Chocolate Easter Bunny Foil Collage for Glue It Tuesday

Last week I saw Aimee from Artsyville’s announcement for a new feature on her blog, “Glue it Tuesday,” and I knew it was an activity I could really get into.

I’ve been interested in collage for years, but my early attempts were less than successful. I would carefully cut out people, flowers, and other objects from magazines, and then try to come up with arrangements that were clever, thoughtful, or good looking. Each attempt fell flat (to say the least), so eventually I stopped trying, and instead just enjoyed other collage artists’ works.

More recently I made my first positive strides with collage, pursuing a more abstract style. The best example of this is the collaged sketchbook I put together for the Sketchbook Project, Limited Edition. I worked intuitively, arranging shapes into balanced compositions that sometimes felt clever, thoughtful, and good looking!

I’m excited about this opportunity to explore the medium more and plan have my own Glue it Tuesdays here on my blog.

On Aimee’s intro post, I commented that I’ve been collecting thrift store books to collage with, and at first I thought I would use those for today’s collage. But then I ate part of a chocolate easter bunny. I noticed how pretty the little scraps of foil were, laying where they fell on the table, and I thought it would be fun to arrange them and glue them down.

easter bunny

So that’s what I did! I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to capture the shiny texture of the foil, but my scanner did a pretty good job.

I must say, the feeling of gluing down foil is very satisfying. If you’ve never done it, I highly recommend trying it out.

Next week I’ll probably work with paper of some sort. Although, I suppose I could buy a couple more chocolate easter bunnies in the name of art, right?

Be sure to visit Artsyville to see what Aimee created this week and to find links to other Glue it Tuesday creations.

making a mess

I had jury duty earlier this week, and the one silver lining to the whole process was that I could stop at the nearby art store and pick up some rice paper which has been on my list for a while now. In the aisle with the rice paper, and I met an older gentleman who inquired if I’d used rice paper before. I told him I hadn’t and asked if he had any advice. He gave me some suggestions and even pointed out the cheapest pack of paper as a good one to try out.

My hopes for the rice paper were that it would be absorbent and translucent like tissue paper, but would have a little more strength to it so it wouldn’t actually disintegrate and tear almost immediately, like I’ve experienced with tissue paper.

I started out by painting a few lines on the rice paper, and before I knew it, I’d filled in almost the entire sheet with watercolor. Well on my way to making a total mess, I finished the process by painting all the way to the edge of the paper.

making a mess

I was very pleased with the look of the sopping wet rice paper, but as I looked down on it, I suddenly realized what a mess I’d made! I had laid the sheet of paper directly on the table. I decided it wouldn’t be a great idea to let it dry there, so I carefully transferred the paper to some cardboard to dry.

Quite a bit of watercolor was left behind on the table, so it was a good thing that I’d moved the paper.

making a mess

The table was plastic, so the clean up of the wet paint was easy, but I was concerned that if left on the surface long enough, the pigment might actually stain the table. I’ll have to figure out a better surface to work on if I do this again.

Once the paper was dry, the color was a lot more subtle, as often happens with watercolor. Curious about how translucent the paper would be, I drew a couple of abstract patterns on some bristol with a pencil. After cutting out water drop shapes, I glued them to the bristol in two similar rain-inspired arrangements.

light rain

sudden shower

The rice paper is quite translucent, even with the added watercolor. I think the effect would be yet more obvious if the lines of the background were darker, maybe drawn with a heavy hand if using a pencil, or with pen.

Overall the rice paper was pretty strong and flexible when dry, and although fragile when wet, it’s a lot tougher than tissue paper. I have a few more experiments planned to see what rice paper can do, but so far so good.

lines & grids

I finally made up my mind about what theme to choose for the Sketchbook Project, and more importantly, I actually, officially signed up! For a long time I had my eye on the theme, “Make Mine a Double,” but could never quite take the plunge. Recently I checked out the website again, and that theme wasn’t available anymore. I was a little bummed, until I saw one that hadn’t been available when I was first checking it out. “Lines & Grids” is the theme I went for, and I’m really happy about it. In my opinion, it’s one of the most neutral themes I’ve seen, and I feel like there is so much that I can do with it.

After signing up, I kept coming up with all kinds of ideas for what I could do for the sketchbook, but I know that it’ll be a while before I get the actual sketchbook in the mail and can start drawing in it. Not able to contain myself any longer, I painted a plaid pattern on a small card with watercolor, and then cut out the shape of a heart.

I glued the cut out heart onto a plain sheet of paper, and continued the lines from the heart onto the clean background with pen.

too much plaid

I found it confusing and a little overwhelming when I was done. It seemed a little funny to me, but I cut it out again!

plaid heart

Ahhhh. Much better. The busy plaid needs the contrast of the plain background.

Not one to waste scraps, I also scanned in the background on its own, which also looks pretty good.

plaid background

Maybe something like this will end up in my Sketchbook Project sketchbook?

watercolor collage

I’ve been painting quite a bit with my new watercolors over the past few days. I’m still getting used to the new colors, but so far I’m loving them. I mentioned the test sheet I made when I first got all my new colors, but other than being very colorful, I didn’t find it all that useful.

watercolor dots

I didn’t know what all the colors would look like on the paper as I painted them. When I was done, I realized I would prefer to arrange them a little differently, so I decided not to use sheet for a reference.

Since the colors and textures looked so nice, I thought I might as well make something out of the sheet, so I cut the dots apart.

watercolor dots, cut up

I thought about arranging these cut up dots as part of a collage, but then I got the idea to cut out small rectangles of just the colors.

collage

It’s a simple collage, but I really love how colorful it is. I have enough little “chips” to make one more stacked tower, so this isn’t technically finished, but I wanted to share what I have so far. If inspiration strikes after the three towers are in place, maybe I’ll add some other drawn details.

After finishing the collage for the night, I didn’t want to set it aside where I might forget about it. I took down the painting that was hanging above my desk and affixed the collage, along with several other recent paintings, to the wall with some removable adhesive putty.

above my desk

I haven’t scanned any of these latest paintings because they are all just a bit too big for my scanner. I might be able to trim some of them down just a bit so that they’ll fit, so you may be seeing full size images of them soon.

I’d been meaning to figure out some way of having an “inspiration wall” and this seems to be a good solution. So far it’s been really nice to have some of my work actually up on the wall, rather than tucked away in a filing drawer.