Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Crazy Collage Materials

I’ve often been asked what I use to make my collages, maybe because most are very different from other people’s.

Here is my usual answer, and to be sure, it is the short list!

I use scrapbook paper, origami paper, tissue paper, gift-wrapping paper, cut up gift bags, greeting cards, almost anything printed.

*Maps, old shopping lists, old register receipts. Vintage stuff like that, called “ephemera.”

*Old black and white photos. Color photos that are printed off on a black and white printer looks really classic and stylish to me.

*Printer paper painted w/ acrylics, then stamped, makes patterned paper.

*Paper towels are the main paper in these two collages called  "Fear Less1 & 2.” 

Fear Less

Fear Less II

*Tissue paper is the main paper in two of my collages, one  never photographed, and one here called  “La Sirena.” 

La Sirena

*Old (or new) calendars are particularly wonderful, have many images, and from November thru January 15 are usually reasonable and then half price for the rest of the year.

*Old botany books, old anatomy studies of insects  ...   Audubon’s images are all good.
I like the insect ones for moths and butterflies (and a colorful caterpillar or two).

*Same type of books for mushroom hunters, bird watchers and all things scientific look great to me. Even graph paper changes the look of a collage quickly. What are those thingys you use to make circles in geometry class? Ah! *lightbulb goes on*  a compass, with a pencil at one end, they are fun too.

*Old album covers, sheet music.

*Postcards have nice images. Art postcards from museum sites are fabulous. For example

Museums have gift shops online, (better yet in person)  often have sizes larger than a card, but smaller than a poster. (Sites for digital collage images will be posted at a later time.)

*Photos of vases, jewelry, ribbon, lace buttons, medals also are great.

*I especially have great results with clothing tags, the paper ones are sometimes beautiful. You can check out a collage I made almost entirely of tags here [link] Some of those tags came with the fancy silk knots, the fake “gems."  Most are from the junior’s section of stores that sell fancy expensive clothing, so I get them at retailers that sell "brand names for less!”  Examples in the US are TJMaxx & Marshals. They are separate from the price tags and the shop keepers know I am helping myself to the extra tags.

*I’m not above cutting up old art books, high schools are sometimes looking to get rid of them. Libraries are also sometimes getting rid of books.


I haven’t used 3-D objects in a long time, but …

*Then there’s fun stuff like brads, eyelets, grommets, almost any stationer’s store item.  The brad was the center of the sun in a smaller never photographed piece of mine. Actual ribbon, yarn, buttons and lace, actual fabric, charms, beads, glitter & stickers.
Check out your or your friends’ children’s art supplies, or search your local craft emporium in the kids section  (near teachers supplies).

This stuff is not only fun, but usually much cheaper than paints and such! 

*Other people use tape and transfers and you can find links to tutorials on this page.

A compendium of collage resources is

Many, many artists will use mainly “found objects” but I’ll leave that blog to any of you who use them, so you can speak more fully about them.  Purses made from old vinyl records  is my favorite!

Tell me if you make collages using something new to you from this list, and send me the link to it, I’d love to see them!  

What’s more I’ll post them here! 

Goodnight from New York,