sewing pattern tissue, wallpaper, stamping, clipped image and text, gold leaf
The battered carry-on travel case of paper, scissors, glue and miscellaneous art toys I dragged to my weekend workshop is back in the studio, and I found myself faced with a couple good sized collages I didn't like much. Throwing them away seemed wasteful, but they took up lots of prime real estate. So I cut them up.
One of the collages had a fairly good-sized area I liked, so I just cropped it and put the saved image aside. "Fare thee well, we shall meet another time." The other collage, though bright and filled with images and words that appealed to me, didn't work as a design. So I turned it over and cut several 4x6 inch sections (post card size), and had several 2x4 inch pieces left over. This morning I started with the small pieces. I thinned down some gesso and washed over the piece. Then I added more: some torn map pieces, a word, an image. Next I glazed over that with some thinned down acrylic paint. I added some gold leaf for sparkle. Then I added some decorative paper (part of a very old dictionary page) to the back side, and coated everything with acrylic gel medium. I punched a hole in the top and added brown string. Now they are still my original collage with all the elements that attracted me then, but with new elements.
I liked the idea of reworking the old collage. By cutting from the back, the designs on the front were random, but surprisingly, they were appealing. Each has some of the colors, words, and images that originally called out to me, but being only a fragment, it is ambiguous. By looking at each section I was able to strengthen the design and unify it with paint glazes. I had fun, and I am happy with how the mini-collages look. I'll try bigger sizes later this week.