I have spent my studio time since last March creating small collages.
While collage is my go to way of expressing myself, I was interested in looking at collages that were simple vs. those with more complex layering.
It was interesting to see how pieces with simple shapes and lines (the top 2) used the space of the page.
There is a certain dynamic that occurs with limited color and the way the shapes and lines
engage the space. These pieces do have some paint but often it is minimal and used to
enhance or extend the already pale surfaces.
In the lower three collages I experimented with the ways to use paint on the background or
a combination of paint and collaged paper before adding other focal elements.
In some pieces the paint was applied with a brayer leaving a mark different
from that of a brush or palette knife.
Mark making became increasingly important as did the mark making tools:
sticks, skewers, brushes, crayons, pens, pencils.
I found myself collaging through out the processes; I would often find that I worked back and forth between collage, paint, mark making and more collage and paint.
I ultimately wanted a surface that looked spontaneous and effortless.
The work was often neither spontaneous or effortless.
Maybe that is because this way of thinking and working is new for me.
It reminded me of my work in quilt making where I moved from creating pieces that were made with
the rules of traditional quilt making...quarter inch seam allowances, a specific number of hand quilting stitches per inch, clean and neat...to raw edged pieces with a loose and free look.
It all takes time.
It takes a different mind set and a certain willingness to just "go for it!"
Easier said than done, at least for me.
I am still working toward that truly spontaneous way of working.