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Painting Day of the Dead

October 29-November 4, 2024 

A seven day art retreat with landscape painter Nina Weiss

in stunning San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

Join us this fall for Day of the Dead, one of the most important and visually stunning holidays in Mexico. The town of San Miguel is full of spectacle and activity with elaborate altars, "catrina" parade, Day of the Dead markets and marigolds everywhere!

  • Let the holdiay and  sun- drenched town of San Miguel Allende serve as your muse and inspiration.

  • A  review of color and light will help students understand how color under natural light works on our environment.

  • Students will learn to utilize techniques such as  layering, optical mixture, broken brushstroke, 

and glazing as a new and exciting way to represent color.

  • Students will build strong, effective paintings by studying  ideas about composition, gesture, and thumbnail sketches.

  •  Technical guidance in all color mediums is provided

 including gouache, acrylic, oils, pastels, and colored pencils.

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Retreat Venue

San Miguel de Allende, located in central Mexico is a Heritage UNESCO puebla magica, not to mention voted one of the best places in the world to live by Conde Nast Traveler two years in a row. Come and be captivated by the friendliness and beauty of this town! Linda Laino has lived in  San Miguel for twelve years and is helping Nina facilitate the retreat.

More on San Miguel below.


We are sure you will be delighted with the accommodations and facilities! Hacienda de las Flores is a family owned, old-world style hotel in the heart of centro making it a super convenient and easy home base from which to explore San Miguel. 


About Nina Weiss

Nina Weiss is a nationally renowned artist who has been painting and drawing the landscape for over 50 years. She holds a BFA from the Tyler School of Art and graduate study at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Nina teaches workshops throughout the United States; and travels with students each year to teach her European Landscape Painting & Drawing Workshops. 

She exhibits widely, and her work is held in private and corporate collections throughout the

United States.

A few scenes from Nina's previous retreats in San Miguel



Hacienda de las Flores was so comfortable and welcoming. The gardens, so beautiful and the subject of one painting on location. El Pavo Real Winery was such a treat, offering such wonderful views of the mountains and countryside where we were served a delicious lunch and wine, of course! We had a memorable trip and I am looking forward to other adventures that Nina and Linda put together!~ Christiane

"I want to thank you for a fabulous workshop.  Not only are you a great teacher, but you were very patient with me as a beginner.  I know I have a lot to learn, and feel lucky that I started off with you to give me a good foundation." ~ Ora 


"Thank you for all the hard work you do to make the workshop so interesting, challenging and rewarding. " ~  Jenny 

Please click on the button for information on pricing and Early Bird Discount!


  • Workshop with Nina

  • Six nights accommodations

  • All taxes and hotel tips

  • Shuttle service to/from airport

  • Breakfast daily

  • Arrival dinner 

  • Sketch +lunch + taxi excursion

        to  ​El Pavo Real Vineyard

  • Farewell Dinner

   Not Included

  • ​Airfare

  • Travel insurance

  • Meals

   (except where indicated)​

OPTIONAL: Professsional

face painting at hotel in

preparation for the Catrina



Please make your reservations to arrive at

Leon (BJX) or Queretaro(QRO) airports.* Information about easy and reliable shuttle service will be shared with participants. Please note, if you decide to fly into Mexico City, it is another four hours to San Miguel.

*Note: Please wait to make your flight arrangements until we inform you the retreat is full.

About San Miguel de Allende

Mexico is a huge country that offers its visitors an amazing amount of diversity. San Miguel de Allende is located in the geographical center of the country and is said to be built upon a bed of crystal quartz. Many people believe this legend aids in the “magical” quality so often associated with this town. San Miguel is a peaceful, safe environment, full of friendly people, sophistication and charm to spare. It is small, but far from sleepy. The streets are always full of visitors and locals in a lively and festive atmosphere.

There is more than plenty to see and do on off hours during the retreat. Most days you can count on very cool mornings, warm to hot sunny afternoons, and slightly cooler evenings. Think layers and bring a light sweater. There is virtually no humidity. San Miguel is quite hilly in parts, and the streets are cobbled. You will most likely be doing a lot of walking (the best way to see the town!), so we suggest to bring good shoes.

We are at 6000 feet and if you have not been in high altitudes, you may feel a bit tired the first day or two. Luckily, there are numerous cafes, parks and plazas for rest and refreshments all over town. There are also ample and inexpensive cabs (and Uber) available should you need a break from the walking. The cab drivers, incidentally are some of the best locals to practice your Spanish with!

The web is full of articles and videos about San Miguel. Here are two to whet your whistle:

"The Best City in the World"

"San Miguel de Allende Travel Guide"

About Linda Laino

Linda is an artist, writer and teacher who received her MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Va. She has lived in San Miguel de Allende for twelve years where she formally taught English Language Arts and continues to paint and write. She has organized writing and painting retreats of her own in San Miguel and is recently sharing her love and knowledge of this charming and colorful town with other artists and teachers. Her many pleasures in San Miguel include terrace cocktails with friends, hiking in the countryside and feeding the hummingbirds. Her painting and writing can be accessed here:

Cancellation Policy Please Review

All deposits and balances for workshops are non-refundable.  We understand that it is sometimes difficult to plan ahead for a trip such as this and these uncertain times have created a bit more challenge. We thank you for your understanding of the need for these policies on our end. We highly recommend you purchase travel insurance. We ask that retreat participants be vaccinated. Note: Mexico never closed its borders to travelers during 2020. 

Please read our full cancellation policy here.

Retreat Waiver

All participants will be asked to download and sign the waiver form and provide emergency contact info. Please email to:

Linda will provide all participants with a "Survival Guide" with lots of info about SMA, recommended restaurants and useful phone numbers.

We look forward to welcoming you to San Miguel in October, 2024! Please do not hesitate to contact us. For questions about the workshop, please contact Nina at For questions about San Miguel, contact Linda at

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