Here is a sketchbook page I did in April for the Branching Out - Out on a Limb theme:
And here is what I have done to it:
Better? I don't know. But another step along the journey.
Here is a 10"x10" collage I did sometime last spring. I'd overworked it again and again, just having fun, and then finally put it away. This scan doesn't quite get the whole thing, but you get the idea. This is AFTER all the scrubbing and scraping (more on that below):
And here it is, in full, after I've gone back with paint and more collage:
Excavation Site 1
Now for the process. I began both of these make-overs by scrubbing the piece with rubbing alcohol, which dissolves acrylic paint to some extent. See my alcohol technique video. Interestingly, alcohol does not seem to dissolve gloss medium (but does dissolve matter medium), so once you scrub back the layers of paint and find some stuff you want to keep, you can coat it with gloss medium before proceeding.
Another technique I use for the "collage excavation" is sanding with ordinary sand paper. I also use a razor blade to scrape the paint.
To add paint back to the piece I use a lot of my brayer technique. I love the brayer, and use it for applying paint, but also for lifting paint. See the Brayer Technique Video on my blog.
I hope you are having as much fun with this theme as I am!