I thought I might share a bit of collage process with you. The first two are in true what I call crazy quilting style form. I perfected this quilt technique to paper after a year of trial and error. The third collage illustrates one of my recent collage with me classes. speaking of, if you ever want to collage with me. please let me know! I'd love to collage with you!
This Audubon print was a gift. gosh, I love that folks think of me with these great vintage finds.
The hardest part was deciding which part of it would make good focal points. note the 5 sided centers.
I had also been given this huge book of masterpiece paintings.
which made for an amazing opportunity for a selection of strips.
lately, in an effort to stay organized I have been putting projects in these poly sleeves.
I ended up with two collages with that bird print. one is a 12 x 12, which is I think the largest size I feel comfortable working in. and an 8x8, which has been my go to size for most of 2021. The strips for both of these includes masterpiece paintings strips, floral strips from the original print and even a moment of ribbon!! Another added layer that I am just loving is a blast of color made with washi tape on the exterior of the center focal. I think it mimics an inner matt or something you would see in formal framing. Lastly, of course is the machine zig zag. I've been using this very delicious heavier weight of thread and a much tinier stitch. you can really see the difference that the stitching makes.
The second piece I want to share was a "for" someone making. Here you see the beginnings of a 4x6 collage. The center image is 5 sided and is outlined with bright yellow washi tape. strips were cut from a glittery zinnia postcard, and a seed catalog.
I felt inspired by a local farmer here who has become an international star. A documentary about their story filled me with its beauty, sensitivity and hope. I watched it twice, sobbing... twice! I took pages and pages of notes. The gushy fan in me had to share a bit of my heart in return. making this small collage felt like a thank you to them. I sent it, one of my small notecards and a way too long fan letter. The farm sent me an email acknowledging what I had sent, which totally made my day.
To complete a piece I add a heavier card stock to give the collage some weight and I add a border or what they call in quilting terms a binding to the piece to give it a finished look. This binding is made from a backing which is basically a sheet of magazine cut larger than the collage and then folded over with mitered corners. Here it is now bound and stitched
My last share for today was a collage I made during a collage with me session. I am now doing these sessions quarterly. Folks subscribe. I send a prompt through email and my students participate whenever is a best fit for them. Amber of course loves it when I teach!
( I think this photo should be part of the 2022 Amber The Cat Calendar. shhhhh don't tell anyone)
In a creative subconscious collage session one sets aside 5 minutes and flips through a resource - like a magazine or picture book. The idea is to let the images speak to you as you page through. when the time is up, you then have a pile of images that you are to work from.
You then set the time again for 30 minutes and assemble - often the images will find their own way and speak to you. This definitely happened for me with this collage.
My compulsion to create in this crazy quilting style is real. morphing the bird with the man completely made sense. the bird is a version of myself resisting aging. the man is laughing not at me, but with me, reminding me to lighten up a bit. to not take life so seriously. I then added strips of grey. it felt bleak to me so I added the strips of color, although a blur of color - they too made sense, In the bottom right corner are items on a shelf all in a row. what I need sometimes to feel a sense of order and safety. at the bottom are fluffy clouds. the stuff dreams are made of. Making with a timer encourages you to make and to not fuss. to follow your instincts.
When I teach this process I advocate NOT using words within a creative subconscious mind collage. I feel words fit well in vision or dream boards or in journals. words fit well in memes or in advertising. For me I want the images to speak. not the words. In my collage journals words do find me. and I set aside a page in the back for all the words. In this particular session the word brains would not leave me alone. so....I gave it space, on the back of my collage
Photography = a never ending opportunity to capture visual celebrations.