I've been corresponding with a friend on the west coast who has recently begun her collage journey. She is gathering materials, reading books and blogs, taking workshops, getting information and inspiration online, and trying to find her own way in paint-collage-mixed media. Like a lot of us, she seems to get stuck in over-thinking each piece, and I find myself saying frequently: make MORE like that! Choose your materials or theme or images or whatever, and then DO LOTS AND LOTS of small pieces. In other words, I am suggesting that working in a series encourages you to break out of the over-thinking and preciousness of individual pieces, and think of it as a longer term process. Does any of this sound familiar? So here is a small example from my own worktable. I decided to explore the idea of using neutral colors - browns, beige, black, off-white, and see what I could come up with in a series of grid-based abstract collages.
The materials I used included these magazine images from National Geographic:
And some of my stained tissue papers, as well as some found text and dress pattern paper:
The collage studies are all approximately 5"x7". These are just that: studies. I have begun an almost daily practice of doing a few of these every day, using collage and paint. It's a simple and approachable format, and keeps my eye in practice.
The papers are cut and torn, and I used acrylic matte medium to adhere them as well as for a top coat.
Even though I thought I would use paint in these studies, I ended up using collage only.
Now they go in my pile of "collage studies", some of which I will continue to work on, and some not.Since I began doing these small studies on a regular basis, I've thought it would be really fun to get together with other artists - in person or in cyberspace - and do a "Collage-Athon", maybe spending a whole day making small collage studies. Or making ten-a-day for a given period of time; or making 100 collages in a given period of time... just a thought kicking around back there. If you have any suggestions around this, please let me know. Thanks for visiting!