I have a large supply of brown paper bags because plastic shopping bags are illegal in my town and I'm always forgetting to bring the reusable ones. I find that painting on the brown bags and other "trash" is a great way to loosen up and get into the process not the finished product. For this piece I started taping bags together to make a 2 x 3 ft surface, then used 5 different kinds of tape, collage and paint.
One of the most fun things about this collage was the lively comment thread on FB after I asked for title suggestions. Titles included "50 shades of Mouse" (several people saw mice, I don't see them, do you?), "Got My Brown Paper Bag and My Take Home Pay", "Sacked" and my favorite, "Scraps of Life".
I For my latest "creative experiment" I used raw canvas, lightly primed with white gesso as my surface.
I used a variety of charcoal, pastels and pencils in black, white to make marks, along with more white gesso and a spray bottle with a rag as erasing tools.
I made random mark making then defined shapes that "spoke" to me and "erased" the areas that I found distracting with white gesso.
My ah-ha moment came when I saw a mid century upholstered chair in the lower right area. I do love mid century chairs! I gave it a home, a lamp and a friend.
This experiment was really freeing because I never, ever draw and have long considered it something I just couldn't do. (Like driving in NYC or surfing). The selection of drawing tools were left here by my ex 15 years ago, and being a packrat I held on to them and even remembered where I put them.
I've hit a bit of a roadblock when it comes to collage so I decided to try something completely different. I signed up for an online class "Grit and Grace, The Heart of Co-Creative Painting" with Katie Kendrick. The first assignment, shown here, was a mark making exploration. I tried a new product, Liquitex Clear Gesso to build up layers, and its already one of my favorites. I think it will be great to prep vintage books for mixed media as well.
My primary medium is collage and mixed media. Creating this piece was a very interesting journey territory because I only used drawing tools and paint.
Do you have an old photo album around the house and wish you knew something more about the people in it? What are their names? How are they related? What were they like?
I have a very old photo album I found in that attic. I don't know if the people in it are relatives or if someone in my family thought it was super cool and picked it up as a garage sale. I find it really interesting to look it over on a rainy day and imagine what they might have been like.
I chose several photos from the Lunagirl Edwardian Gothic digital collage sheet and decided to experiment with the idea of giving them a story. A vintage Nancy Drew book was used as the base and Golden Matte Medium strengthened the vintage book pages. It worked really to preserve the delicate look of the pages and provide a substantial surface for the paint and collage elements.
I'm on the Lunagirl design team and the challenge for October is "Gothic". Its really been a lot of fun! The challenge is open to create in any media and is open through the end of the month.
This mixed media collage is inspired by Lunagirl Edwardian Gothic digital collage sheet and the fact that my roommate thinks that moths are the souls of dead people. Yes, moths are surrounded with a ton of international folk lore associating them with death. An Edgar Allen Poe story, The Sphinx, was inspired by moth lore.
Maybe my friend doesn't really believe it, but she does say it. She says it when the moths are looming around my brown rice and when they are hovering around my treasured vintage cashmere sweaters. At that point, if she isn't in the room, I admittedly will do away with them in one way or another. They can go the easy way (cooperate and go outside) or the hard way. Either way, it was much easier to accomplish before she started hounding me about how they are souls of the dead.
If you are interested in finding out more about moth lore (tis the season, right?) I highly recommend this beautifully written post by Stu Hovath on Unwinnable.
This piece is titled "Rain." The sounds of a rainstorm on the roof of my attic studio triggered up all kinds of memories of other rainy days and moods. Luckily the storm, "my playlist/soundtrack" lasted long enough for me to finish it.
I was Randel Plowman's Collage a Day project & decided to do the same for one month. It took me a few years and several of Randel's excellent online workshops (where I met a supportive network of kindred spirits) to work up to it. Phewwwww, I managed to do it, and managed to go with the flow when the collages started to morph into mixed media paintings.
* It was easier than I thought, but not easy.
* It was a little scary because I was entering into unknown territory and did my best creating in a kind of meditative state. I feel like I've become a better artist but on the downside a slightly weirder person. I was already weird enough already!
* I'm going to continue because it feels like some kind of journey/quest at this point. I'm plan on experimenting with working larger (something I've never done).
I would definitely recommend committing to this kind of challenge in a chosen medium or more broadly to do anything creative as a daily practice. I also found Noah Scanlin's book 365 Make Something Every Day and Change your Life very inspirational. The subtitle is "Make Something Every Day and Change Your Life". Inside the book Noah talks about his experience and says "results may vary" but that "small, incremental steps I took every day added up to something much bigger than the individual parts".