Draft Itinerary for Miniature Painting Workshop

Workshop Leaders : Ajay Sharma and Olivia Dalrymple

Venue : Diggi Palace

Workshops run from Sunday 2nd February to Sunday 9th February 2020

Please meet on the Diggi Lawn at 9.55am on the first day

Introductions and Welcome Tea, Sunday 2nd February, 4.30 – 6pm:

You will be introduced to the Workshops programme, and meet your teachers and fellow participants to discuss the week’s itinerary.

Day 1, Monday 3rd February, 10 – 4pm:

You will learn how to prepare handmade paper, pasting sheets together and burnishing with an agate stone. You will then be shown how to mix kharia (chalk white) and paint a couple of coats as your base colour on the paper, before burnishing again. You will also learn how to mix kajal and practise using the very fine squirrel brush. Then you will spend time deciding on your subject matter and the main colours needed from your box of stone pigments.

In the afternoon you will have the chance to go to the bazaar with Olivia, to see the making of gold leaf, and have the chance to buy additional pigments.

8.30 - 11pm: Evening Concert at Diggi

Day 2, Tuesday 4th February, 10 – 4pm:

You will trace your subject matter and transfer it onto prepared paper using carbon trace paper. You will learn how to grind and mix pigments to the correct consistency and start the process of colour filling, by first outlining individual colour areas and then, using the drip technique, filling them. You will again burnish with an agate stone.

Day 3, Wednesday 5th February, 10 – 1pm:

You will complete your colour filling, and make your outline with the squirrel brush, adding more detailed work.

2pm: Workshops Expedition to places of historical and artistic interest

8.30 - 11pm: Evening Concert at Diggi

Day 4, Thursday 6th February, 10 – 4pm:

You will learn the practises of Prataj (shading and line work). You will be taught how to use liquid gold for detailed brushwork and how to apply gold leaf for larger areas.

In the afternoon, there will be an expedition to seelocal artisan paper-making at Sanganer.

Day 5, Friday 7th February, 10 – 1pm:

You will carry on with your painting, applying the techniques you have learned.

In the afternoon, we will be visiting the newly restored magnificent rural fort of the Diggi family, for an evening of celebration, banquet and live music.

3pm: Drive to Diggi Fort

4.30pm: Tea and Diggi village walk

6 – 7pm: Sunset Concert and Cocktails

7pm: Dinner

9.30pm: Carriages to Diggi

Day 6, Saturday 8th February, 10 – 1pm:

You will finish off your painting with a border and learn how to draw a ‘cut’ line to complete your miniature. You will then burnish the entire picture with an agate stone in preparation for the final exhibition.

Day 7, Sunday 9th February

11 – 1pm: Workshops Exhibition on the Diggi Lawns

1.30 – 4pm: Traditional Rajasthani Farewell Lunch at the privately owned Saba Haveliin the old walled city of Jaipur. There will be plenty of photographic possibilities and the opportunity for kite flying.

This marks the end of the Wonderful Workshops programme

Please note:

Whilst everything will be done to ensure your safety during the course of these workshops, you agree to participate at your own risk.

Additional shopping in the bazaar is optional and not included in your workshop fee.

Itineraries may be subject to minor modifications due to local factors


Olivia Dalrymple is an artist & illustrator who specialises in miniature painting techniques. She shows with the Grosvenor Gallery in London and at the Delhi Art Fair, and has had solo shows in New York and at the Venice Biennale. She has also written and illustrated children’s books for an Indian NGO dedicated to increasing literacy.

Ajay Sharma is a Master Miniature Painter, recognised througout India and internationally. He teaches all over the world, including an annual residency at the Princes School in London, and recieves many students at his own studio in Jaipur, including Fulbright scholars from the USA.

Introduction to the Miniature Painting Workshop
by Olivia Dalrymple

I first fell in love with miniature painting when I visited the National Museum in Delhi roughly 25 years ago: the jewel-like colours, the detail, decoration, size and subject matter of the paintings I saw completely enchanted me. I’ve been striving to make my own miniatures ever since, but it wasn’t until I met the Master miniature painter Ajay Sharma that I really started to get into the heart and soul of the medium - learning its ancient techniques and visual vocabulary. Like the Old Pink City of Jaipur itself, Ajay is an endless fascinating font of knowledge about this very precious traditional art form.

During the Wonderful Workshop week in Jaipur, people on the miniature painting course have the unique opportunity of really entering into Ajay’s world – exploring the Old City’s bazaars with their alchemists and artisan’s workshops, and learning how to prepare hand-made paper, grind and mix semi-precious stone pigments, work with miniature squirrel hair brushes, and use liquid gold for detailed brushwork and how to apply gold leaf to produce a completed miniature for show at the end of the week!

It’s a wonderfully intense week, mixing as it does the hurly burly chaos of Jaipur with the meditative calm that pervades miniature painting at its best. I very much hope you all enjoy it as much as we do!