Category Archives: river test

Drawing: Mind, Body and Senses

Holistic Drawing

27th, 28th, 29th April, 2018

At Riverside Cottage, Bransbury, nr Barton Stacey

Drawing is a wonderful, engaging, cerebral affair; you think, you look, you investigate. The aim of this retreat is to engage further; to include your body and your senses in an holistic act of drawing.



Instead of a drawing appearing on the paper from a conjunction of thought and sight alone, you will engage with all your senses, with your breathing, and your body.

IMG_1810You will begin the day with yoga to relax, shed tension and enable you to open yourself to the possibility of drawing with other senses.

You will learn how drawing is enriched when you work from a calm place in mind and body. You will feel the rhythm of your breath, trust the intelligence of your body, learn to release tension and discover a freedom and potential for inventiveness.

This course is suitable for all artistic and yoga abilities.

  • Accommodation provided at £495 sharing, or £595 single room
  • Day time attendance only £350 for Friday afternoon, Saturday and Sunday
  • All catering, all art materials, art and yoga tuition supplied

Plan for the Weekend

Friday 27th April

  • sconeArrive on a Friday afternoon any time
    after 3pm to a Cream Tea, with scones and delicious raspberry and lavender jam.
  • 6pm drinks and drawing games to break the ice (nothing to do with the drinks)
  • 8pm supper



Saturday 28th April

  • 8-10am Breakfast, croissants, fresh fruit, granola, yoghurt and local jams, followed by a country walk, if desired.
  • 30 Yoga – A 1 hour class – a very gentle flow to calm and release the energies within ready for a mind and soul drawing class using all your senses. You do as much yoga as you feel comfortable. Just come to the mat with an open mind and let the power of Yoga work its magic!
  • Following the various yoga exercises you will be exploring drawing, mark making, textures and tone using all your senses. Lavender eye masks will stop you from peaking, and the smells from the Riverside Cottage garden will inspire you in new directions. The studio is overlooking the River Dever so there may be some outside interaction.

We will stop for a light buffet lunch and there will be various coffee breaks throughout the day. You will finish the drawing class at 4.00 in time for tea at 4.30. There will be drinks at 7.00pm, followed by supper at 8.00pm.

Sunday 29th April

IMG_02518-10am Breakfast and walk

10.30am  Yoga

As with day one yoga will set the tone for the day of drawing.

You will have a model to draw using the imaginative, inventive marks and expressions developed in day 1.

There will be various sensory short drawings, and longer exercises  so you will  take away a number of drawings by the end of the weekend.

As with day 1, a light lunch will be at 1.30 with the drawing class resuming for a final session finishing at 4pm.


If you would like more information about this course  please click on these links to contact me, Kate Measham, or Clare Dryden of Riverside Lifestyle.

We look forward to hearing from you.




River Test, Source to Sea, Mottisfont

Friday 4th August

£25/day, (plus entrance fee if you are not already a member of the National Trust) 10.00am to 4.00pm Meet in Mottisfont car park

Join us as we draw and paint the River Test at Mottisfont Abbey


The River Test, as it flows through the Mottisfont Estate, has all the characteristics of a well keepered chalk stream, picturesque as is makes its way through water meadows along the Test Valley. Capture the dreamy atmosphere that places you in an England of a century ago.

And they have cream teas and ice cream.

Contact me for more information

Kate Measham


River Test at Mottisfont

Rhythm Ebb and Flow, A day drawing on the River

Different methods of drawing, different drawing media

Wednesday, 16th August, 2017

10am – 4pm, delicious Yurt Cafe lunch included, £80/day

Suitable for all abilities

Spend a day by the River Test exploring different drawing techniques.  You will be looking at Van Gogh and his mark making and developing your own vocabulary of marks.


You will be working in pencil, charcoal, pen, ink, and anything else we can find to help you capture something of the river and its environment.

Some materials will be provided and I will send a list of others things you will need to bring with you.

A delicious lunch will be included in the Yurt.

Please contact me if you would like more information about this course

Kate Measham


Intrepid Artists


Inventive Anti Rain Devices

Yesterday’s River Test outing was plagued from the start; it was meant to happen a month ago but bad weather and bad diary management meant it had to be postponed.  Yesterday we battled with rain, cattle, TB testing, postmen and equipment falling in the river amongst other excitements. During one downpour the chairs doubled up as umbrellas.


Next month (August)  the plan is to visit Mottisfont – if the weather  is as changeable we can retire to the tearooms.

