Collage Art, Step by Step


Giveaway is now closed.

Many of you are new readers and viewers of my art. Occasionally I want to bring back a post from several years ago and share techniques with you that I may not have touched on recently. Today’s post is one of those. I’d like to walk you through how I made this collage page in my art journal.

Collage art can mean a lot of things. Think mixed media on steroids and you will just be touching the tip of what you can do. I like to mix collage with tangling and various mixed media – and you have them all in this piece. I started with a magazine. Actually a Coldwater Creek catalog, a TOMS catalog and a fashion magazine. I flipped through and picked out elements I might like to put together. I specifically looked for clothes I could mix and match – but from different sources. Feet and shoes came from another source. The two arms came from different pages in the same catalog. I shifted all my pages around on the desktop and began cutting out the parts I wanted to keep.

I took the shirt and placed it under several faces – trying to find the right ‘fit.’ I just wasn’t finding anything that made me smile.

I liked most of these pieces and really, really liked those flowers! A lot!

I kept looking for faces and heads that could go with that shirt – then I saw this face on the bottom. You know. The one with the top of her head lopped off. And I thought . . . flowers!

So I put them together for a look-see . . .

. . . and boom! I had my head! I trimmed up the sides of the flowers, lined the edges up with the sides of the head and glued the pieces together with a tape runner.

I realized right away that my girl was going to be too tall for the page I intended to glue her on. So, I pulled out a taller journal and made a watercolor background with my Fireworks! ink sprays. Dried it right up with a heat gun and I was ready to roll with my collaging.

Here’s a close up of that head. Isn’t it pretty?

One of the elements I found that I really liked was this little white goose. In collage work, the pieces don’t have to be true to life. So I paired this huge head up with the little shirt I picked out, stuck the pants legs and feet and boots underneath and glued that whole unit together. What a pain! Hahahaha! I didn’t think about it ahead of time, but it would have been a lot easier to tape run if I had mounted the whole thing on a piece of card stock first.

I tucked the other little arm in under the side of the shirt – this would have been easier on card stock as well. Then I stepped back and enjoyed my little girl. She is so stinkin’ cute! But. She wasn’t grounded. All she needed was a hot air balloon in her hand. So I added some lines and started to tangle All Boxed Up.

All Boxed Up prior to shading.

At this point I totally got into the zone and forgot all about photos. Sorry. Here are some of the things I did:

  • I added shading to All Boxed Up with Dina Wakley’s Scribble Sticks.
  • I stamped some black circles onto the page using old medicine bottles and a black StazOn ink pad.
  • In a couple of those circles I added the tangle kuke.
  • I used stencils to add some numbers and some insects. Please don’t tell me butterflies and dragonflies are not insects. They are, aren’t they?
  • I added color to the insects with dabbers and stamping ink.
  • Decorated them with Spica pens from Sakura.
  • I used Ranger Texture Paste and some stencils to add bricks to the top and fish to the side of the page.
  • And, I glued a cute little Bijou snail to the bottom.

Here is a close up of the tangling I started on the face and flowers. I used a Sharpie fine liner, a white gel pen, a gold gel pen and just had fun!

Next I looked for ways to enhance the page. I used that same gold gel pen for details on the shirt and pants. I used Color Box Chalk ink pads and dabbers to add color to the fish.

I had gotten a great deal on Liquid Pearls on Joggles recently, so I pulled out several colors and made cute little dots of color here and there all over the page.

Can you see all the liquid pearl dots everywhere?

And still I wanted to do more. It didn’t seem complete yet. So I outlined and tangled those fish! I used an old Copic multiliner that I didn’t mind destroying.

I pulled out a Graphic 1 micron and started adding dots to draw attention to certain areas. A green Spica pen went on those lips and I did not like it, so I made the eyes green to balance it out.

Let’s see, what have I missed? I added some basic blox texture to those bricks behind her head. And water bubbles around the fish and some Spica color to the kukes. I also used a stencil and stamp pad to add some circle textures to three areas of the page.

I felt this still needed a little finish work, so I added black circles around those stenciled circles areas. I really loved this collage at that point. But I reserve the right to change my mind at any given time to go back and add more! Hahahaha! Collage art! So much fun! I think you will enjoy it if you give it a try. It is a really forgiving kind of art and anything is fair game! Just remember to have fun.

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10 thoughts on “Collage Art, Step by Step

  1. I would like to try this sometime there is just so much to look at in this piece. What does bijou mean as in bijou snail?

    • it’s a great project and a lot of fun! it has to fit into the curriculum somewhere ­čÖé

  2. It’s the sunflowers that do it for me too – together with the little snail……Bijou likes to see what’s happening all over the world doesn’t he?? The way you add tangling is a wonder & such fun to see your process – thank you for allowing visitors to look over your shoulder whilst you work.

  3. Fun. I always see amazing results from collagd artists and find them fascinating. This one is no exception. Love the head with the flowers!

    • thanks, Beth, it is fun – I never know how it is going to turn out until I’m done.

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