DUBLIN Sketching Retreat

WITH IAN FENNELLY

Join Ian Fennelly on an Urban Sketching Adventure in the Vibrant City of Dublin.
7 days   l 5 Workshops   Dublin, Ireland

28th Sept – 4th October 2025

Join Ian Fennelly and the Urban Sketch team for a special sketching retreat in the vibrant City of Dublin, Ireland.

In this exclusive sketching retreat, Ian will lead 5 on-location workshops for an exclusive group of 15 participants. Together, you’ll capture the unique and striking architecture, delve into the history of famous landmarks, and unravel the fascinating stories embedded in this lively city. Ian Fennelly will guide you through each step of this artistic journey.

Ian Fennelly. Chester Cross Urban Sketch art

Your Location

Dublin, the lively capital of Ireland, beckons urban sketchers with its unique blend of historic charm, culture and modern vibrancy. Renowned for its warm hospitality, Dublin provides an inspiring backdrop for artists seeking a diverse range of sketching subjects.

Narrow cobblestone streets wind through the city, leading to a wealth of architectural treasures. From the medieval majesty of Dublin Castle to the elegant Georgian squares, each corner of the city tells a story. The River Liffey gracefully divides the city, with its iconic bridges offering picturesque scenes that captivate sketchers.

 

Dublin’s cozy pubs, adorned with colorful facades and adorned with intricate details, provide a lively contrast to the tranquillity of its parks and gardens. The city’s cultural richness, with its museums, theatres, and vibrant street art scene, adds depth to the sketching experience.

Whether capturing the architectural grandeur of St. Patrick’s Cathedral or the bustling energy of Temple Bar, Dublin promises urban sketchers an eclectic mix of subjects that reflect the city’s character and spirit. This special sketching retreat invites artists of all abilities to join Ian Fennelly and immerse themselves in the heart of this culturally rich city, where every corner holds a story and every scene invites you to put pen to paper, capturing the essence of this enchanting Irish capital.

YOUR INSTRUCTOR

Your personal instructor for the week is Ian Fennelly.

Throughout this special Sketching retreat Ian will be with you at each new location teaching you his methods, while helping, guiding, inspiring, and encouraging you to stretch your skills and develop your own unique style of sketching.

Whether you’re a complete beginner or an experienced artist, everyone is welcome. This is a rare opportunity to work side-by-side with one of the world’s most revered urban sketchers and much sought after teachers.

Ian Fennelly. Chester Cross Urban Sketch art
Chester Bandstand by Ian Fennelly

Why Should You Join Us?

Watch the short video trailer below to find out from past participants what makes a sketching retreat with Urban Sketch Course so special:

Sketch in Dublin with Ian Fennelly

We’re thrilled to present this unique opportunity to join Ian Fennelly and the Urban Sketch team for a week of  sketching in the vibrant City of Dublin.

Overview

DURATION: 7 days, 6 nights
LOCATION: Dublin, Ireland
SPACES: 15 (+ Companions)
DATES: 28th Sept – 4th October 2025
LEVEL: Beginner’s to Advanced

Click the tabs for further information.

Our trip starts at the iconic Clarence Hotel on the evening of Sunday, September 28th, where you’ll meet up with Ian and the Urban Sketch team for a relaxed welcome reception and drinks. The Clarence Hotel is in the heart of Dublin City and just a short stroll away from all our sketching locations.

Your workshops begin on Monday, September 29th. Each day we’ll take a pleasant walk to a new sketching location. Following 5 days of sketching, we will finish on Friday, October 3rd, for our farewell dinner experience.

Despite an action-packed week of sketching and learning, there will be ample opportunity to enjoy some down time, including sightseeing, explorations, shopping, views, catch-up sketching, local museums, or simply relax and enjoy the facilities provided by the hotel.

Click the next tab to find out what’s included in this retreat »

Includes:

The Dublin Sketching Retreat includes:

  • Hotel (6 nights)
  • Full English/Continental buffet breakfast (daily)
  • Welcome reception (September 29th)
  • All workshops & sketching demonstrations with Ian Fennelly (Mon – Fri)
  • Farewell evening meal (October 5th)

Excludes:

The Dublin Sketching Retreat excludes:

  • Flights to/from the destination
  • Airport transfer to/from the hotel
  • Lunch and evening meals (except the Farewell Dinner)
  • Painting supplies
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Luggage handling
  • Travel insurance
  • Personal expenses
  • Items not explicitly specified in the above inclusion list

Click the next tab to find out more about the hotel we’ll be staying at »

For your 7-day stay we have selected the The Clarence Hotel which is located in Dublin’s iconic Temple Bar area. The hotel is a pleasant walk away from all of our sketching destinations.

The hotel is included within the price of this trip (double or twin rooms are available). If you want to upgrade your room, please contact the hotel directly and quote “Urban Sketch Course”.

Room amenities include:

  • Full English/Continental buffet breakfast
  • Free WiFi internet
  • Over 100 digital TV channels
  • 24-hour front desk
  • Tea/coffee making facilities
  • Hairdryer
  • Iron and ironing board available on request

How to get there?

