A few months ago I got my hands on "Collage with Color", a book by Jane Davies, published in 2005 and now out of print, but still available on Amazon. Some of the techniques suggested include
- palette knife application
- spritzing and blotting
- drip transfer
- gesso resist
- crayon resist and more!
I began by using paper from a sketchbook pad, though many of these techniques would also work on cloth. I also found an old jar of "clear gesso". A bit like modelling paste, this can be applied to the paper with a brush or a credit card, and then textures can be created by scratching, combing, or stamping into the wet product. Once dry, opaque and transparent pigments can be applied in a variety of ways to add depth and interest.
Here are a few of the collage papers I recently made:
|clear gesso applied with brush in basketweave pattern;|
painted yellow and scraped; orange paint circles stamped on
|"sgraffito" technique with a comb dragged through clear gesso |
to create horizontal and vertical curves;
yellow, then orange, paint applied and scraped
|Lego-type board pressed into wet gesso randomly, then dried;|
paint applied with sponge.
|comb dragged through wet gesso in basketweave pattern;|
paint applied then scraped off
|No gesso used here.|
The black paint was applied by stamping with the eraser end of a pencil.
The streaking of transparent paint (thinned with glazing medium)
over opaque paint makes an interesting surface.
|stamp pressed into wet gesso; |
finished with at least three colours of paint
the horizontal and vertical bands are made by
scraping the surface with a credit card
|This one began when used as a blotter to lift paint from another paper.|
|And this one began when a stencil loaded with paint was pressed|
onto its surface. More stamping followed.
|Transparency-on-transparency works its magic.|
Sometimes a little "mess-therapy" is just the diversion we need to get back into the studio. And it's always great to have a supply of interesting collage papers on hand for future projects.