Home Upcoming Events Beginning Watercolor: Inspired by Ghost Ranch with Rita Randolph – G230627

Beginning Watercolor: Inspired by Ghost Ranch with Rita Randolph – G230627

Nothing kickstarts a beginning water class like the vistas that inspired Georgia O’Keeffe! In this week- long class you will be eager to learn the basics of watercolor in the classroom so that you may get outdoors and capture the amazing surroundings and be inspired at Ghost Ranch.

Each day will be composed of half the day in the classroom, and the other half either working on your lessons or out in the field capturing your subjects.

At the start of the course, you will learn some basic sketching to create a beginning for a successful watercolor. You’ll learn a bit about perspective, composition, rules, and rules to break! We’ll set up your palette in a color wheel configuration, and then begin playing with the paints, brushes, paper and of course water! 

The second class we will begin to learn about laying down washes, dry on dry, wet on dry, wet on wet, and kiss-edge blending, as well as how to avoid turning colors into mud!  The joy of watercolor is the unknown and the surprises that are inevitable. We’ll follow the Bob Ross philosophy of happy little mistakes. 

In the third class, we’ll continue the practice of washes, glazes, textures, and value. These techniques are the basics and the beauty of watercolor that you do in all your paintings in the future and so are important to learn from the start! In this class you will also explore the different marks that your brushes can make and how to get great freedom and life into your paintings. 

Days 4 and 5 we’ll begin conceptualizing our final piece while continuing to learn about composition and value, shapes and shadows, and creating depth and drama.

At the end of the class everyone will have pieces from each day that you can take home. They will be vignettes of your experience at Ghost Ranch to keep forever, and reminders of the beginning of your watercolor journey. We will share and discuss our efforts, with constructive encouragement that launch you on a lifelong journey of creativity and joy!



$1,903 Private Bath Lodging – single occupancy-restroom inside your room $990, $675 tuition, $238 meals package

$1,453 Dorm-style Lodging – single occupancy-restroom outside your room $540, $675 tuition, $238 meals package


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Please use the options below to find helpful information regarding Ghost Ranch Workshops and Retreats

If you need shuttle service, please reach out to Kevin at White Buffalo Shuttle 831.359.8077 | nivek@cruzio.com

Virtual Events: Payments made for Virtual Events are non-refundable. If you are unable to attend the event, recordings will be made available to you after the event. For events with multiple sessions, every attempt will be made to make the session(s) available to you before the next scheduled session.

In-person events: Written notification must be received no later than 45 days prior to the start date of your workshop in order to receive a refund, minus a $150 processing charge. No refunds can be processed after that time. We reserve the right to announce a change in leadership or cancel any program 31 days prior to the first day of the workshop. In this event, you may transfer to another workshop without charge or we will refund the full workshop payment. (Many participants have found it helpful to purchase travel insurance). If the cancellation is received less than 31 days prior to your start date, your funds can be left on deposit for another Ghost Ranch workshop or future stay during this calendar year, but you must know the exact dates of your next stay. Or you can choose to make it a tax-deductible donation to support Ghost Ranch. This cancellation policy does not apply to January Term.

Ghost Ranch Scholarship Request

Thank you for your interest in applying for a Ghost Ranch scholarship. The typical scholarship amount is $100-350. We are able to grant more scholarships in the winter, spring and late fall seasons than we are in the summer months. 

You will receive a copy of your scholarship form after you submit it and should hear back from Ghost Ranch about your application within a 10 working days. If you have additional questions, please reach out to Robin Keck, robingk@ghostranch.org.


We understand there are some with special dietary restrictions. In order for us to best serve all, prior notice of any special needs is required.

Because we are a cafeteria style foodservice and our number of guests can be quite large, we are unable to accommodate individual meals for any guest. We are, however, always looking to be sure that we have an option that will fit one or more common and crossover restrictions.

Any severe allergies are taken most seriously, yet we cannot promise there will be no cross contamination in the assembling of products here. We highly recommend some personal option be brought along. We do have a few public refrigerators available, but there is no access to a kitchen or cooking.

We are also unable administer any medication, so please have your personal Epi-Pen” readily available.

We are glad you are planning to visit the ranch, and want your trip from beginning to end to be smooth.We rely on White Buffalo Shuttle for our guests. Kevin Spitzer picks up at the Sage Inn in Santa Fe the afternoon of the first date listed, and returns to the Sage Inn the morning of the last date. His phone number is 831.359.8077. Email is nivek@cruzio.com

The best way to get to Santa Fe Sage Inn is Groome Transportation. They are very helpful in assessing your flight info and getting you on the right shuttle at the right time. 505.474.5696/ groometransportation.com


Click here to see a full list of FAQs

What day/time does the workshop start and end?

In-person workshops begin with check-in at 3:00 p.m. and a ranch orientation in the evening on the first date listed for the course and end at 10:00 a.m. with checkout on the last date listed.

Virtual workshops will have a varied schedule that is identified within each workshop description.

What is the difference between a room with private bath, a room with semi-private or shared bath, and a room with communal/dorm bath?

Private bath refers to the type of bathroom, not single occupancy

Private Bath Room: There is a bathroom in that one room that is not shared between or with any other rooms. The highest rate tier of Ghost Ranch lodging.

Semi-private/shared: There is a bathroom between two rooms that is shared by the occupants of the two adjoining sleeping rooms. These rooms will only be used as family or group suites, not to be shared by unknown neighbors as in the past.

Communal/dorm: There is a communal bathroom/shower in the lodging building and participants will need to exit their room to reach these facilities.

Click here to learn more about lodging at Ghost Ranch

  • The ranch Dining Hall serves three meals a day on a fixed schedule. We offer a vegetarian option at each meal. While the Dining Hall offers gluten-free items and vegan dishes at some meals, we cannot guarantee that these options will be available for each meal.  Let us know about this need in your registration notes. If it is necessary for a guest to eat a specific diet or if a guest has food allergies, the surest option is to bring personal food items to the ranch. There are refrigerators available for guest use in a few common/public spaces. 


Jun 04 - 10 2023



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