Gearing up for 3 months remote working in Europe

April 23, 2019 | 4 Comments

It’s only a few days time until I pack my bags and head to Europe for 3 months of remote working. And my second destination is scheduled to be this gorgeous hilltop Umbrian town which will be my home for nearly 3 weeks as part of the Palladian Odyssey 2019 Tours.

Naturally I am extremely excited about being in Europe but this year the trip contains 6 weeks worth of teaching and prep which is a lot. I also have a few weeks worth of work which I must get done before August. So I am definitely not thinking of this trip as holiday/vacation, instead I’m referring to it in my mind as an extended period of remote working!

Last year I found that having this mindset helped me get a lot done while I was away. I don’t know about you, but when I’m on holidays/vacation I often find it hard to do the work I want to do. Thinking of the whole trip as work (with little periods of downtime) made it easier to buckle down and work. Whilst my work is more fun than it used to be as an architect, there is still always a lot of admin to do behind the scenes. Focusing on that type of work when I’m in an amazing location is hard for me. The lure of going out and sketching instead is always so strong!

Traveling for work always sounds so exciting, but I know from my architect days that it’s often much harder than it seems. This type of remote working is definitely different. Has anyone done anything like it?

I’ll share more about my destinations soon… but right now I have to get back to work. So much to do!


  • We did 3 months in Warsaw, Poland. It was fun, but definitely took planning. The days were long, because of working with both Polish and American teams meant working both sets of hours. The upside, was that we had chosen an apartment on the river, in old town, and so it was lovely! We took a couple of weekend trips via Wow airlines, one to Rome, one to Stockholm, because you can do that there, pretty cheaply! We also took Polish language lessons to help us navigate the city a bit better – it really helped us buy bus tickets, and shop in places where no English was spoken. We rented our house to the Santa Fe, NM Opera for their seasonal staffing needs while we were gone, which defrayed most of the costs, since Warsaw is cheaper. So, while it took a great deal of arranging, working very long hours, we still managed to have a fabulously memorable time. I would do it again in a heartbeat. Im sure yours will be wonderful too. One day I will join you for a workshop!

    • Liz Steel says:

      Hi Claudia – thanks so much for sharing. that really sounds like an adventure! 🙂
      Hope you can join us one day!

  • Karalee Harding says:

    I certainly haven’t done anything like it, but someone I know online is doing a remote year (via a company of that name): twelve countries in twelve months, with a small group of people. It sounds fascinating, and maybe someday it would work for you. Could be the perfect sketching adventure!

  • Astrid Kahane-Seefeld says:

    This sounds fun.. and stressful at the same time…. But what a nice way to combine work with pleasure though. I always spend my summers in France (I am French) since I moved abroad for more than 20 years. This year, I will be bringing my “art stuff” as my family calls it as I started urban sketching. So I would be really interested to know what you will choose to take and what not and why, and how you pack. I don’t know yet if I will be driving or flying, so I am interested in any advice. Oh… and… of course… the BAG !!! Which bag do you use these days? I will be not having much urban scenery to sketch but we are surrounded by picturesque villages so there will be lots and lots of sketching and watercolouring, that’s for sure, and lot’s of it on the go too. But it will have to be combined with walking/hiking, so I was thinking a backpack this time.. not sure. What do you think?

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