A Piece of Cake

A Piece of Cake by collage artist Megan Coyle
“A Piece of Cake” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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I had a lot of fun working on this collage, and I’ve been getting a lot of joy from working on my latest series of minimalist desserts. I think I was previously focusing too much on animal portraits, and having more change in my routine helps get the creativity flowing. I’m planning to make a few more pieces for this series before changing gears again. It’s been fun trying to find new ways to sharpen my collage-making skills.

This piece of cake was pieced together rather smoothly. I think the most difficult part was trying to get the coloring for the background to work the way I wanted it to. Initially it was a more vibrant pink, although I wanted to find colors that were more subdued so that the cake itself would stand out more. You can also see that I focused more on finding solid colors from the magazine strips I layered, with only a few bits of texture.

You’re Pretty Sweet

You're Pretty Sweet ice cream cone by collage artist Megan Coyle
“You’re Pretty Sweet” Collage on paper. 7″x5″
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If you’ve followed my blog, you’ve probably noticed that the vast majority of my work focuses on wildlife. I’ve always had an affinity to animals, and I suppose that’s why time and time again, I’ve been drawn to making animal collages. However, lately I’ve wanted to change things up a bit. So right now I’m tackling a series of minimalist still life work, that explores various desserts.

At some point I’ll want to explore other aspects of still life compositions, but for now, I’m going to keep it sweet with my focus on sweets.

Donut Worry

Donut Worry by collage artist Megan Coyle
“Donut Worry” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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Over the past few months, I’ve made animal collage after animal collage. Animals have always been a favorite subject of mine, but I’m realizing that I need to change things up a bit more, and focus on other subjects that I’m not as comfortable with.

Still life has always been a subject that I haven’t enjoyed tackling all that much, and I’ve had a tendency of avoiding it or not trying to see how I can make it more interesting. As an artist, if I truly want to grow and develop my skills in new ways, it’s best to get out of my comfort zone so I can see what happens.

This piece is the start of a series of food collages. First, I’m focusing on desserts where I plan to use more of a minimalist composition. And of course, I had to include a pun in the title for this piece. After all, donut worry, be happy 🙂

Collie

Collie by collage artist Megan Coyle
“Collie” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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I haven’t explored collaging different dog breeds all that much, so the other day I figured I’d tackle a Collie portrait. I decided to use a simplified background with a warmer green, to create more of a contrast between the Collie and the background. I worked in bits of texture as well as solid colors, and I like how this dog seems to be smiling.

It’s always good to explore different ways to tackle a medium. Sometimes I like to work with more patterns and textures in the magazine strips I use, while other times I like to focus mainly on solid colors. Other times I have no idea what direction I’ll lean towards, and that element of surprise is all the more reason why I continue to make collages.

The Long Haired Doxie

The Long Haired Doxie by collage artist Megan Coyle
“The Long Haired Doxie” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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Long haired dachshunds are one of my favorite kind of dogs. This portrait was made as a gift for my boyfriend’s parents who got a long haired dachshund earlier this year. Their dachshund is a beautiful puppy who has a lot of energy, and I wanted to see how I could capture her likeness in collage form.

It might be fun to explore different dog breeds in the future. But I suppose at the moment, I’ve got my hands full trying to tackle a number of projects. That’s one of the many great aspects of being an artist – having more ideas than you know what to do with.

The Smiling Koala

The Smiling Koala by collage artist Megan Coyle
“The Smiling Koala” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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The other day, I wanted to get started on a new collage. I’ve been thinking that I really need to revisit still life, portraiture, or landscapes again since I’ve been focusing primarily on animals. But then I remembered how much fun it is to make animal collages, so I decided to tackle a koala collage again.

Working on this little guy wasn’t easy. I found myself realizing that koalas are pretty strange looking creatures – they look almost like mice with their rounded ears, and their noses are quite unique and unusual. I think I just haven’t really studied the features of a koala all that much, and realized that I was getting tripped up over the details in their quirky characteristics. Eventually I was able to layer the magazine strips in such a way that I was satisfied with the result. This piece is done…for now.

The Contemporary Unicorn

The Contemporary Unicorn by collage artist Megan Coyle
“The Contemporary Unicorn” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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I’ve always thought rhinos were fascinating animals. They look like aliens in many ways, and for that reason, I thought I’d focus on their peculiar appearance when naming this piece. And sometimes you just want to have fun when titling your work!

I also wanted to play around with layers, so this collage has more obvious layers than my usual work. Typically my collages are pretty flat, while this one is raised in different sections. I think I’ll try to focus more on layers and texture for my next few pieces.

The Colorful Parrot

The Colorful Parrot by collage artist Megan Coyle
“The Colorful Parrot” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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Lately I’ve been using more solid colors in my collages, so this time around, I wanted to mix in more textures. You can see that I’ve still used bits and pieces of solid colors, however the background consists of fragments of images of the outdoors, while the blue feathers and beak have a little more texture or patterns when compared to other areas of the collage. For the blue, I stumbled upon a blue tile-like pattern, and figured I’d see how it would look when I incorporated it into the piece. Sometimes I never know how a specific texture or pattern will work out until I layer it down on my artwork. I can always peel back layers if they don’t work out, so the process is always somewhat of a journey.

This piece was inspired by one of the many visits I’ve made to a zoo. Zoos are the easiest way for me to see exotic animals in-person, where I can take lots of pictures to later use as references for my artwork.

Slow and Steady

“Slow and Steady” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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I’m drawn to making animal collages because I love how much variety there is when it comes to animals. They come in so many shapes and sizes. Each species has its own expressive quality and personality with whatever shape and form they take.

As a child, I used to be a bit of a nature kid. I loved animals, loved reading about them, visiting them at the zoo, and buying knick-knacks and souvenirs of them. I used to spend hours playing outside, playing games with my imagination where there were always some sort of animals present. And I suppose today, the way I stay in touch with that part of childhood, is by continuing to create different images and depictions of animals in my artwork.

This turtle collage is another example of how I’m continuing to explore compositions of different animals, as I continue to play with texture and solid colors to construct each image. For the background, you can see that I used fragments of images that had clouds and terrain in them. For the turtle, I focused on various solid greens, and made sure the shell had fragments of texture from images of street signs and shrubbery. Overall, I had fun making this piece – at times it was a bit of a struggle, but I’m happy everything got pieced together in the end.

Golden Girl

Golden Girl by collage artist Megan Coyle
“Golden Girl” Collage on paper. 5″x7″
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I’ve always been a bit of a dog person. I grew up with a dog, and I always appreciate getting to visit my friends who own dogs. This is a piece inspired by one of those furry friends.

If you look closely at the Golden Retriever’s fur, you’ll notice that it looks like the texture of hair. That’s because I cut out fragments of images of blonde hair from models in the magazines I paged through, in order to construct this piece. The background is composed of fragments of landscape scenes, and the nose is made up of a few interesting textures I found.

Overall, I enjoyed making another collage of a grinning dog. Golden Retrievers are such fun dogs, and I’m especially a fan of adorable Golden Retriever puppies.