The other week, Miss Smeaden from Cornwall, UK emailed me pictures of her students’ artwork. She teaches a Year 5 class, and they worked on their own colorful animal collages. I had a lot of fun reviewing the class’s artwork and seeing their collage display (pictured above).
It always brightens my day when I get emails from classrooms studying my art and making their own collages. The class did a lovely job of using bright, solid colors and incorporating various patterns and textures from magazine cutouts.
I also really enjoyed how expressive these creations were and seeing how many different animal species the class used for their compositions.
It was fun seeing bits of text from the magazines also incorporated into some of the pieces.
Collage can be a tricky medium when you’re new to it, and these students did a wonderful job of embracing the medium.
I hope these students continue to explore making collages, and I hope they had a fantastic time making these beautiful works of art!
The other day I decided to work on a capybara collage, inspired by a trending song that’s been going around online. I never realized how tricky it is to make a capybara portrait. At times, it felt like this collage just looked like a blob, so I had to make an effort to focus on the texture of the capybara’s fur as well as the shadows and highlights on it’s face and body. At first the water consisted of a number of fragments of photographs of water from magazines, but they didn’t look very cohesive, so I ended up collaging the texture of water from only a couple of similar images. Overall, this was a fun yet challenging animal portrait, and quite a bit different than the types of animals I’ve collaged in the past.
The name for this collage was inspired by one of my viewers during one of the live sessions I had while piecing together this penguin the other day. The viewer said that the penguin looked like a distinguished gentleman, and I couldn’t help but laugh – thus I had to include the word “distinguished” in the title.
I’ve only completed a few penguin collages over the years, and it has been a while since the last time I completed one, so I was long overdue with making another one. Lately I’ve been on a kick with making these animal portraits. A few of my followers mentioned the other day that they didn’t realize that I did other compositions besides animal pieces, and that’s making me realize that I should probably tackle people portraits once more. They may take longer to complete, but it would be good to get back into it again.
It’s a new year, and I’ve decided to do my best to maintain more of a balance in my life. This time last year, I had already completed several new works of art, and then felt somewhat burnt out the rest of the year. So this year, I’m going to aim to complete about one new work of art every month so I can ensure that I’m pacing myself. And this is the collage I tackled for this month.
I’ve only ever created one other alligator collage, and it was a commission that was completed years ago. It’s fun to see how my style has changed over the years, while certain elements have remained the same. The challenge with this new alligator collage, was working on the scaly texture, as well as the teeth since this piece was one of my smaller sizes. Overall, I was pleased with the finished product and enjoyed tackling a new challenge.
I had a lot of fun working on this commission the other day – it was my first time working on a custom bird pet portrait. Generally I get requests for dog portraits, and every once in a while, a cat portrait, but I hadn’t worked on a pet conure portrait before. The client supplied several reference photos and let me know which photo should be the main reference. This portrait was made as a Christmas gift for the daughter of my client, who actually studied my art in school.
The detailing for this piece was pretty intricate since I had to cut some extremely small pieces of paper. Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed working on incorporating a lot of fragments of texture as well as solid color into this piece. I live streamed most of my process, and it was fun chatting with my followers as I worked on the details.
It’s been a while since I’ve worked on a panda portrait, so I decided to tackle this collage while running my live streaming sessions. With this particular piece, I wanted to play around with using warm and cool colors for the shadows. I think generally I would have approached this collage by using different shades of gray for the shadowing, so it was fun to change things up a bit with this one.
Since this piece is only 5″x7″, it was especially challenging when it came to working on the detailing of the panda’s face. The eyes, nose, and mouth, all required cutting out very tiny magazine cutouts. Overall, this collage was a bit of a challenge to work on, most likely because the sketch was a little rough and thus I didn’t plan out the overall composition very well. However, eventually I got to a place where I could call the collage finished. It’s nice to work on a composition where it is a bit of a struggle, since it helps me appreciate it more when a collage flows together easily.
It’s been a while since I’ve made something new – life has been pretty busy these days. A couple of months ago I moved to Manhattan, and moving can be a bit hectic. Aside from that, I’ve been getting organized with my life and exploring other ways to be creative. I’ve been making these collages for years, and although I enjoy the visual art process, sometimes it’s helpful to take breaks from my art so I can revisit the medium again later with a renewed appreciation for it.
So after a couple months away from art-making, I decided to get back into the groove of things by working on this tiger portrait. I had a lot of fun working on this, and I just about live streamed the entire process. Lately that’s been my go-to when I comes to making art. It’s fun chatting to viewers as I’m working on a work in progress.
I’ve made quite a few dachshund collages over the years, and the other day I wanted to work on making another long haired dachshund portrait. I also decided to film the process. The interesting thing about filming my collage process, is that sometimes I feel a little nervous about filming my work. I never know how things will turn out and if I’ll be pleased with the finished collage. However with this piece, I was happy with the results.
This past weekend I worked on a couple of new collages where I filmed the process so I could put together more time lapse videos. I’ve always liked owls, so I decided to make another Barn Owl collage. I also couldn’t help myself with using a pun for the name of this piece 🙂
Filming my process has helped me set more of a schedule for working on my artwork. I like how I can share how I’ve tackled various subjects with my technique. I’m thinking that up next, I’ll make a few still life pieces, since I’ve worked on so many animal portraits.
Sometimes working on a work of art can be a bit of a struggle. For instance, this piece started out in one direction, but after completing the initial sketch, I ended up erasing it entirely and sketching a different version of the same subject. Then when it came to the layers of paper, it took a bit of reworking the details to get things looking the way I wanted them to.
I don’t know if I’m finished with this piece, but I’m done for now. The wonderful thing about art is that you can always revisit older pieces and rework them when you have a fresh pair of eyes.
I made a time lapse of this piece too that you can view below: