I had a brainstorm the other day when I was browsing the Inspiration All Around Us blog, and thinking about whether I wanted to try the current challenge or not. I decided that I did, but that I wanted to experiment with a variation on the collage work I have done in the past. Sometimes my collages are based on images, and sometimes I just "paint" with scraps of paper I find or alter. For this challenge I decided to combine a painting technique I learned from artist Shelby Keefe with my own collage work. Keefe does beautiful impressionistic oil paintings that have under painting of complimentary colors. Here I asked myself what would happen if I did a watercolor under painting in complimentary colors, then applied paper in the colors of the design over that, being careful to leave some of the opposite color to peek through and enliven the image.
This first photo shows my source image, the current challenge photo (cropped), and the watercolor first layer. I'm working on 140 lb. Arches paper here, which seems OK because the collage image is only 6x11 inches. If it were larger I would work on something stiffer, like 300 lb. watercolor paper or illustration board.
I got out my envelopes of papers I have ready to go, sorted by color. Some are used as is, some are old pages from vintage magazines, maps, or other papers which I have glazed with acrylic color thinned down with gel medium. I try to use a variety of sizes, some with print, some plain. This stage has the yellow table cloth, with the blue peeking through in places.
The source photo has a neutral back wall, but I wanted something more lively, so I chose some turquoise papers, and let the yellow gold underneath show a bit.
I have not started the peaches or cherries, but have hope that they will be clear enough to recognize and interesting.