Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Mixed Media Collage

I've been slow to get back to my blog since my trip to New Mexico.  I'm sorry about that!  I sort of crashed when I got home last week and this week I've been madly working on a custom order that has proven to be a bit of a challenge.

I had a great time in New Mexico with my friend, Marian.  We have the sort of friendship that we can do nothing and it's still a load of fun!  When we get together for our annual visit it generally includes watching lots of movies, eating lots of yummy food that is NOT good for you, talking, talking, talking, and some sort of creative project.

This year we were not very inspired.  I don't know why, but I think partly because we didn't have a plan beforehand.  Generally before I arrive we come up with an idea or a medium we would like to try so we can hit the ground running.  Well, this year we didn't do that.  We learned our lesson there.  We will plan ahead better next time.  We didn't even get started on anything creative until several days into my week's stay.  (Possibly we were too distracted by her new Endless Wave swimming pool??)  So, we finally decided we would just try to do some mixed media collages using things she had stashed in her studio. 

Here is what we came up with:

This was my first attempt.  I did some color washes with acrylic paints, added some scrunched up tissue paper and this interesting material that is actually used to make casts.  I attempted to make some textural patterns using glue, but that didn't work out so well.  I added a little bling with glitter.  All in all, not bad, but certainly not a masterpiece.  Here is a little close up view:

You can see a little bit of the texture and the sparkle of the glitter.
I would like to show you Marian's first attempt, but it's somewhere in a dumpster in New Mexico.  She got frustrated and threw it away!  I admire that sort of courage!  I will often make myself miserable in an attempt to get it 'right'.  Not Marian!  If she knows a project is headed on a course that she can't correct, she is perfectly willing to toss it and begin again.
This is her second attempt:
She also used the casting material, tissue, paints and glitter.  She added letters cut from the newspaper to add the sentiment LISTEN. 
I wanted one more try at this project, so I started with a long skinny canvas and covered it with newspaper.  I liked the graphic quality of the type.
I did some colorwashing over most of the sections of newspaper.  I used some very thin chipboard and drew patterns on it with a good ol' black Crayola crayon, then I washed over it with watered down paint.  The wax of the crayon caused the paint to resist.  I was able to pull out the right letters from a headline to put together my phrase.  Everything was looking a wee bit too linear, so I found two different sized plastic caps, brushed paint on them, and stamped on the circles.  I coated the entire piece with a gloss finish Mod Podge.  Again, not the greatest piece of art I have ever made, but I like it nonetheless.
Marian and I are both creative people.  We met when our booths were next to each other at a craft show a LOOONG time ago and hit it off immediately.  We enjoy working on projects and trying things that are outside our comfort zone.  Stay tuned next week, when we talk about our 'kits'. 
OK, I have to get back to the custom order that is giving me fits. 
Have a great day!


  1. Sounds like a wonderful friendship, and like you had a great time! These collages are great, thanks for sharing!

    I had to laugh about Marian throwing away her first attempt. I bet it turned out much better than she thought. We are always more critical of our own artwork, aren't we? I am very glad I kept my first attempts at clay sculpting... I get a good laugh looking back! But most of all, I can appreciate how far I've come!

    1. My sister has the two very first clay miniatures I ever made. She brought them out over Christmas so we could have a really good laugh. And I was so proud of them! UGH!! One day maybe I will blog about them. It is fun to see how far I've come!

  2. I always love the projects you & Marian do when you are together!! These are no exception - great work!
    I remember your first clay pieces & whike they are funny it's cool to see how far your work has come. Plus, jokes like "oh yes, that was the year of big heads" will always bring on smiles!

    Yay for another fun trip to NM!

    1. Ah, yes! The Year of the Big Heads!! That does make me laugh!!

  3. I really hate this attempt of mine as well but I can easily laugh at my messes. I love your second piece! We certainly weren't inspired. I think we were water logged from my fabulous new pool! :) I had a GREAT time and look forward to meeting up in Nebraska for Lisa's niece Hilary's wedding. Hilary is a MOST special person in Lisa's life so it will be an exceptional event!

    I also enjoyed Hilary and Trina's remarks about first clay attempts. Oh boy....wait until we show you an upcoming blog. I had the opportunity to attempt a first experience using clay from our kits and it's NOT pretty but it was loads of fun! Clearly I have no shame!

    1. You are such a fearless crafter! I know you don't think you are, but you are! I think this year it was more about the company than the project. I had a GREAT time, as always!! I always feel so at home at your home!

      And I can't wait to show everyone our kits! THOSE are always fun projects!

  4. Lisa, I think that you and Marian did a fabulous job with these. I am so impressed. I guess I would be like Marian and throw out my piece if I didn't like it, but we are so critical of ourselves sometimes.

    And it is ok to just veg out and do nothing. We have to take time to just relax and renew ourselves.

    Great job, girls.


    1. Thanks, Arlene! We always have a great time, and I have to say, when we are together we are the QUEENS of vegging out! HAHA!