Formally known as “Tuscany: A Journey for the Senses”, our programs were originally based in the Val d’Orcia of southern Tuscany.
Artful Journeys' programs have recently expanded to include art and cooking workshops, music and cultural tours throughout Europe, and more domestic cultural trips.
Owner & Director
Years ago, it was suggested to Joan that she might offer an art program, and she jumped at the chance of a lifetime. Bringing together all of her life's passions, the development and administration of Artful Journeys is an exhilarating process for Joan.
Joan was born and raised in the apple country of the Hudson River Valley in New York; her father was a gentle, very tolerant, educated land surveyor, and her mother was the efficient business administrator and home engineer. The youngest of four children, Joan was encouraged to pursue anything she wanted, but also to do her best. Sometimes that was very difficult, especially succeeding three very accomplished siblings.
A Closer Look at Joan's Life Passions:
Earning her Bachelor’s of Arts in German Literature afforded Joan a reason to travel, and she does so often
and with great joy.
She has had an eclectic career, including leatherwork, medical research, and small business administration. Currently, she has a bookkeeping business for architects and other small professional firms in New England.
Fostering her lifelong passion for music, Joan continues to study the piano, encourages her son on the viola, and supports classical chamber groups.
She has developed a penchant for collecting art and has recently created some pottery of her own under the tutelage of her friend, Gail Turner.
Concurrently, another passion has developed: a deep love of Italy, its culture, language, people, and culinary aspects.
Carla is a world traveler with a passion for art. Always toting a camera, Carla is a professional portrait, business, and travel photographer. She loves to share her passion for culture and art through her photography and is always more than happy share tips and tricks to capturing the perfect shot. She is very excited to be Co-Director for Artful Journeys and is already starting to plan future Journeys. Carla owns her own portraiture business and is also the President of the Women's Networking Alliance.
Amanda has recently joined the office staff at Artful Journeys, and she is organizing our information systems here. Amanda has many talents which she puts to use as a sales rep, host, and social media manager in various volunteer positions on Cape Cod. She is also a great babysitter! We look forward to putting her talent to good use and modernizing Artful Journeys.
"I've always been influenced by the power of images to express ideas and emotions. Painting is a process of discovery and decision making where disparate elements pull together until the image is clearly expressed."
Eli Cedrone has spent her lifetime creating. A graduate of the School of Art & Design in Boston, she studied art in Italy and at the School of the MFA, Boston. Her professional career began as an art director at Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising, Bermuda, followed by work as an illustrator and mixed-media artist in Laguna Beach, CA. Her work has been exhibited nationwide and she is a popular workshop instructor in the Alla Prima method. Contemporary Realism would best describe her style. Two powerful influences have been the Spanish impressionist, Joaquin Sorolla and Richard Diebenkorn. Others include Nicolai Fechin, Anders Zorn, John Singer Sargent.
Growing up in New York, surrounded by the flavors of the world, Liza developed a love for food and cooking. After fulfilling a career in outdoor education, she decided to explore her passion for food. Liza studied at The French Culinary Institute and then trained with some of the top chefs in New York City before being drawn to the mountains of Colorado. She joined the team at Food Lab, in Boulder, in the spring of 2016. There she teaches cooking skills and technique to all ages as well as curriculum development for the educational programs.
Clarinetist & Instructor
Among the most distinguished classical artists of his generation, clarinetist Jon Manasse is internationally recognized for his inspiring artistry, uniquely glorious sound and charismatic performing style.
Recent season highlights include return performances with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra and debuts with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Erie Philharmonic, The Chappaqua Orchestra, Montana’s Missoula Symphony Orchestra and Oregon’s Rogue Valley Symphony. With pianist Jon Nakamatsu, he continues to tour throughout the United States as half of the acclaimed Manasse/Nakamatsu Duo. The Duo’s activities include the world premiere performances of Paquito D’Rivera’s The Cape Cod Concerto with Symphony Silicon Valley, conducted by Leslie B. Dunner.
Pianist & Instructor
American pianist Jon Nakamatsu continues to draw unanimous praise as a true aristocrat of the keyboard, whose playing combines elegance, clarity, and electrifying power. A native of California, Mr. Nakamatsu came to international attention in 1997 when he was named Gold Medalist of the Tenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, the only American to have achieved this distinction since 1981. Mr. Nakamatsu has performed widely in North and South America, Europe, and the Far East, collaborating with such conductors as James Conlon, Marek Janowski, Raymond Leppard, Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, Osmo Vänskä and Hans Vonk. He also performed at a White House concert hosted by President and Mrs. Clinton.
