A very busy month, starting off with the two Charles Reid
workshops I was presenting in the Cotswolds. After more than a year
in the planning the weeks went off not quite without a hitch but with no
problems we couldn't overcome! In the end a great time was had by
all with student representation from America, France, the Netherlands,
Germany, Greece, South Africa, Australia and more.
Barely was I back from Oxfordshire before I was packing
up the car for the Saltaire Arts Trail Makers' Fair. Clearly the
good weather that had eluded us in the Cotswolds had been saving itself for
this Bank Holiday weekend - three days of glorious sunshine added to
wonderful festival atmosphere in Saltaire and it really was the most fun
and uplifting event. I will certainly be putting in my application
to return next year.
I was very happy this month to be invited
to the launch event for a great new initiative in York, celebrating
independent retailers and artisans. It was an inspiring evening.
Do pop over to Proudly in York's
website and have a look at some of the amazing people working in this
Right at the end of April I finally got around to
painting my 12 x 12cm contribution for this year's
MS Trust Secret Art
Show. No of course I can't show you - it's a secret!
Instead I'll remind you of the piece I painted for the very first show
back in 2010. The new show opens for viewing on 24 June.
I was delighted this month by the success of
my 'Buy a Print and Change a Life' fundraiser for Comic Relief. In
the week leading up to Red Nose Day I offered a special edition of my
Klimt Peacock linocut print with all the sale price being sent to Comic
Relief. The project was tweeted about by Kirstie Allsopp and others
and also mentioned on The Guardian newspaper's website. The final
sum raised was a fantastic £335.
Meanwhile back in the studio I was working on a
reduction linocut print of the famous 199 Steps in Whitby. There is
an album of photos showing the development of the piece on
This has been a month of good news and
exciting developments. I am delighted to have been selected for two
highly competitive events: the Saltaire Arts Trail Makers Fair (25-27 May)
and the Holmfirth Art Market (29-30 June). Meanwhile I've been preparing a
small demonstration Japanese woodblock print which I can work on at the
Artists and Artisans event in March, so that visitors can watch the process
live. More information about all of these dates is on the
This handburnished woodcut print of Eastbourne Pier at
night has been finished this month and is available on
A quiet month spending time making plans for
the coming year. Keep an eye on the
Events page for new dates and
places to come and see my work.
Meanwhile in the studio this woodcut print of Whitby
Abbey was the first work completed in 2013. It is hand burnished onto
Japanese paper and is available in my
The last workshop of the year was this
month's still life masterclass at Me & Mrs Fisher. It was a very
happy and productive day and I had some
lovely emails from participants afterwards.
Once the final Yorkshire Best show was out of the way it
was time to start looking ahead to 2013 and planning events. Some
great news this month was that I have been invited back to Burton Agnes
Hall next summer for my fourth stay as Artist in Residence. Details are on
the Events page.
This month has seen a fair bit of
still life work going on, including three new
watercolours of cup and saucer sets. Printmaking has included this
new limited edition linocut of Clifford's Tower which has been printed in
two colour combinations.
Meanwhile I've been busy preparing for the next
Yorkshire Best event at The
Hospitium, York on 9 December; not only preparing work for sale and
sorting out my display but also getting to grips with my whizzy new chip
and pin terminal which means I can now at last accept card payments at
events and workshops.
I spent a great day at
Bar Lane Studios in York this
month on their first Life Drawing workshop. Designed for experienced
artists, the day provided an intensive programme of poses and performances
from four different models - everything from static solo long poses to
interpretive dance and music by two models working together. It was
a long and tiring day (in a good way!) and a huge success so the Studios
are now planning a second event in the new year.
I'm pleased to announce that from this month my work is
now on display and for sale at
Me & Mrs Fisher, where my watercolour masterclasses are held.
It's such a lovely venue and the perfect setting for my paintings.
There's been a lot going on this month.
Workshops started up again after the summer
break with a very happy and successful Absolute Beginners day. One student
wrote afterwards that it had 'had the desired effect' in that she had gone
home and got all her painting things out, while another email told me that
a student had 'really, really enjoyed the day'. It's always lovely to get
messages like that.
Also this month was the first ever Yorkshire Best event
which was held at the medieval Hospitium in York. By fortunate timing we
missed the rain and floods by just one day so that plenty of early
Christmas shoppers were able to reach us and stock up with the best hand
made goods and produce from Yorkshire artisans.
