Megan Coyle Collage Technique

A Potomac River Afternoon by collage artist Megan Coyle
Megan Coyle. A Potomac River Afternoon.

When you first saw Coyle’s artwork, what did you think it was made of? Did you think they were paintings? Even though Megan Coyle’s artwork looks like painting, it’s actually collage art. Each work of art is made entirely from magazine pages. She takes magazine strips and glues them down in such a way that they look a lot like the brushstrokes in a painting.

Coyle studied painting in school. Take a look at the brushstrokes she used in her paintings. Now take a look at one of her collages. Her collages look similar to her paintings. How does she do that?

Coney Island by collage artist Megan Coyle
Megan Coyle. Coney Island.

Each collage starts with a rough drawing so Coyle knows exactly what she wants to collage. Then she pages through magazines, looking for different colors. She cuts out different shapes of color with a pair of scissors and glues down the pieces on top of the drawing. She continues to layer and glue down pieces of paper until the collage is complete. You’ll notice that a lot of the color she used for the sky and boardwalk in “Coney Island” was cut into rectangular strips. The shrubs in the background were made with different pieces of green paper. What shapes do you see?

She often uses small and large pieces of paper to create each collage. Smaller pieces of color help create detail in a collage. Take a look at the detail images of “Coney Island.” What do you see when you look closely at the collage? (Click on one of the images below to view a larger image)

How are Coyle’s collages different than a painting? Click to find out how.

What’s different about the paper she uses? Click to find out.

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Detail image of a landscape painting by Megan Coyle