Saturday, February 5, 2011

Collaging Layers of ephemera, paint, and chalk

Leslie here.  Occasionally, I love to pull out some of the ephemera I collect from my travels, mail, etc., and use bits and pieces to create a base layer collage upon which I layer paint, charcoal, and chalk.
This is a great jumping-off point for a journal page because it can make a statement on its own or serve as the basis for additional layers.  Sometimes, a collage layer is simply applied to add texture to the page.
What a jumble of stuff!
I'm using segments from mass-mailings, rental car maps, advertisements, bits of cut fabric,
clothing tags, you name it....
cut and torn pieces of cloth and papers are "glued" onto watercolor papers with medium-body gel medium.  I have 4 pages going at once.
a detail of one of my collages:  I forgot to mention my boarding pass and 
an old tram ticket from a trip to Amsterdam...

the collages were layered with gesso and writing

The blue circles were printed with a thermofax screen, and now I
am layering some matte medium for the next step....

these are elements cut from a piece of mulberry paper,
positioned on the matte medium, and additional matte medium is painted over the paper.

Next, I am drawing squares on the surface using chalk
I pulled matte medium over the chalk, which stabilizes it on the surface
eh, the pink chalk doesn't really register on the surface.
Since I am playing with circle/square as the theme for this page,
I want a more significant mark.... I will try blue chalk
I like this better.
Now, I must stabilize the chalk with matte medium.
Incidentally, the blue chalk was applied onto a dry surface.
I like the chalk because it "skips" over the uneven surface and I like that effect.
After multiple layers, I like what I have here.
I like that the pink and blue chalk squares reference the squarish pieces of collaged ephemera, 
and the white circles of the paper respond to the larger, printed blue circles below them.
Here is the same collage before all that "other stuff" happened!

Have fun making collages.  I look forward to seeing them!


  1. Really cool. Thanks for sharing your process. I need to start playing more.

  2. Gorgeous and inspiring! Thanks, Leslie.

  3. Thank you so much for showing the process and telling about the medium, gesso, etc which I am still learning more about and experimenting with. This is so helpful and crazy-inspiring. Thank you! ~Kathy

  4. love this....thanks for the pictorial process...looks so relaxing and stress free....i think i need this right now!!!!!

  5. Thank you Leslie ! Very inspiring and answered my questions about using gel mediums on the collage I am playing with !!!

  6. Very cool. I love seeing your process and all of your "stuff" on the table. Is there any other way to work? Your journal is inspirational. I think I will dig out some of my "stuff" and play with it on paper!

  7. Looking back at this I'm wondering: how did the pink and yellow get there? Is that paint or more collage? Love the process sequence!

  8. I "snuck" a couple of additional layers in there. With all these photos, I didn't want to bore people out of their minds! I added a couple of papers that had previously been printed with thermofax imagery prior to screening the blue circles, etc..
    I apologize for leaving out a couple of layers.

  9. Oh very nice. It's so much fun to see the transformation. Thanks Leslie!


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