Art and Morrocan Cooking Retreat with The Talented Artist Yvonne Ankerman

Art and Morrocan Cooking Retreat with The Talented Artist Yvonne Ankerman
21 to 29 September 2023

This Art Retreat will be all about recording your travel experience in Morocco with sketches and watercolours in your own Travel Journal. It is all about the creative journey, to have pleasure in creating, letting go and having fun.

Through a journal one can express the feeling of the sun, heat, sand, exotic colours, fabric, tastes and smells, without there being any pressure of completing a “polished” work or art.

This is your journal and diary that you can look back on in years to come, and live through the magical experience all over again.

There is nothing like a “change of scenery”, to get the creative juices flowing, and what better way than in Exotic Morocco.

Teaching process:

My teaching process consist of a combination of demonstrations, tips on the use of watercolour, observation and selecting your subject, composition and colour.

As everyone of us is unique. it is about developing in your own personal style As well as constant guidance, I love painting and sketching with my students, so we are a relaxed group and you will always see what I am painting. Come and enjoy the Morocco Ecoway Experience with me


I am a full time artist, specializing in plein air, ( painting and sketching out doors ) , travel sketching and journaling. I have hosted Art Retreats and workshops for many years, for beginners and accomplished artist alike.

For the past seven years, I have been the Artist in Resident aboard the “MS Expedition”, a passenger and expedition ship, traveling to the Polar regions, West Africa and South America.

I offer Art workshops to an international clientele, onboard, witnessing and capturing this fragile environment, on paper.

In 2010 and 2019 I was selected as artist in residence at the well renownInternational Cite des Arts” in Paris, France, learning and participating with fellow artists from around the world.

I have a diploma in Art and is an “Associate of the Watercolour Society of South Africa”.

Instagram: @yvonneankerart


Day 1

Arrival in Airport Casablanca or Marrakech at the Marrakech-Menara International Airport. after the meeting , the departure will take place towards Ouarzazate(about 200 km from Marrakech). taking the road which passes through the High Atlas mountain range. On our way we will drive through the Tizin’Tichka pass, at an altitude of more than 2200 m and which links the valley of the Tensiftwadi in the north, to the Asif Ounila valley a semi-arid region in the southeast. We will stop for the night in Aït-ben-Haddou, located in the Ounila valley and which is the traditional crossing point for caravans connecting Marrakech to the south of the Sahara.

Day 2

"The Ksar": Here we will begin our first sketches of Aït Ben Haddou from the panoramic terrace of our luxurious guest house . In the afternoon we shall visit the historic city and sketch in the shaded alleys and along the wadi (river). At the end of the day, we will leave Ait-ben-Haddou to arrive at one of the largest palm groves in Morocco where we will spend the night.

Day 3

Skoura "The Palm Grove": In the morning we will discover the splendor of the date palms and the sheltered fruit and olive trees that cover over than 27km square. The local population will warmly welcome you, adding to your feeling of well-being, all this under the heat from the Moroccan sun. The palm grove..... with its flora and its kasbahs, will provide many subjects for the second page of your travel journal.

Day 4

"The Souq" weekly market : We will visit the souk where traveling merchants, artisans, blacksmiths, leather products and everyday goods of all kinds can be found.  After a painting session, immersed in the middle of this Moroccan market we will be on our way to the Gorges Dades, located at the foot of the High Atlas and side by side the anti atlas.  then we will continue on towards the Dades Gorges which carve their way through the mountains creating impressive cliffs. In Todgha, you will be facing two steep cliffs of 300 meters’ high, separated by a narrow corridor of around twenty meters: this is an unforgettable spectacle to draw, paint or photograph.

Day 5

The drive from Tineghir to Merzouga (renown for the highest dunes in the world) passes by a succession of ksour and oasis. This region was one of the compulsory crossing points for caravans of slaves and gold traffic from Sudan and Guinea. Your caravan awaits you for a one hour trip on the back of a camel to watch the sunset from the top of a dune....

Day 6

Departure from Merzouga to take the direction of our lodging in Skoura, via Tafilalet and Rissani the region of Jewish and Muslim Saints. The whole day would be on the road with full of surprises and adventures.

Day 7

The Kasbahs of Skoura ": Amridil ". Continue working on your travel journal. this day would be evolving about the traditional architecture and moroccan lifestyle, which you can picture in your artwork. One of Morocco’s grandest kasbahs, this 17th-century marvel once appeared on the 50 dirhams note bank. Signposted just a few hundred metres from the main road, this living museum showcases traditional kasbah life over the centuries.

