Feeling Husky

Feeling Husky is a collage by Megan Coyle
“Feeling Husky” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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I’ve decided to revisit dog portraits, to tackle a series of different dog breeds. Over the years I’ve had a tendency of tackling the same sort of dog portraits, and I’d like to study a few different types this time around.

I enjoyed collaging this Husky collage. It was my first time collaging a Husky, and I enjoyed working with the shadows for the dog’s eyes and incorporating bits of texture.

Why do Artists use Texture?

Owl by collage artist Megan Coyle

Texture is the feel, appearance, or consistency of a surface. Artists use texture to add depth, interest, or balance to different areas of their artwork. Texture can exist as the illusion of different textures (feathers, sand, etc.) or it can exist as actual layers that create a feeling or consistency when touched – such as thick paint applied with a palette knife or layered paper.

Artists use texture for a number of reasons, depending on the vision behind their work. Sometimes texture is used to give the illusion of depth or making a piece seem more realistic — the more detail put into the use of texture (such as the texture of leaves, skin, etc.), the more realistic a work of art can look. Texture can help set up the atmosphere of a scene.

Other times, an artist may use texture to add interest to his or her work. It can be a stylistic choice, where an artist makes use of texture for representational, realistic works of art, or nonrepresentational, abstract works. Use of rough and smooth texture can help craft an artist’s vision.

Related to using texture for adding interest, it can also be used for balancing out compositions. Artists can use texture to help guide a viewer’s eye through a work of art. They can use smooth or rough textures in different areas to either call attention or ignore different aspects of their composition.

Texture is one of the many elements an artist can use to construct a work of art. It’s something that varies from artist to artist, with how he or she chooses to incorporate it. Artists use texture to shape their unique works of art, by using it to add depth, balance, or interest to different area’s of their artwork’s surface.

Two Figurative Collages Available at PawCasso Charity Art Auction

Strolling in the Park is a collage by Megan Coyle
“Strolling in the Park.” Collage on paper. 24″x18″

Saturday, November 3rd, 2018 6pm – 10pm
National Airport, Historic Terminal A

I’m excited to announce that I’ve donated my “Strolling in the Park” and “Figure Landscape” collages to an upcoming charity art auction called PawCasso. The event is taking place on November 3rd, and raises money for Homeward Trails Animal Rescue. You can find out more about what’s up for auction, as well as get tickets to the event, by visiting their website.

Figure Landscape is a collage by Megan Coyle
“Figure Landscape.” Collage on paper. 24″x18″

How to Stay Organized as an Artist

Yellow Flowers is a collage by Megan Coyle

It’s easy to be unorganized as an artist, especially when the materials you use for your craft keep piling up over the years as you collect or save various tools. It’s also easy to lose track of your artwork, or allow all your promotional materials and original art to clutter up your studio. Instead of letting your studio get in complete disarray, here are a few tips to keep your creative life organized:

1. Use organizers for your materials

There are all sorts of plastic drawers you can use for organizing drawing tools, scraps of paper, paint, clay, and more. Organizers will help keep your tools and materials in order, so they don’t end up scattered around your studio or home.

2. Use portfolios for 2d work

Portfolios can help organize your flat or 2d artwork, and can also serve as an excellent way to transport your artwork to other places like galleries or studios.

3. Keep track of your art inventory with a spreadsheet

Over the years, it’s far too easy to lose track of the artwork you’ve made and where it is. Creating a spreadsheet inventory, can help you keep track of where everything is. It helps to keep a thumbnail of every work of art in the spreadsheet, along with the date of creation, dimensions, location (at your home, in an exhibit, or sold to a client), client info and date sold (if applicable), exhibits/publications it’s appeared in, and if you have any additional notes on a specific work of art. Then you can keep your inventory updated whenever you create new artwork or sell and exhibit existing art.

4. Create a filing system for your marketing materials

On your computer, keep a folder filled with marketing materials that you use to promote your artwork, such as your artist resume, biography, artist statement, and any digital files of postcards or other mailers you’ve used to promote your work. By having everything maintained in one place, you can easily find your art-related materials whenever you need to promote upcoming shows. You can also throw out outdated, printed marketing materials that are no longer relevant, especially when it’s easy enough for you to print out a new, updated copy.

5. Keep a calendar dedicated to your art-related activities

Maintain a calendar that has all the dates related to your exhibits, gallery application deadlines, and art-making schedule.

6. Stick to a schedule

By sticking to a schedule for when you make artwork, and when you plan to take a couple of days off from it, is important to ensure that you are consistently making artwork and working on your craft.

7. Designate a space

If you have a studio, that should be your dedicated space for your artwork. Try not to let your artwork and materials clutter your home or non-studio spaces. If you don’t have a dedicated studio, dedicate a specific section of your home to your art-making. By defining your art space, you can constrain the materials and art to that one space, and you don’t have to declutter it from other sections of your home.

8. Get rid of what you don’t need

If you haven’t used something in a couple of years, chances are you won’t end up using it any time soon. Remove the excess by tossing out, recycling, or donating anything you haven’t used in a while. By simplifying your workspace, it’ll be a lot easier to stay organized.

 

Staying organized makes any job a lot easier. Instead of sifting through piles of marketing or art materials, having a proper filing system can make it easier to locate what you need when you need it. By keeping your creative space more organized, you’ll have an easier time running your art business.

