“Collage is the assemblage of different forms creating a new whole.”
Collage has such an enchanting and vast history so I will only nibble at very limited edges in this post.
It started out as paper art in the Orient, way, way back in the day–the 12th century. Paper was held as sacred. Poems were embellished with flowers and other motifs from nature. Decorated text. Although it has evolved immensely, and is now a practice used by artists all over the world, it has held on to it’s roots. Collagists still decorate text and anything else that comes to mind. Not until the twentieth century was it considered a valid fine art method. Artists bringing painting, sculpture and assemblage to the collage party weren’t taken seriously at first but persistence has it’s rewards. The freedom of expression and spontaneity that collage offers revolutionized the way folks looks at art. Artists began collecting and using all kinds of stuff in their pieces. The limitlessness was tempting and many creatives gave in. There were of course many artists who were opposed to the abandonment of conformity but many were thrilled by it and their art displays a special passion. If I had lived back then I would have been one of the giddy ones. Anything can be used in a collage and that thought brings me sheer joy.
Fabric is my primary medium of choice. Occasionally adding found objects, paper, paint and anything else the piece calls for takes me on interesting adventures. One of the reasons for starting this blog is so that I will hopefully be forced into art discipline. Either I make stuff or my blog withers away. Blog withering is not acceptable. Experimentation and getting away from comfort zones leads to learning, growing and ultimately meeting goals. I intend to do much experimenting.
It’s kind of funny that I call this blog an art journal. I have been resisting actually creating from my journals. Drawing is not one of my talents but I have noticed that actually drawing more often seems to be aiding in that. In any case I have come up with a way to create samples displaying the elements and principles of design and at the same time using my slowly developing journaling skills.
I wrote the elements and principles on index cards, cut them out, put all of the words from each category in separate bags and randomly chose pairings. I chose an element first then a principle. For example, I chose line out of bag number one (elements). Then I chose movement from bag two (principles). I put those two together and will now make a sample textile adhering to both line and movement simutaneously. I had three principles left at the end of this exercise: proportion, balance and rhythm so I put the elements back in the bag and chose three, etc., etc. I quickly sketched some ideas in my journal that I will use to make the pieces. I didn’t want to get bogged down worrying about trying to draw perfectly so I had all of the sketches done in less than half an hour.
Here are the prompt combos:
line & movement
shape & variety
form & pattern
space & repetition & proportion
texture & unity & balance
color & emphasis & rhythm
And here are the pieces:
I like wonky. I guess it shows in the following misshapen felt samples.
I participated in my first library craft fair today. It was kind of cool. As I sat there nervously busying myself and hoping someone would like my stuff I began to wonder if I was too shy for this kind of thing. Maybe selling my wares online exclusively might be a better option. But as time passed, the kind smiles, gracious compliments and creative suggestions of the customers and the vendors helped me to reach a serene comfort level. When I first arrived my head was feeling slightly achy and my shoulders were tense and non-responsive to my positive self-talk. Thanks to the friendliness of the people I met there, those maladies subsided and the day turned out really nice. I intend to do more shows in the near future. I do have to get busy making more items to sell. My goods were a little sparse–too many of my fabric endeavours don’t make the cut and go straight to my sample pile. I am much too hard on myself when it comes to critiquing my work.
I sold some beautiful pieces and some that I didn’t think would sell actually sold. Surprises can be a good thing sometimes.
I have not forgotten my principles and elements examples. In fact, they are all already cut out and just need stitching. Deciding whether to hand or machine stitch them is keeping my procrastination skills in shape regarding this project. I chose to make the demos from felt because it is fun to cut and it is easy to illustrate shapes with it.