband. Our quest, though, was learning more of the military history of the region.

    I can’t be a part of your tour, but I would be happy to contribute to it (gratis, of course) if you need someone to share some of Normandy’s military (especially 20th century) history with you or your tour participants. For instance, I wrote this post about my own family’s trip:

    Please forgive me if this seems a ridiculous way to introduce myself–this is a particular passion of mine, so I got a bit excited when I read your post!

  14. Jeanne

    Richella: Your mention of military history caught my attention. My father fought at Normandy in World War II. He was seriously injured…and spent the next year in a hospital.

  15. Janice Robinson

    My dad was a ww2 vet. He and his division came to Normandy on D-Day2. He and his men saw the carnage, They went on shore and started the above ground gasoline line to feed the vehicles as they crossed Europe to free the people from Hitler. They guarded the gas line day and night and kept building it following the the troops. His stories were amazing. God was with them. I don’t know how many died in this gasoline endeavor but dad came home. He was not the same person. It was a difficult life with dad. He died at age 92. Normandy is very special.

    Thank you for reading this. Our American WW2 soldiers were all hero’s. Freedom is not free. God bless.

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