Spirit of the Woods

Spirit of the Woods 

Natural Art & Food Retreat


with The Salt Box and Surrey Art School

wild food, foraging walk, wild cookery, the salt box

Be our guest as we capture the spirit of the woods through art and food, for a day beneath the trees in our woodland glen. We’ll be taking time to drink in our surroundings with a seasonal inspired selection of art workshops led by Surrey Art School, combined with delicious food inspired by nature’s larder.


We’ll meet in our cosy barn and begin the afternoon with a Foraging Walk up to our woodland glen, waking up our senses and giving you tips on how to identify seasonal edibles. Together, we’ll gather a selection of wild ingredients as we settle into our natural surroundings.


After a restorative cuppa in our woodland kitchen (equipped with a large shelter in case of any uncooperative weather!), we will then turn our attention to our first art workshop of the day, a Mindful Photography session guided by Ellie, founder of Surrey Art School. Using a toolkit of mindful techniques, you’ll learn how to use your device or camera to tune into your surroundings – becoming more observant of light, shadows, colour and texture. A passionate photographer who uses her camera as a tool for meditation as much as for recording, Ellie will share her top tips and tricks for creating powerful compositions and a calm mind. You’ll learn how to develop an ‘attentional aperture’, using your eyes as the lens and focus, your mind as the processor and your camera as the anchor to the present moment. 

We’ll then come together for Afternoon Tea enjoyed beneath the trees, with a selection of sweet and savoury delights enjoyed around our crackling fires. 


Following our Afternoon Tea, Ellie will lead a Woodland Inks Workshop, creating dreamy summer studies of the woodland – playing with washes and working with a range of different brushes and brush strokes to capture our surroundings. We’ll start with ‘mindful looking’ using our eyes to scan the bare branches of the trees, looking for texture, changes in colour, light and noticing where the shadows fall. We’ll then be reaching for our oak gall inks and with some tuition from Ellie, will learn how to use our brush effectively to record the shapes and forms to capture our surroundings


As the sun sets, we’ll turn our attention to raising our glasses! In our woodland kitchen, we will all get stuck in creating a wildly inspired seasonal cocktail to enjoy with our Woodland Feast over Fire. Dinner will be a vegetarian feast, with our chefs using local, seasonal ingredients cooked over the flames, to be enjoyed surrounded by the crackle and pop of fires with old friends and new.


To close the day we’ll gather around a blazing fire and use twigs gathered from the forest floor to weave a god’s eye protection charm for ourselves or our loved ones. The weaving of a god’s eye is a form of moving meditation, as hands work the yarn, heart sets an intention to ward off negativity and avert the critical eye. 


We keep the fires stoked throughout the day and provide plenty of light refreshments throughout the day – so there is nothing for you to do except show up with a healthy appetite and a creative outlook.  We’ll finish the day with a little gift bag to remind you of that time you spent in our little woodland sanctuary.


Please Note: All of the activities are suitable for all levels and no prior experience is needed to enjoy this beautiful mindful day. The art workshops are all suitable for beginners and Ellie’s gentle and mindful approach to teaching will encourage your confidence levels to bloom and your technical skill to blossom. Spaces are super limited on these small, intimate seasonal gatherings, so book soon if you’re keen to join us!


The Salt Box at Priory Farm
Sandy Lane
Nutfield RH14EJ

Date & Time

Saturday 6th June 2020

2:30pm – 8:30pm

Ticket Price

£90.00 per adult

What’s Included

  • Hot Drink and sweet treat on arrival
  • Foraging Walk
  • Mindful Photography Workshop with Ellie Green, founder of Surrey Art School
  • Afternoon Tea
  • Woodland Inks Workshop with Ellie Green, founder of Surrey Art School
  • Wild Cocktail Masterclass
  • 3-Course woodland feast (Canapé, Main Course, Pudding)
  • Fire-side God’s-Eye Workshop
  • Gift Bag


Further Information

  • Full refunds are available up to 14 days prior to the event.
  • Instructions on how to find us and where to park, will be sent to you 72 hours prior to the event via email.
  • We have limited capability to cater for dietary requirements without advance warning, due to the set menu nature of the event. Please let us know about anything relevant prior to booking your tickets, a minimum of 72 hours prior to the event.
  • We are a casual dining experience, there is no dress code. Many of our events take place in the woods, therefore we always advise on wearing suitable footwear. Whilst we always hope for pleasant conditions we recommend that you also bring a warm and waterproof layer.
  • The menu is subject to change.


Can’t find the answer you’re looking for? We’ve answered some of our most frequently asked questions here.


View our Terms and Conditions here. By booking a seat at one of our events or courses, you agree to our Terms and Conditions.

Illustration of wild mushrooms
Ellie Green from Surrey Art School

About Surrey Art School


Surrey Art School offer contemporary art classes, courses and events across surrey encouraging wellbeing through creativity.


Founded by Ellie Green, SAS are a highly creative and contemporary community for both Artists and learners of all abilities to connect. They offer a seasonal menu of workshops, classes and pop up events from their Studio in Newdigate and in beautiful locations across Surrey. They strongly believe in creating the right atmosphere for learning, and equipping their students with confidence in the creative process. Their classes are calm and focused, using mindful techniques to ‘switch off’ from the busy digital world, slow down and give full attention to our surroundings.


You can find out more about Surrey Art School here.