Out and about in my beautiful city (I have lived in Brighton now roundabout for 10 years!) on Marathon day I was walking along the seafront and I took this picture:
I didn’t think much of it really, I really like the sea, and its complete vastness, so I took a picture. Then, when I started writing my previous blog post (If you haven’t read it, you know what to do) I thought more about making it into a collage. (Thanks blog!)
When looking at a photograph or setting and its collage potential, I think about these three things (and maybe they will help you too)
1.Shape- It has good shapes, and you have to think about the shapes when looking for a collage picture. Lots of triangles and quite simple oblongs.
2.The background- I think its useful when backgrounds are relatively simple. The beach, the ocean and the sky are very simple colours and shapes.
3.Colour- Colour and how you are going to be able to interpret those colours is really important when thinking about a collage. I think lots of bright colours work really well in collage, and are you going to be able to recreate those colours through paper.
Think about it- you can mix paint together but you cannot mix paper.
I really liked the orange/pink colour in the sails, and as I enjoy working on brightly colured collages, I thought, as it fitted these three things, I would give it a try.
So I printed the picture out, it was from my phone so not the best quality, but I had not really anticipated taking many pictures that day so it had to do. I think being a perfectionist can sometimes hold you back, afraid to do something for fear it might not be any good, but I just start something and see what happens. Like this website!
The tracing paper is from WHSmith (not special tracing paper) and daylight with a room with lots of windows will give you more than enough light to see the picture well behind.
You will need a soft pencil, The one I am using is beautiful and perfect in everyway, just like the person it originally came from.
Once you have traced your picture you can begin transferring these shapes to your papers and begin cutting and sticking.
For paper, the list is endless. For a collage you can look for magazines, newspapers, any type of paper. I looked at the recycling and some leaflets we had in the kitchen to see if the colours could match! All the colours in the picture were colours I could recreate from paper I had. I did not have to go and buy coloured paper (which I know can be quite expensive.)
I often do not use a whole piece of paper, so I tend to keep a folder of bits of coloured paper that are more scraps, but sometimes all you will need is a line of black, or a dash of red, and so it is really handy to keep a scrap paper folder.
Something I feel worth mentioning is that yes, equipment and materials are important when making artwork, you will need some bits and bobs. However, in case I forgot to mention I am a struggling artist (I am sure I will mention it again…) so LACK OF MATERIALS SHOULD NOT BE A BARRIER IF YOU WANT TO CREATE.
If you are an artist you are creative and part of being creative is finding ways around barriers. You just have to make the end result look good. Plus even then, beauty is in the eye of the beholder right?
I really want my website and artwork to of course look good, but my work is also real and achievable on all budgets and I will try and incorporate some thrifty ideas as and where I have found things, into my site as I go.
Please see my collage portfolio for more refined collages, but as an afternoon relaxation I am pleased with the result.
Creativity is not just artwork. It is a way of life. Thanks for reading.