Day 8

The eight day is a relaxing morning spent at the guest house to finalize your travel journal finishing sketches, painting, collages and the layout with the advice of the teacher. Lunch break. In the afternoon, free time and an opportunity to shop for souvenirs, or simply let the song of the birds guide your steps in the palm grove. Last night in Skoura.

Day 9

It is hard to say goodbye. but, this is the farewell day...Transfer to Marrakech-Menara International Airport. or Casablanca


Why you will love this trip

• With the help of a local guide, you will have the impression of going back in time to the Middle Ages wandering the labyrinthine medina of Ait Ben Haddou, Skoura and Merzouga.

• Take the opportunity to travel through the spectacular red dunes of the Sahara by camel and have an unforgettable sunset experience.

• Djemaa el-Fna Square in Marrakech is a city within the city. Explore one of the largest meeting places in the world, joining the night carni

val atmosphere of fortune tellers, dancers and healers.

Skoura is a town in Ouarzazate Province, Drâa-Tafilalet, Morocco. Skoura is a fertile oasis lined with immense palm groves. The Kasbah Amerhidil is part of Skoura palm grove alongside more.

Our services

Lodging: Gîte, Kasbah in the heart of the valleys and palm groves Technical support and overall support during all your travels.


**-In case of withdrawal by a participant within 90 days of commencement of the workshop, the amount already paid will not be refunded.

**-In case of cancellation of the trip by the organisers, a new date will be proposed. Any participant who cannot avail of the new date will be fully refunded of the sum already paid.

**-In the event the organisers cancel the trip with no alternative date proposed, all sums paid by the participant will be fully refunded.


The beauty of sketching is that your materials are light, easy to travel with and don't have to be expensive.

You become less precious and more relaxed as you haven’t spent a fortune on materials.

The more simple the materials, the quicker it gets to make decisions on what to paint or draw

Sketchbook:Watercolour paper

A5 size ( +-21 cm by 14 cm OR +- 8 by 6 inches )

Thickness 300g or 400g


Fine liner waterproof black pen size: 3 and 8 ( Uni pin/ball or other )

AND/OR fountain pen with waterproof black ink

AND/OR Artline Calligraphy, water resistant pen size 2 or 3

Posca pen white: 0.7 mm

OR Gellyroll size 8 or 10 ( sakura Japan or similar )

OR any white pen you have that will draw on top of watercolour


2 or 4 B and putty razor

Charcoal Pencil: Soft, 4 or 6 B


A set of 12 colours are normally fine., Make sure you have some mixing wells in your palette.

I use the following:

I have a 16 well portable palette

I buy tubes of the colours I prefer and squeeze them into the wells of my palette. Any brand you have ( I have a mixture of Daniel Smith, Windsor Newton )

Pans are fine as well

The colours that we would mostly use in Morocco are the following:

A warm and cool red: Scarlet red and Alizarin Crimson

A warm Yellow Cadmium type

A warm and cool blue: Cerulean and Ultra Marine

Burn sienna


Yellow Ocher or Quinacridone yellow

Sap Green


Quinacridone Rose

Possible one or two guest colours


I mostly use the flat 18 and round 8 and a de vinci mop brush no: 2 and 4 and a Round no: 8 and 4 But these are not all necessary

Bring the brushes you would normally use and already have


Small can of “hairspray” to “fix” the charcoal pencil so it doesn’t smudge

Portable water container ( collapsibleplastic camping cup )

Small spray bottle

Paper towel

4 paper clamps/clips, to prevent your pager blowing in the wind

Portable, compact chair ( a three legged fisherman/camping chair is perfect or other )

Sun Hat and sun protection


Workshop Trip 9 days / 8 nights all inclusive:

This price includes:

- More than 40 hours of lessons spread over 9 days for a maximum group of 15 people

- Airport / Hotel transfers

- (air-conditioning) 17-seater vehicle with driver

- official licend tourist guides

- Full board accommodation, single room & double room for couples (all rooms have a private bathroom)

- Tourist taxes to be paid on site

- Cocktails / henna party

-Traditional hamam

Accompanying Person Trip 9 days / 8 nights all inclusive:

- Full board accommodation, single room & double room for couples (all rooms have a private bathroom)

- Airport / Hotel transfers

- (air-conditioning) 17-seater vhicle with driver

- official licend tourist guides

- Tourist taxes to be paid on site

- Cocktails / henna party

-Traditional hamam

These prices do not include:

- Roundtrip flights to Marrakech or Casablansa

- Painting equipment

- Entrance fees to monuments

- On-site purchases.