Saturday, December 3, 2016


I decided to take a break from hooked work over the holiday and pull out paper, paints and old magazines to try out some collage ideas.

When experimenting I tend to use lower cost supplies  High-end paints and brushes can be quite expensive so I save them for final projects.  Archival quality products should be used for works that will be shown, sold or expected to last over time.

I painted about two thirds of each 6" square with paint. Here I chose a mix of yellows and browns for one square and yellows and greens for the other. I have tons of magazines on hand dating back to 2010 so I had plenty to choose from.

 "From the Bay Window"  6"x6",  Lori LaBerge  2016

The work above has grays mixed with patches of bright color and it has a minimalistic look to it. Looking out our bay window I could see some trees still had the color of fall on them  I tore sections of color from the magazines rather than cut them as I liked the ragged look it left. It also leaves a touch of white on the edges of the paper as it tears.  

Here is a photo of what I was looking at as I worked:

From viewing the two above photos it is easy to see how a realistic scene can become abstracted.

"Fire in the Distance"  6" X 6",  Lori LaBerge  2016

A section of gray wood on the bottom left shows the deck while the purple curtain is placed in the foreground. Beyond the curtain are painted gold fields and collaged green hills leading to an expanse of gray sky with no mountains in sight. The upper right shows the fire raging in the mountains.

Recent fires in the area have left us spending quite a bit of time indoors as breathing was difficult when winds picked up. We could see smoke spread across the mountains, which were barely visible for days.

View of smoke in the mountains from the deck

It was interesting to see how a different medium affected my design aesthetic. I found myself using rougher edges and veering from my usual geometric style while working. It is a freeing medium with a lot of possibilities and I expect to continue working with it.

Art exercise--
Try a different medium.  Collage, paint, colored pencils, watercolor, clay, assemblage or other and see how it affects your style. Did you learn anything about yourself or the way you approach your artwork?

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