Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Paper Collages Napoleon/Blues/Bombshell - Using Image I Choose

Napoleon Strut, Singing the Blues, Bombshell

I belong to a small group of artists that meet twice a month to jump-start the creative process, critique, and learn together.  One of our "practices" is to make paper collages. We change the rules around to mix it up and make the exercises challenging, but I will talk more about that later on in the week..  

The three paper collages above were just done by myself using my own choice of images. These are fun since I don't  have to follow any rules.  I grab an image that I like and then search for another image that somehow connects with the first image by color, shape, theme, just something that sparks me, them I am on my way.  

My "start" with the Napoleon Strut was the eyeball and the half circle half on top - repeating shapes always works.  In Singing the Blues the curled up gal sitting in the trumpet was the start.  And in the Bombshell the lighthouse rays connecting to the blonde's head somehow tickled me.

The other thing about collage is after the piece is finished I look at what I have chosen and it usually tells me a story about how I am feeling about something. Our good trumpet playing friend moved away to Maine two years ago and I was saddened by their departure.  I didn't make Singing the Blues specifically about them leaving, but clearly my feelings came out with this piece. 

If I don't find anything that creates a spark, I move on to another image.  This is collage, so I do insist that I don't just find an image that I love and keep it whole, after all this IS collage.  If I use the entire found images I haven't contributed to the piece, so I feel I must cut the images up and add to them. If I adore an image, I may scan it in to "preserve it", but heck - I have millions of images and nothing is that precious!

I find starting with a couple of pieces of binder board (just non acidic cardboard) is a great way to start. that way the "edges" of the piece are established and they keep me in the boundary, and makes me aware of "framing" right away.

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