Mr. Nakamatsu studied privately with Marina Derryberry and has worked with Karl Ulrich Schnabel, son of the great pianist Artur Schnabel. He is a graduate of Stanford University with a bachelor's degree in German Studies and a master's degree in Education.
Many thanks to all who have helped me make this program a success!
To Larry Hill and my family for their support and enthusiasm.
To Gail Turner, whose pots sparked the concept. (Visit Gail's website: www.millstonepottery.com)
To Dave Bennett, Kara Risk, Jeff Peterson, Robert Linn, and Keith Moskow who allow me flexibility in my other work.
To Eli Cedrone for her excitement and hard work.
To Jonny Wilkin, who mastered the first website.
To Carla Bohnett for her collaborative support and honest, welcoming smile.
To Tori Bohnett for creating this website.
To Sevan Melikyan for following footsteps.
And most of all, to Ma and Dad, for raising me to be giving and believe in myself.
Without these people, Artful Journeys would not be possible.
People often ask -
"Why do I have to go abroad to paint, or design flowers, do yoga...?"
You don't. But if you attend one of our classes, you will actually enter a world of retreat: you will not have to cook dinner for anyone; you will not have to pick up someone else's dirty socks; you will not have to remember to pick up Harry from the soccer game and then go to the dentist and then go home and clean. No, you will be creating the art you love: you will have time to relax; you will be in the company of like-minded individuals; you will have wonderful food and wine served to you every day; you will see one of the most beautiful parts of the world and have a taste of the wonderful local culture. You will stay in lovely hotels. Spas, thermal baths, very old, very photogenic towns, incredible landscapes, sculpture parks and historical places will be at your disposal.
All meals were excellent. Apparent that much thought and selection were put into the planning. Especially liked the convenience of having meals included in the trip package. This negated the need to pay individually and to try and figure out individual meal/drinks cost and gratuities.
Schedule was well planned with tours and activities. Also with adequate downtime for rest and recuperation. Points of interest were well covered and having local resident (Paula Bianco) as our guide was a BIG PLUS. She is a gem! We immediately felt a kinship with her and look forward to revisiting with her or better still, hosting Paula and Alberto on their trip to the United States.
Excellent value! The trip was completely enjoyable. The 8 member group was the right size to get to know our fellow travelers and it was fun and a memorable experience. Came away feeling that it was a great experience and would do it again happily. Joan Hill was a valuable resource. She was on top of our daily activities and timetable with humor and compatibility. Never lost her cool! I think the best evaluator of a trip like this is the reassurance that we were in good hands at all times. Our flight was delayed 2 hours in Chicago and 6 hours in Heathrow. Joan arranged for a driver to meet us at Bologna Airport and he delivered us to Palazzo Trevi. I don't think this could be said of a large packaged tour operator. Thank you, Joan.
Magnificent in all aspects... views, food, death-defying climb, where else could we have experienced that evening? That was indeed special! I can't think of what I liked least on this trip other than the careening cab ride one evening! That was scarier than the Prendiparte Tower Climb.
Paula is a terrific guide, very knowledgeable and relaxed, lots of fun. The tours around Bologna were fun, and Ravenna and Modena were excellent side trips. Having enough time one afternoon to stop for tea was a highlight in the busy week. The wine tasting was unique and very enjoyable.
Best was the variety of places we saw and visiting the local manufacturers/artisans.
Tour and activities - first-rate. I loved the Parmesan and balsamic vinegar tours and thought the gelato tour was fun. Cooking classes: there can always be more of these for me, but I realize that once again, I’m probably an outlier in this category. Trip to Modena: surprisingly enjoyable. I would be happy to return to Modena, now that I’ve learned how to pronounce it. Mosaics: I’ve never known much about mosaics, and now appreciate much better what they are. You showed us truly stunning mosaics.
Value - I think the value for the price paid is excellent.
Tour and Activities were truly amazing. All of the scheduled activities were worth the time, cost, and were high-quality experiences. Even the Expo. It may have taken some time to get in but it was worth the time to see it even if the lines were long. There aren’t that many opportunities to see something like that. It was unique.
The value was close to amazing. I don’t know how you did it, Joan. You really delivered an awful lot for little money considering all we did.