As an eight grader, we read a book in class called My Family and Other Animals. It’s a true story written by British conservationist Gerald Durrell recounting his youth growing up in Greece among nature. Such a fascinating read that as an adult, I read it again and still so fascinated that I could read it over and over again! And so came this inspiration when I was following the final lesson in Chapter 3 of Tracy Verdugo’s Story Painting classes. This lesson is called “Wild Whimsical Collage” which involves, well, collages! And with the collages come some old Hello Kitty labels and tags from which I based my piece.
Starting with a Background
In the lesson, Tracy begins by creating a background on a large watercolour paper by stamping on some leftover paint and spreading it with some wet brush. I myself used Canson’s A3-sized watercolor paper and as I had already used up my leftover paint decided to improvise. It’s been a long while since using Gelli Plate printing! With some acrylic paint, I proceeded in making random prints using the small circle, square and triangular plates. Pink, green and blue acrylic paints were used. On the gelli plates I would doodle in some bunnies and flowers with a cocktail stick. Then the leftover paint remaining on the brayer (the small rollers with which I applied the paint on the plates) were rolled onto the paper. Any further remaining paint was then wiped down with wet tissue and then smeared on to. Waste not want not!
Hello Kitty Collages
I am an avid Hello Kitty collector and whenever I buy their stuff, I tend to keep all the tags and labels, even boxes, which come with it. Not only waste not want not, but I can’t bring myself to throw away anything with Hello Kitty illustrated! And so I have a bunch of labels accumulated. Perhaps it would be best that I make use of them one day, and this was a good start. And along with the Hello Kitty came some collages made of paper napkins featuring a Pink Flamingo and Koala Bear as well as a school of fish. I continued adding more collages including paper napkins with flower patterns, wrapping paper and scraps of origami paper…
Once I was happy with the collage arrangement, I decided to finish it off with some craft stamps and gel pen doodles. I used Distress Ink and Oxides by Rangers for the stamping (more flowers) which were sitting in my drawers ready to be used again. Great to go back to them! And here we are!
Although I have dabbled a bit with collages in my mixed media work, this is actually the first time creating a full collage art. This is once again another chance to venture out of my comfort zone. And what fun that was too! As mentioned in the past, participating in classes are a great way to try something different and dip into the unexpected. I would most definitely like to do more collage art like this, perhaps using more Hello Kitty labels again!
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