Landscape Collages

Orange Plains by collage artist Megan Coyle
Megan Coyle. Orange Plains.

Landscapes are works of art that depict different views of natural land. This can include mountains, fields, and forests, just to name a few. Landscapes often include a body of water in their compositions. When we think of landscape, we think of the natural world.

Artists typically create landscapes of places they’ve visited like the countryside where they spent a summer vacation, or something more familiar like a rural area near one’s home. Sometimes artists make landscapes of places they’ve never seen before or areas they invented in their mind.

Megan Coyle’s landscapes were inspired from photographs she took while traveling abroad and exploring the countryside near major cities. The photos are used as a reference when she draws a sketch for the collage’s composition before layering down the paper. She also uses the photos as references when she starts selecting color for a landscape. Although the photos are used as a guide, Coyle doesn’t try to copy every element she sees in a photograph. She simply uses it to give her an idea of what colors and shadows she can use for the composition.

Coyle calls her collage technique “painting with paper.” She focuses on fragments of color and texture found in magazines. She cuts the paper into different shapes of color depending on the different shapes of shadows and highlights she sees when looking at landscapes. Once the shapes of paper are glued down, the overall collage looks a lot like an acrylic painting. By cutting the paper into shapes depending on color and texture, she pulls the paper away from the context of being associated with magazines.

Coyle has also created a series of small abstract collages, which have helped her explore how color can create a sense of depth and space. This series also helped her realize that landscapes can work well as abstract art. There are a lot of simple, geometric shapes that appear in nature. Each piece was made by tearing and layering magazine strips.

Take a look at her abstract work:

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