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Watercolor and well-being at True Nature

Locations: News Published

On May 21, local watercolor artist Sarah Uhl invites the community to celebrate the season of rebirth with a day-long retreat at True Nature Healing Arts, combining meditation, yoga, food prepared onsite and intentional watercoloring.

Uhl, a self-taught artist from Colorado, is famous for her whimsical use of bright watercolor paints to depict local mountain scenery. Focusing on the connectivity between humans and nature with art as a primary tool, Uhl also regularly hosts workshops and wellness retreats, inviting community members to try their hand at the intentional creative process as a method for connection and wellness.

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The retreat in May, titled “The Spring Wellness Elixir,” promises to be “equally nourishing as it is invigorating” and will take place primarily within True Nature’s Peace Garden. Uhl has regularly hosted her painting workshops and retreats there in the past. “True Nature is a real sanctuary for us in our small community,” she praises.

The Peace Garden rests just beside the Rio Grande Trail. It itself is cultivated both biodynamically and organically and is home to native plants intertwined with edible and medicinal herbs. The garden also features small sections devoted to various holistic practices, including a yoga spiral, a path designed to massage reflexology points on the feet and a Zen garden. It’s a beautiful site for wellness practice, especially at this time of the year when the grass gets one shade greener each day. 

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“I love playing off the seasons,” Uhl says. “It anchors you into a focus that’s manageable.”

Starting at 9am, the retreat will begin with a tea ceremony in the yoga spiral, followed by a yoga session with teacher Kerrie Schur. Schur, who has provided a body-centric dimension in Uhl’s previous retreats, has a diverse background in personal development and connecting the body with the mind. “I honor the transformative power of yoga asana, breath and meditation and believe that as we give ourselves permission to pause and turn inward that we can access our deepest reservoir of strength to help us navigate the changing tides of our lives,” Schur says.

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The painting begins at 11:30am, with Uhl as a guide into the medium. “Part of being well is having tools for self-knowing,” she says. “For me, I’m a self-taught artist. I focus more when I teach on self-empowerment and self-allowance — allowing oneself to lean in and play… not focusing on painting the tree how it looks.” The retreat welcomes painters of all skill levels, and a small watercolor kit will be provided for attendants. The paints come from Grand Junction-based Greenleaf & Blueberry, a business that handcrafts high-quality watercolors from single pigments — the same paints Uhl uses in her own artwork.

After a bit of painting, a fully organic lunch will be served from the True Nature’s kitchen. Afterwards, Uhl will host a brief meditation and grounding workshop, and at 2:30pm the painting will resume, this time with a focus on one’s “mental, physical, emotional and spiritual well-being using color and intention as your guides.” The retreat will close with a renewal ceremony at the fire circle, and the attendees will be let loose with a painter’s kit, a self-care gift from Uhl and a sense of spring rejuvenation.

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Since becoming a mother, Uhl has shifted much of her time away from her own studio work and toward creating more and more events to share her methods of connection and intention with the greater public. She hosts yearly Women’s Wellness Retreats at Avalanche Ranch up the Crystal River — already sold out for the 2023 season — and other workshops throughout the year. 

More information can be found at, including sign-ups for the Spring Wellness Elixir, with several spots remaining at $375 per person.

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Tags: #Sarah Uhl #True Nature Healing Arts #water color
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