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So what happened to Flaming June?

Flaming June is the title of Sir Frederic Leighton’s 1895 painting of a woman in an orange dress sleeping under a canopy in the summer heat. Is her name June or is it the month of June? Are the flames her red hair or is it the summer heat? The painting lives in Puerto Rico but is currently on show at the Royal Academy until 2025 and if you visit soon you could also take in the Summer Exhibition. I did submit a painting this year but unsurprisingly did not get past the first stage. C'est la vie!

The whole of June is supposed to bring warmth and sunshine but not this year, the wind and rain has been relentless and the temperature more like March than June and then on midsummer day it suddenly changed. The sunshine arrived along with high humidity and the garden was in shock but my mind was on other things.

Thank you to everyone who has visited my studio over the last month, I have been overwhelmed by the lovely comments and interest in what I do. There has been a steady flow of visitors, being very busy at times, but I hope you all had an enjoyable glimpse into my world. I signed up with South East Open Studios and Art in June this year for the first time and will definitely do it again next year. A chance to meet kindred spirits and talented artists as well as art collectors and people just looking for a day out in the country. I have sold a few paintings, books and dozens of cards. Interesting conversations have given me much to think about and I have never eaten so much cake. The homemade cake (generously donated by my friends and neighbours) was baked in aid of and although I don't have the exact amount yet, the fundraising looks like it will be nearly £300, so thank you to all concerned, particularly Jill who came up with some delicious recipes and a planner!

The disadvantage of opening the studio for a whole month is first to get it presentable and then to keep it clean and tidy! I don't have the space to continue painting but I have been demonstrating eco printing on paper using homemade rust mordant. When it is painted over the plant imprints, magic happens before your very eyes. Children love it! I am thinking about running a couple of workshops and will have more news on that in my next newsletter. This would tie in with some "How To" videos on the website that will be accessible to subscribers only but first I have to get to grips with the tech stuff. If you know anyone that can help me with this please get in touch.

The Community Art project has been popular. I have been posting the development every few days on Instagram and will shortly be publishing a video of the whole sequence throughout June along with my plans for what's next. The picture on the left shows a section of the work so far with contributions by fellow artists young and old and some reluctant graphitists. Watch this space!

I have updated my website, please take a look. I am showing new work recently completed using a laminating technique with stitching, eco printing and acrylic on paper. The "Fragments" series in double matted mounts can be purchased with or without frames. I can offer frames in black or white: 30cm square mounted £30, framed £50 and 50cm square mounted £70, framed £100. If you are interested in these or any of my work please send me a message via the website to discuss the different options and carriage costs.

Looking forward to long sunny days for the rest of July and August and I hope to have more goodies on my website with some workshop ideas in September. Have a great summer everyone and don't forget to follow me on Instagram and Face Book where I post ideas, new work and videos on different processes. Thank you for taking the time to read my ponderings and if you have enjoyed my studio news please do let me know in the comments.

Best wishes JaneS.

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