top of page
Painting with Watercolor on Canvas
Painting with Watercolor on Canvas

Painting with Watercolor on Canvas

This five-day immersive watercolor workshop is designed for artists with some experience painting with watercolor on paper, but who are interested in working on nonabsorbent surfaces.

Date & Time

Aug 25, 2024, 6:00 PM – Aug 30, 2024, 12:00 PM

Adamah Art Studios, 4681 Co Rd ZZ, Dodgeville, WI 53533, USA

About the Workshop

Join artist Helen Klebesadel in this unique opportunity for painters to explore painting with watercolor on nonabsorbent substrates like canvas and other surfaces while experiencing the beautiful rural Adamah Retreat Center.  The workshop is designed for artists with some experience painting with watercolor on paper but who are interested in learning how to work with watercolor on nonabsorbent surfaces that can be sealed and displayed without matting or framing under glass.   Participants will learn expressive and experimental approaches for effectively painting with watercolor on canvas, Aquabord, wood panels , etc.   Surfaces for painting and the sealants we will explore are included in the workshop fee.  Please see the list of suggested materials to bring below.

Artist Bio:

Helen Klebesadel is an artist, an educator, and an activist. Born and raised in rural Spring Green, Wisconsin, Helen maintains a studio in Madison, Wisconsin.  She is best known for her environmental and women centered watercolors.  She uses the creative process to think visually so she can use her creative process to help her understand the world.   She believes her artwork create narratives that re-examine and re-present existing power structures  so we can notice when they hurt humans and nature.

Helen’s watercolors push the traditional boundaries of the medium in scale, content, and technique. Ranging in size from the intimate to the monumental, her paintings are transparent watercolors on paper and canvas. She starts with detailed drawings and developing the images with layer upon layer of color washes and dry brush technique mixed with occasional areas of wet-into-wet spontaneity.

Klebesadel exhibits her work nationally and internationally, including having shown her watercolors in several American Embassies through the Arts in the Embassies Program. The Bergstrom-Mahler Museum presented her first solo museum exhibition in 1994.   The Copelouzos Family Art Museum in Athens, Greece acquired her work in 2020. Helen’s artwork is represented in the art collections of the American Council on Education, the Racine Art Museum, West Bend Mutual Insurance, Lawrence University, UW Hospitals and Clinics, Central Wisconsin Center,  the Dubuque Medical Clinic, the St. Francis Medical Center in Grand Island, Nebraska and numerous private collections. Several of her watercolors addressing environmental themes are also in the collections of the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies. as well as the University’s Trout Lake Research Station.

To learn more about the artist visit:

Suggested materials to bring:

  • Bring your favorite watercolor paints and colors, a basic set will be fine
  • A range of brushes
  • Two water containers (quart containers)
  • A white plate, enamel butchers tray, or watercolor palette
  • One bottle of Liquid Mask: Winsor Newton, Frisket, Misket, etc with your favorite applicators
  • Pencils and kneaded eraser
  • Paper Towels/ tissue/sponge
  • Bring copier printouts of several simple images you like to work with to use in your experimental paintings on canvas and aqua board. Bring plenty of images to choose from, even if you are not sure you will want to use them. I will have transfer paper available.

Optional Materials

  • Sketchbook/notebook
  • A small plastic spray bottle with adjustable nozzle
  • 4x6” absorbent sponge & a smaller ones
  • A rubber Cement Pick Up (office supply stores
  • A toothbrush you are willing to sacrifice to art
  • Any additional supplies you enjoy working with.
  • Waterproof ink and drawing pens
  • Small dishes or jars for mixing up larger amounts of paint


Helen will bring back-up materials of almost everything so do not panic if you cannot find something listed. Supplies for watercolor can be costly, but good quality materials help you achieve better results sooner because you are not fighting your art materials as you create your work.

Questions about the workshop? Email Helen at

This event has a group. You’re welcome to join the group once you register for the event.
3 updates in the group


  • Single Occupancy

    Private single room with private bathroom, linens included. Meals included. Substrates including canvas and aqua board, and sealants for use in the workshop.

  • Multiple Occupancy

    Shared room with private bathroom, linens included. If you do not indicate a roommate or come with a houseguest, you will be assigned a roommate prior to arrival. Meals included. Substrates including canvas and aqua board, and sealants for use in the workshop.

  • Commuter Rate

    The rate does not include lodging. Lunch will be provided daily. Additional meals are available for purchase. Please make arrangements in advance if you would like to add meals to your workshop. Substrates including canvas and aqua board, and sealants for use in the workshop.

  • Houseguest

    For anyone looking to join a workshop participant during their stay at Adamah without participating in a workshop. Meals and lodging are included. Come experience the beauty of Bethel Horizons property with over 7 miles of hiking and 5 miles of mountain biking trails. Relax and take in the breathtaking views and enjoy exploring Wisconsin's beautiful Driftless Area.




Share this event

bottom of page