I've been busy in the studio this month too. Amongst
other works I completed a linocut started at Burton Agnes Hall which shows
the view from the summer house studio in the evening when the swallows and
house martins were whirling overhead.
I had a wonderful time this month back at
Burton Agnes Hall for my third
tenure as Artist in Residence. It is particularly magical to be able
to be at work in the garden studio by 8am on a summer's morning while the
dew is still on the grass and the only sound is the birds singing. I
met many delightful and interesting visitors to the Hall while I was
there: some of the most perceptive and rewarding conversations being with
the youngest visitors! Some of the work I made there is already in
my Etsy shop while more
will come shortly as started pieces are completed.
I very much look forward to returning to Burton Agnes
I was very lucky this month to spend a week at Oxford
Brookes University at a summer school with
Laura Boswell. Laura
learned traditional Japanese watercolour woodblock printing on an
intensive eight week residency in Japan and now passes on her skills to
others at classes like this. Laura is a wonderful tutor and if you
are interested in this form of printmaking (which is VERY different from
western linocut and woodcut techniques) then I cannot recommend a workshop
with Laura too highly.
I was thrilled to be able to purchase one of Laura's
limited edition 'Moon Rising' (left). It was the first work of hers
that I ever saw in a magazine article and was the one that got my
interest. I never dreamed I would one day have it hanging on my own
The beginning of June saw my fastest sale to date on
Etsy with a new lino
print of Puffins selling within hours of it being finished. A rapid
reprint means that it is available again both in the turquoise and blue
colourway shown here and in a more subdued teal and black version.
Later in the month I spent a wonderful couple of days in
Glasgow for my birthday. It was my first time in the city and my
first chance to visit the Kelvingrove Museum and the Burrell Collection at
Pollok Country Park. Both thoroughly recommended for art lovers!
This month has involved a lot of planning for next year, to
the extent that I've started to lose track and have been writing the
current date on cheques and documents as 2013!
Firstly I am delighted to confirm that Charles Reid will
be returning to the UK in May 2013 for two watercolour workshops.
This is the fourth time that I have arranged Charles' visits here and I'm
looking forward to these weeks being every bit as much fun as the previous
ones. Full information can be found on the
Charles Reid page on this site.
I have also been talking to Giles at
Manzac d'en Bas in south west France
about returning there to teach a third painting holiday. The result
is that we have fixed dates of 17 - 24 October 2013 and full information
will be available very soon on the
Painting Holidays page.
I have entered the world of Twitter this
month and can now be found as
The classes I am teaching for West York Adult Education
are going well and I'm fortunate to have a lovely bunch of people
attending. I think the six weeks are going to fly by very quickly.
Back in the studio, I've been painting my first ACEOs
for quite a time. Four new additions to the Eye Series are now on
the ACEO page and are available to buy on
This month I completed this portrait of a
friend of mine, Norman Jack. Norman is a radio presenter thousands
of miles away in Canada so our paths would not normally cross but we met
in Spain when we were both 'Anglo' volunteers on an English language
course for Spanish teachers. After seeing some of my work Norman
asked me last year if I would paint his portrait and finally I found time
to do it in the quiet time after Christmas. The stages of the
painting can be seen in a new watercolour
Also this month I was approached by York Council and
asked to provide cover for the last term of a weekly watercolour Adult
Education class. I'll be starting that after Easter for just six
weeks. It has fallen into place very neatly as this is in fact the
only period between now and the autumn in which I would have been
able to undertake a regular weekly commitment so it really couldn't have
worked out better!
I was delighted this month to be invited to
give a Guest Artist Interview to Jackson's Art for their online blog.
I was asked about my working practices, my favourite mediums and my
approach to my work. You can
read the interview here.
Readers can post comments or ask questions which I am doing my best to
A new Facebook page has been set up which will bring up
to date news about my work as well as bits of art related chat. The
idea is to allow the existing Stoneflower Studio Art Classes page to concentrate on
art tuition, from both me and other providers. Find the new
Facebook page at
www.facebook.com/janedukeartist or click on the Facebook badge to the
I've started off the new year by opening a
shop on Etsy where I
am selling unframed pieces including prints, sketches and ACEOs.
I know several sellers with shops on the site and fortunes seem to be
mixed. It will be interesting to see how it goes for me but first
signs are very promising indeed.
The watercolour painting to the left is a commission I
actually completed in 2011 but it was not presented to its recipient until
this month so I had to keep it under wraps. It is the Betty's Craft
Bakery in Harrogate and the piece was commissioned by the Bettys and