Much of creative discovery is propelled by laziness — or at least in my case, it is. It’s not that I mind performing lots of discrete steps or putting in the time (sometimes an obscene amount of time, I might add), it’s that I don’t always love some of the individual steps — for instance, gluing shit down.
Enter the scene: 8 1/2 x 11” sticky paper designed to be fed into an inkjet printer. Oh, am I psyched about this!
Step one: rip and cut collage elements. Place on blank page. No glue. Photograph.
This is as ephemeral as you can get, by the way, because by the end of this process, this arrangement will no longer exist. Digital record only. Do I mind the curling edges and the shadows produced by them? Sometimes. Sometimes not.
Step two: run photo of unglued collage through a bunch of filters using dianaphoto app.
My favorites below combined the collage and a photo I took of very weathered wood — perhaps a window opening to a slave cabin? I don’t remember. Using the “roll the dice” function for shuffling images in dianaphoto means I don’t always recognize what comes up and, having 13,000+ pictures on my phone, I don’t necessarily want to track down the source (see laziness, above).
Step three: select one photo of a layered collage and print onto sticky paper. Trim and stick to sketchbook page.
Step four: pillage elements from original collage (remember, nothing was glued down) and adhere them to the print/layered version.
I have trouble getting the interface between my phone and printer to do what I want it to, so I often just go with what comes out. In this case the slight change in scale served the design.
PS Sometimes I use the app “whitagram” to add a white border around an image so that when I print it, the image is smaller. In this case, I didn’t.
PPS The photo of the weathered wood was taken with the app “Hipstamatic” which applied the off-white faux paper photo border and also muted some of the color.
Maybe I’ll try to find the original after all. But first, it’s shrimp scampi for lunch (inspired by Melissa Clark’s cooking video on NYTimes cooking app) and then I’ve got to bake Za’atar Parmesan Pinwheels (same app) for a 75th bday party tonight!
The two female faces showed up in an earlier collage, some filtered versions below.
We walked in the woods today. The frogs were LOUD.
Next door neighbor’s yard crew showed up for the first time this season today. After asking them to take their ladder off of my Rose of Sharon sapling near the curb, I retired to the basement. Two leaf blowers went on and on but I didn’t care. My new plan. My sanctuary!
Cleaned out three bins of fabric, worked on D’s quilt until I ran out of bobbin thread, and made this little collage, above.
The initial three-house black and white was a gelatin print made with a cardboard and onion bag resist.
We just had an early and simple dinner: grilled cheese sandwiches and leftover soup. For real sustenance, we listened to Biden’s speech from this morning.
Opener: The Hanged Man was right to hand in the box of scraps I chose to rifle through. A suitable symbol for certain aspects of my childhood. Perhaps this explains my attraction to the cross as a symbol. I return to it again and again.
When I do this work, collage work specifically, the old crap has a way of showing up. I don’t apologize for it, though an uglier subject can hardly be conjured.
But it’s all so long ago and after so many hands and hearts offered one kind of healing or another, it does surprise me a little — the persistence of childhood trauma as a theme.
PS I did not sleep a wink last night which means I was awake at the time of the partial lunar eclipse in Gemini. The cloudy sky prevented any viewing. What wind and rain we had yesterday and through much of the night. A disturbance of the atmosphere!
Interesting that I skipped right over Acey’s* Prompt 9 —
“BE the prompt you want to see.
Express what you most want, need, and seek as our shared landscape begins to look more and more like a collage project gone rogue and dark beyond salvation.”
This is what I came up with just now. Think: surrender and trust. The background looks like a world-sized globe but actually depicts teeny creatures. So — I’ll take the collage to mean I want surrender and trust personally as well as on a world-wide scale.
I don’t know what the tattooed quote says, but the inked wings on the dancer’s back are clear enough. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the power of the young — how they are the voters and innovators the world needs.
Meanwhile it’s a writing day.
Except that I just made these collages as well. More on them later. I had “care package” in mind making them. Took the stamps off a literal package that came yesterday (thank you, Michelle!!)
The dark-robed trawler is an old collage. The white silhouette new. I love how the girl climbing stairs has flung her arms out like the skateboarder. Like the wings.
Sorry if I am not caught up on others’ blogs. I feel stretched right now. But know that I’m loving seeing everyone’s’ creations and finding Acey’s prompts more than stimulating!