COLLAGE ~ this month we are going to dive into one of my favorite art processes, COLLAGE! Collage is an art technique where we combine painted papers, clippings, photos, recycled papers, or small objects onto a surface to create a one of a kind piece of artwork. We think about how we combine colors, textures, and materials to add visual appeal to our piece. We can work flat or we go work three-dimensionally depending on what we want to create. For me, it’s all about enjoying the PROCESS of selecting and combining materials.
Three prompts to getting you collaging this month:
“Explore Children’s Books featuring Collage”
“Card Making with Collage”
“Explore Children’s Books featuring Collage” – warm up to the idea of collaging by admiring collages in children’s books. Take some time in your classroom (or personal book collection) to gather up some children’s books that feature collage. Pour yourself a cup of hot tea and spend time noticing the layers, admiring the layout, and savoring the colors that the artist used to create the collages in their books. You might notice details that you never noticed before, despite the fact that you have read that book a gazillion times. My favorite collage artist is Eric Carle and revisiting his books is a favorite way for me to get inspired. Eric Carle’s process begins with making beautiful painted papers in different colors, adding details like patterns and polka dots, and scratching into the paint to give different textured effects. He would keep his different colors and textures in different bins and use those for creating is amazing works of art. (To learn more about his process you can find videos of him on YouTube creating his works of art -or- treat yourself and visit his museum in Massachusetts.)
I also adore Lois Ehlert, especially her nature collages and loose parts in her books Leaf Man and Snowballs! We will do “Land Art” or “Nature Collage” as one of our prompts this summer!
Collage Buffet” – Even before making a collage, take a bit of time to set up a “Collage Buffet” for yourself by putting a variety of complementary colors together with a variety of different materials. In each partition of the chip and dip container put a new material and keep filling up the container until you have a well rounded selection of materials. Admire your collection and think about creations that you might make. For me, I enjoy the gathering process and often do that part the day before collaging. Then on the day I am going to collage, I appreciate being able to sit down with a variety of materials to dive into my creativity.
“Card Making with Collage ” – receiving a handmade card is such a wonderful feeling. Think of someone you love that you know would appreciate a homemade card. Think about colors, images, or art materials that come to mind when you picture that person. Perhaps print out a special photo of you and that special person to add to the card. Sit down and create a card for them. Don’t allow perfection to stop you, and even if you think it looks too childlike, send or deliver the card to them. I promise…heartfelt cards are treasured for years to come. I have some ideas in a blog post about setting up a card making station that might inspire you to bring this into your classroom as well!
Last month we explored, “Art Prompt: Painted Papers”. Did you make a bunch of papers and wonder what to do with them all?! Here is my portable go to way to sort and store my stash of painted paper and scraps for collaging. It’s easy to keep organized and helps me to control how much paper that I keep.
(Full disclosure ~ hoarding painted papers is a weakness. I have two of these boxes ~ one at home and one at school because you never know when the urge to create with hit!)
I’d love to hear who your favorite collage artists are! I’d also love to see your process and collages this months too! Send me an email or tag me on social!
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