Johnny Rose

Johnny Rose collage by Megan Coyle
Johnny Rose collage by Megan Coyle
“Johnny Rose,” Collage on paper, 7″x5″
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This is the third collage I’ve completed thus far for my Schitt’s Creek portrait series. I’m beginning to get a little more comfortable with portraiture again, but it will probably take several more portraits before I feel more at home with it. I’m planning to tackle at least three more collages for this series before I turn to a different character series.

Getting back into portraiture after spending years away from it has definitely been a challenge, but I’m liking the routine I’ve gotten into. As an artist, I think it’s important to find different ways to challenge yourself, let that be via unfamiliar mediums or subject matter. I think after I complete several new portraits, I’ll start to revisit still life and landscape pieces.

Alexis Rose

Alexis Rose collage by Megan Coyle
Alexis Rose by collage artist Megan Coyle
“Alexis Rose,” Collage on paper, 7″x5″
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I haven’t been as active with making new art these days, but I am making an effort to make at least one new collage every month. What’s been going on? Well, I’ve picked up a couple of other time-consuming hobbies (like training for half marathons), which has made it a little more difficult to be as productive.

However, I’m currently focusing on a Schitt’s Creek portrait series, and this Alexis Rose portrait is the second one I’ve completed thus far. I haven’t done too many portraits these days, so I’m having fun with tackling a subject matter that’s pretty challenging for me at the moment. Hopefully the more I make these, the easier it will get. I’ve been pretty rusty, but it feels good every time I complete a new one.

David Rose

David Rose is a collage made entirely from magazine cutouts by Megan Coyle
David Rose collage by Megan Coyle
“David Rose,” Collage on paper, 7″x5″
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Life has been hectic lately – I’ve shifted my focus on some of my other interests, so I haven’t been as active with my art-making. I picked up running recently, and have spent a great deal of time training for upcoming races.

However, I’m still planning to at least make one new collage per month this year. I completed this piece just the other night. It’s inspired by the show Schitt’s Creek, and I’m hoping to do more portraits of other characters soon. I started off with a portrait of David since he’s one of my favorite’s on the show. This portrait was definitely a bit of a struggle, and if you were to see it in-person, you’d notice that some sections have been built up with more layers than others. That’s a common occurrence when I’m struggling with a particular subject matter.

The tricky thing about making a portrait of a well known figure, is that it’s very easy to screw up the details and have the portrait not actually look like the person it’s supposed to be. I’m hoping that by picking up portraiture again, this process can only get easier over time.

Lizzo

Lizzo by collage artist Megan Coyle
“Lizzo.” Collage on paper. 7″x5″
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I’ve taken a bit of a break from collage-making, but now I’m back at it. At the beginning of the year, I completed nearly twenty collages within a short period of time. I was live streaming my process almost every night, and I burned myself out a bit. After taking some time off to focus on my creative writing and other creative endeavors, I’ve been well-rested and ready to return to collage.

This is a portrait that I initially started at the beginning of the year, but finally tackled completing it just the other day. Portraiture is a tricky subject to work with. It’s often difficult to get the likeness down of the figure, especially if it’s a well-known or famous figure. I used to only enjoy making portraits, but years ago I made too many portraits within a short period of time, and since then, I’ve distanced myself from portraiture. Although lately, I’ve been itching to challenge myself again. So here’s yet another portrait that I was able to complete recently. I definitely feel rusty, but it felt good to stretch those artistic muscles that have been out of shape for a while.

Taylor Swift

“Taylor Swift” Collage on paper. 7″x5″
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The other day I completed a portrait of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, which inspired me to start working on portraits again. Previously, I hadn’t focused much on portraits. My first few solo shows consisted of bodies of work that were entirely made up of portraiture/figurative pieces, and I burned myself out on that subject matter. I haven’t revisited portraiture much other than when I’m commissioned to make a portrait for a client, and I thought it would be great to delve back into the subject matter that I haven’t really focused on in years.

This portrait of “Taylor Swift” took more time than my pieces generally take, since I’m rusty with the human form and I wanted to get her likeness down properly. I’m excited to continue working on portraits and see how much I can improve with the process.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg
“Ruth Bader Ginsburg” Collage on paper. 7″x5″
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When Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away the other day, I was inspired to work on a portrait to honor her memory. I haven’t tackled a portrait in nearly three years, so I felt rusty when I started this one. The tricky/intimidating thing about portraiture is getting the likeness of a person down properly. Sometimes I’ve struggled with it quite a bit, and this piece was no exception. It took me about a week to work on layering everything until I felt it was complete.

I think this portrait has inspired me to work on portraiture once again. Since it takes me longer to make these since I am a little rusty, I don’t plan to film any time lapse videos for my next few pieces. Once I’m able to speed up the process, I’ll consider filming my process again.

Acrylic Self Portrait Painting from High School

Before I was immersed in studying painting in college, I made quite a few acrylic paintings in high school. This piece was part of a series I made where I played around with using color to convey different moods. As you can see here, I used cool colors to convey a somber tone. I also painted the background a dark color that I lightened up a bit by painting a thin layer of white paint over it.

Oil Pastel Self Portrait Drawing from College

I made this oil pastel self portrait drawing during my sophomore year of college. At that time, I was taking quite a few studio art classes. It’s also around the time I decided that I was going to pick up art as a double major, instead of just minoring in it.

I really enjoyed working on the face and eyes for this piece, although the hand was a bit of a struggle. I thought it was fitting to share a piece from my past, to illustrate how much your work can change and develop over time. Your work won’t always be “perfect” or turn out the way you’d like it to, but each new work of art you make will help you grow a little more as an artist.

Heels Collage

Heels by collage artist Megan Coyle

Although I started making collages back when I was in high school, I didn’t start getting serious about the medium until I was in college. “Heels” is a collage that I made in my free time outside of the painting classes I had to take as a painting major.

For this piece, I played around with using different patterns and textures, while still using some solid bits of color for the floor and wall in the background. Working on collages like this one is exactly what kept me interested in pursuing collage as a medium for my artwork.

Mark and Sophie

Mark and Sophie by collage artist Megan Coyle
“Mark and Sophie” Collage on paper. 9″x12″
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“Mark and Sophie” is a portrait that I was commissioned to make for the wife of a former boss of mine – she wanted to give it to her husband for their anniversary.

It’s been a while since I’ve made a portrait collage, so this piece was definitely a bit of a struggle for me. Usually my collages are relatively flat when you look at the surface – I don’t usually use that many layers. However, for this piece, there are definitely sections where I built up the layers more so than others.

Here’s the sketch that this piece started off with:

Mark and Sophie sketch by Megan Coyle

You can see that it looks a lot different than the final piece. Sometimes my sketches don’t exactly look the way┬áI want the final product to look, but they do give me an idea of how to block out the entire composition.

Anyway, although this piece was a struggle, eventually all the pieces fell into place. Just goes to show that if you keep at it with something, eventually you can accomplish your goal.