Sunday, November 18, 2012

matting and teaching

Part of my purpose for having a blog like Collagist is to provide some instruction to whoever might be able to put it to good use. Here I was trying to decide whether to use a black mat with white interior or black interior. Here I show both. It became apparent that the white interior worked better for this piece (although the black interior makes the piece a little more subtle, and I don't mind that). The real deciding factor was how the interior affected the upper right-hand corner. Since the black background of the piece "bleeds" into the black mat interior as opposed to contrasting with the white, I decided to go with the white. What do you think? Enjoy!

Ekphrastic tribute to Kurt Vonnegut

Given the fact that "Slaugterhouse 5" had such a big influence on me, I decided to create an ekphrastic collage in tribute to Kurt Vonnegut. My idea was really triggered by my coming across the "Blazing inferno of flaming corpses" text from a trashy pulp magazine of "true crime". I have plenty of German text materials in my workspace and I figured I could find an appropriate war scene to include. The "History of the World" book binding was a valuable addition as well, I think. The problem was trying to get some slaughterhouse images. I had in mind what I wanted; I just wasn't sure where I might get those elements. Of course friends had suggested getting something from E-Bay or from "the internet". But I am weirdly stubborn about procuring elements in that way. It's weird; it's a self-imposed restriction and I can't really explain why getting materials from garage sales or auctions feels more "real" for me. But that's what I do. So you can probably guess how uber-excited I was when I came across a meat curing book when I was helping my friend clean out his mother's house! He and his wife know that I am weird (quirky), but I think I even surprised them when I expressed SO much excitement about the meat curing book. SO here's the finished product! Enjoy!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

The Memory Project

I am the Advisor for the Art Club at Utica College. One of the students came across "The Memory Project" on the web (see This is an initiative whereby disadvantaged children get a "portrait" of themselves drawn or painted by various artists (or art students) around the world. The students are VERY excited to be part of this project, as am I! Of course, there is a fee for doing this (which I told the students I would cover). What a great idea! Here is the photo of the child for whom I will do a portraiture collage. It'll be my first attempt at a representative portrait. I have some ideas in my head and I hope that the child will appreciate a collage (i.e., rather than a painting or drawing). It should be rather unique, I suppose. I will post the finished product when I complete it (not due until February... but I'm ready to get started). I've obscured the eyes as, understandably, we are not suppose to identify the children on the web.

Collaborative collage diptych

My cousin Dan Sanders and I have finished our collaborative collage project. We both started with the Queen Elizabeth element and did not show each other what we were doing until we were both finished (I showed the original "kernel" photo in an earlier post). So here's the finished product! We've entitled it "Two Queens". Dan works digitally until he has identified the elements he wants. Then he prints those elements and creates the composition. I consider myself an "analog collagist" and thus only use printed material from magazines and such. This piece will be on display at my upcoming two-person exhibit at The Black Gryphon Restaurant in Elizabethtown, PA (Dec. through March). Enjoy!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Spreading the "wealth"

I am teaching a creativity course this semester at Utica College. I convinced the students in the class to come in at 8:00 instead of 8:30 a.m. so that we could have a little extra time to spend on making collages.  I think that they really liked the activity and they created some interesting collages. Here are a few samples and a great photo of the entire class showing off their works! Enjoy!