New Oil Painting Class

Beginners Oil Painting morning

Wednesday 12th July

9.30am – 12.30pm,


Spend the morning in the Yurt by the River Test learning the basic skills for painting in oils.  All materials will be provided. No previous experience is necessary.  This will be a fun, small group designed to give you personal attention, and get you under way with oil painting. Places are limited so contact me for more information, or to book a place.

Kate Measham


Sheep Dip Shallows – The next stop on the River Test, The Source to the Sea

Monday 3rd July 10.00 at The Boot, Houghton



June was rained off, blown away, cancelled. We are going to try Houghton again!

If you mention ‘Houghton’ to fly fishermen they will think you are talking about the illustrious Houghton Fishing Club with its clubroom over the entrance to the Grosvenor in Stockbridge. The club owns some of the most renowned fishing on the river Test from Stockbridge, downstream through Houghton.  It is very beautifully tended with streams, footbridges and glorious trees.

Most of the club water is inaccessible except for a stretch known locally as Sheep Dip Hollow. This spot was used for swimming, paddling, cooling off in the summer, and presumably for dipping sheep. The website below has a map and a few memories of childhood visits.

Wild Swimming

We will spend the day at Sheep Dip Hollow and along the footpath to the John Of Gaunt Lakes, on the King Somborne side of the valley.

Please join us; swimming costumes optional.

River Test, from the Source to the Sea – Longstock

Tuesday, 2nd May, 2017

Longstock Garden Centre and Farm Shop, 10.00 for coffee rendezvous


The Bunny is a single track road that joins the Peat Spade pub, in Longstock with the Andover to Stockbridge road.  This makes it sound a bit dull.

At one end the delightful pub will be a possible lunch spot.  From here the road meanders across  narrow bridges, through head-high bull rushes, by willows and streams.  The eel traps and thatched fishing huts on one side of the road must be one of the most photographed settings in Hampshire – I had to queue for my moment to take the picture above.

fullsizeoutput_389The views from this track are the challenge for May.

Anyone is welcome to join us for the day.  It doesn’t matter if this is your first step on the ‘journey’.  Please contact me if you want to come along and I will tell you what it involves. Kate Measham


Knee deep in the Test

I had to jump into the river in January, to rescue a pencil – obviously a special pencil. It was not too cold and I was wearing wellies.  Since then I have learned to be more careful, don’t balance anything on the edge of bridges, don’t talk to strangers, and don’t boast.

Today I forgot; I chatted to an interested stranger, told him why I was sitting so carefully on the edge of the bridge and dropped my most expensive brush into the water. It floated. Away. I had to run across the bridge, climb over wire to get to the river bank and plunge in. I was up to my knees wearing plimsoles and jeans.  The interested stranger was busy trying to work out how to take a video of me splashing around, and then asked why I hadn’t taken my trousers off. This is why you don’t talk to strangers.

Despite an early bath it was a glorious day.  We walked 5 miles, drew, painted, photographed and admired some acrobatic helicopter flying. As the year progresses, and the Test gets broader and faster the changes are noticeable. Today the colours of spring with young leaves on the trees, and new grass on the banks made January feel like a long time ago.


River Test, Source to Sea – Longparish

Monday 3rd April

Meet in Church Car Park at 10.00am


Spring on the River Test at Longparish is a burst of fresh, new life.  The trees along the banks are just coming into leaf, primroses and daffodils are everywhere, and if there is a field with lambs you can be certain they will be gamboling.


Longparish has different sized streams running through it, from the main river, through the mill race, the various ponds for coarse fishing to the rill running through  gardens in the centre of the village.  It is the very essence of chalk stream chocolate box.  Fingers crossed that it will be sunny on Monday 3rd.


We are meeting at the carpark by the church at 10.00am. Bring whatever materials you fancy. Please send me an email if you intend to join us. It is a very, very pretty stretch of the Test.

Sketch and scones…

23rd March, 2017

Riverside Yurt Cafe, Bransbury, nr Barton Stacey.

10am – 1.00pm

£35.00/day.  Some materials, coffee and  scones included.

Sewing and knitting have ‘stitch and bitch’… this is the drawing version, without the niceness. It will become a regular fixture on Thursdays later in the year

This is a  class about drawing.   It isn’t going to be called a ‘Beginners Guide to Drawing’ because nobody is really a beginner.

Drawing is a skill; it requires practise, guidance and encouragement, adventure and more practise. In this class you will be taught about materials, different techniques and, very importantly, you will learn how to look.

This is a class that is appropriate for all abilities.

You may not have picked up a pencil for a long time, or you might attend a regular, weekly class. The idea of this class, and others that will follow, is to extend yourself, try  something new, revisit something old and to remind yourself that drawing is exciting.