You Can Have Your Cake

You Can Have Your Cake by collage artist Megan Coyle
“You Can Have Your Cake” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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The other day, I worked on filming another time lapse video of my collage-making process. Usually when I’ve completed a time lapse video, the collage is also finished. This was one of the few instances where I felt a need to revisit the piece and rework it a little bit. I especially wanted to reshape the plate and the shadows that were cast on and by the plate.

You can take a look at the video here:

As an artist, I often feel like my process can be disconnected from the finished works of art. Viewers don’t necessarily realize that there’s quite a bit of piecing together involved. Thus, I’d like to create more of these videos as a way to bring viewers into my studio, and give them a better glimpse of the work that goes into each collage.

Summertime Popsicle

Summertime Popsicle by collage artist Megan Coyle
“Summertime Popsicle” Collage on paper. 7″x5″
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A collage of what’s popping when it’s summer. It’s another addition to my dessert series, and even though it’s not summertime any more, I figured I’d make something inspired by the last days of summer that weren’t so long ago.

I also decided to make something a little more abstract, which was a bit of a challenge for me. I have a tendency of getting really focused on the details of my compositions, which makes it hard to take a step back and simplify my artwork. I think I’ll try to tackle more abstract pieces in the future. Sometimes I like to experiment with different subjects and materials, just to see what happens.

Photoshoot with Tim Coburn: Part 2

Portrait of Megan Coyle

Tonight I had another fun photoshoot with photographer Tim Coburn. This time I had an idea where I wanted to be surrounded by or covered in lots of magazine pages.

Portrait of Megan Coyle

Here’s a behind-the-scenes shot of getting a makeup touch up. It was fun having my hair and makeup done professionally.

Portrait of Megan Coyle

Portrait of Megan Coyle

Portrait of Megan Coyle

Portrait of Megan Coyle

Some of my favorite photos involved me throwing magazine pages up in the air. Here’s a shot of the pages pretty much hitting the ground already.

Portrait of Megan Coyle

Here he instructed me to look meditative or serious, but I couldn’t help myself but start cracking up a bit.

Portrait of Megan Coyle

Portrait of Megan Coyle

Portrait of Megan Coyle

A shot of the magazine pages mid-throw.

Portrait of Megan Coyle

And finally, this is probably my favorite somewhat-serious portrait he took.

As an artist, I love making art, but I also enjoy supporting other artists out there, like photographers. Tonight was a fun treat of bringing an idea of mine for a portrait shoot to life.

You’re Sweet as Pie

You're Sweet as Pie is a collage by collage artist Megan Coyle
“You’re Sweet as Pie” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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Some desserts are a little more intimidating to collage than others. I decided to tackle a pie, and was afraid that it might end up looking like a nondescript blob. I’m happy that this one turned out better than I expected.

This is part of my dessert still life series, where I’m tacking subjects that I used to avoid as an artist. I used to think that still life art was boring to make, and this exercise of completing a series, has made me really enjoy the art of still life – specifically, the art of food art.

Bosty goes to the Outer Banks, NC

Bosty goes to the Outer Banks

Bosty loves the beach, so he wanted to head off to the Outer Banks for the week. It might be September, but that doesn’t mean that the summer weather is over!

Bosty goes to the Outer Banks

He spent hours basking in the sun, and admiring the beautiful blue ocean. Bosty loves looking at all the colorful beach towels and umbrellas in various arrangements on the sand. He enjoyed spending the majority of his time out and about on the beach.

Bosty goes to the Outer Banks

Some days Bosty would wander across lawns right by the shore. He realized that he preferred the soft grass to the sunbaked sand.

Bosty goes to the Outer Banks

To finish his week-long adventure of lounging around by the water, Bosty decided to be a little more adventurous and go boating. He loved feeling the wind in his face as he stared off at the ocean from his perch on a kayak. Bosty definitely can’t wait to have more challenging adventures in the future!

Q & A: How Long Have You Been Making Collages?

Figure by collage artist Megan Coyle

I’ve been making collages ever since I was a kid. My first collage was made back when I was in middle school. Then for a few years, I continued to experiment with the medium. I had a tendency of working in a number of mediums and collage was simply another area I explored.

Writer's Block by collage artist Megan Coyle
“Writer’s Block” Mixed media on paper. 22″x14″
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By the time I was a senior in high school, I started exploring the process of cutting magazine strips while focusing on color and texture. Before then, my collages looked a lot more like what you think of when you think of traditional collage – where it’s obvious that the work of art was made from fragments of photographs.

Orange Girl by collage artist Megan Coyle
“Orange Girl” Collage and oil pastel on paper. 18″x12.5″
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My last year in high school was when I started painting with paper, where I manipulated paper in such a way that it mimicked the brushstrokes of a painting. I also had a habit of incorporating oil pastel with my collages, until a peer asked me why I was covering up all my hard work by drawing on top of it. When I realized I didn’t have a good answer for her, I decided I should focus on making collages entirely from paper.

Ali by collage artist Megan Coyle
“Ali” Collage on paper. 18″x24″
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My senior thesis exhibition was my first cohesive body of work that was made entirely from paper. And since then, I’ve continued to hone and explore my craft. I have no idea how my art will evolve in the next ten years, and to me, that’s pretty exciting. I’m looking forward to my future artistic adventures.