Via Airplane – Dublin Airport is the nearest to Dublin, and the transfer time by train is around 30 minutes, with regular services available. For those traveling from Heathrow to Dublin, it is recommended to take the London Underground to London Victoria and then connect with a mainline train to Dublin. Trains from Stansted to Dublin take approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes, involving two changes—usually at Tottenham Hale for an Underground train to Victoria, followed by a connection to a mainline train to Dublin. Luton Airport offers a direct and regular service to Dublin through Thameslink, taking approximately 2 hours.

Via Train – Opting for train travel is often the quickest way to reach Dublin from various UK locations, providing a more environmentally friendly alternative to driving or flying. For those traveling from Europe, the Eurostar train arrives at St Pancras, London, where direct trains to Dublin are available (via Irish Sea crossing).

Via Car – Our accommodation in Dublin provides on-site parking. The distance between London and Dublin is approximately 290 miles, and the drive takes approximately 5 hours (+ Irish Sea crossing).

I’m a beginner, is this trip for me?

Yes. Ian will assume no prior experience and will take you carefully through each of the steps in his process as he is doing it – from blank pages to the shapes and colors he uses, through to finished artwork.

What do I need to bring with me?

We recommend that you bring with you an A3 Sketchbook, your watercolor paints and brushes, a small pot for water, brush pens and fine liners, a small chair to sit on, drinking water, sunscreen, and a raincoat (just in case) and your best sketching smile!

For a full materials list, take a look here.

Will we be drawing and painting on location?

Yes. This is authentic urban sketching retreat and Ian will be taking you through all of the steps while we’re on-location; from blank page to sketching everything out, to applying the paint and fine liner detail work, there and then. There will also be lots of opportunities and a special area back at the hotel to finish and refine your work should you wish to.

What’s the difference between this Sketching Retreat and just doing an online course?

While our online courses are a wonderful and highly convenient way to learn urban sketching, truthfully, nothing can replicate the experience, self development, and the personal satisfaction you will gain from sketching live on location with Ian Fennelly and an intimate group of likeminded sketchers.

There is a vast difference between watching and learning from Ian through online tutorials, and actually being there on location, learning and sketching alongside him.

Urban sketching is not only about the lines you put on your paper, but also about developing and refining the skill of ‘thinking’, and responding to your environment in real time. And this is something that can’t be developed through sketching from photos. And this is where Ian excels – teaching you the art and craft of sketching live on location and all the nuances you need to know.

Ian will be with you each day to personally help you to improve on those areas you might be struggling with. The value of having a world class artist and teacher to personally coach you are far beyond what you can gain through any online course. Not to mention the new friendships you’ll make along the way.

Anything else I should consider?

We strongly recommend that you have a good travel and medical insurance policy in place to cover you in the event you must cancel your trip and any emergency medical services you might need while travelling in a foreign country. Fennelly Art Ltd and Urban Sketch Course cannot be held responsible for any accident/loss or injury incurred during the course of the trip.

Will I have to share a room?

No. Each participant will have their own private room at The Hotel. You will only share a room if you choose to bring a travel companion with you, such as a friend, partner, etc.

Can I extend my stay or upgrade my room?

Yes. If you wish to make any adjustments or upgrades to your room, please contact us at: [email protected]

Can I bring a partner or friend?

Yes. Non-sketching companions are welcome if they are sharing with a sketcher as there is plenty to see and explore on this trip.

What is your cancellation policy?

The cost of the trip is non-refundable once booked and paid for. In the unlikely event this trip is cancelled you will be issued with a 100% refund. If you are unable to join the event after booking, we will attempt to resell your place on your behalf. A refund will only be issued once we manage to successfully resell your place, minus a cancellation admin fee. Please read our full workshop terms and conditions here.

Who do I contact with any questions about the trip?

Contact our support team at any time on support@urbansketchcourse.com. We will be delighted to help you.

For all terms and conditions please click here.

Click all the tabs above for all the details of what's included in this Sketch Dublin trip

Sketching Locations

Each of these locations has been carefully selected by Ian Fennelly to give you the best sketching experience while developing and refining your skills in specific areas:

Feedback From Our Most Recent Sketching Retreat

In July 2023, we ran our augural Sketching Retreat in the historical City of Chester. 15 participants joined us from all over the world. Below are just some of the comments that have been posted online (you can also read a recap and see photos here):

 

BOOKING INFORMATION

Places are limited to just 15 participants. Our last two retreats sold out quickly. Secure your place using the payment options below and join us on this Urban Sketching adventure of a lifetime in the vibrant City of Dublin. This is a chance to learn new skills, meet new people, make wonderful art, and create special memories that last forever.

Your Retreat Includes:

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5 Sketching Workshops with Ian Fennelly

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6 Nights Hotel Accommodation

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Daily English/Continental Breakfast

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Welcome Reception

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Farewell Evening Meal

Choose a Payment Option Below to Secure Your Place Today:

PAY IN FULL

  • Single Participant Price:
  • Add a Non-Sketcher Companion:

Click the button below to secure your place:

PAY IN 8

  • Single Participant Price: a month
  • Participant + Non-Sketcher: a month

Click below to pay in 8 monthly instalments:

Sketch with Ian Fennelly

Join us on a fabulous Sketching Retreat with Ian Fennelly