Saturday, February 4, 2012

Collaging close-up imagery into a composition

Leslie here.  Last month I created several collaged substrates with some travel ephemera from a trip to France.  I love the idea of using an element from one of my memories and juxtaposing it with a whole object.  In this case, I stenciled an element that strongly resembled the South Rose Window of the Notre Dame Cathedral, in Paris, with the iconic shape of the Eiffel Tower.

I stenciled the image of the Rose Window over the collage, which was created from boarding passes, museum tickets, etc., from the trip.  I used a permanent marker to accentuate one side of the image so it would stand out a bit more on the surface.

After stenciling and outlining, I wrote some memories over the surface.

Next, I drew a rough sketch of the Eiffel Tower, outlined it in black marker, and using a lightbox, I traced the shape onto a world map.  I positioned my drawing so that the country of France would be included in the cut-out of the Eiffel tower.
Using an exacto knife and a ruler I carefully cut both the negative and the positive shapes from the map.

here my drawing is positioned under the map on a light box.

I protect my fingers by keeping the blade of my Exacto knife embedded in a wine bottle cork!
It works so much better than the plastic cover, which always seems to fall off mine.

Using a palette knife I spread Yes! glue under the cut-out and positioned it on my collage.

I hit the left edges of my tower cut-out with the black marker to give it a bit of contrast.

I like where this is going!  
Once the glue dries I plan to use a colored Sakura pen and write over the tower cut-out.
Using a Pitt pen to heighten portions of the map and a blue Sakura pen to write script over both the tinted 
portion of the map, as well as along the left outer edges of the cut-out, the tower becomes a bit more prominent in the overall collage.  


  1. Oooo I've been wanting a light box.Looks like you were having so much fun.Denise

  2. Leslie, this is beautiful. I love all the layers and texture you've created.

  3. This has been an excellent tutorial. Thank you!

  4. A light box is a handy thing to have in the studio for all sorts of things. Tape your items to a window and use daylight as a good substitute!

  5. Very cool.. Is that a home made stencil? Looks like an Artist Cellar stencil :)

  6. Thanks Leslie. You never fail to inspire me.

  7. love this and thanks for the tip about the wine cork!

  8. Oh yes! How could I forget to mention that this is an Artist Cellar stencil?!

  9. Great instructions. All of the photos were wonderful. It was possible to see it step by step.

  10. Great instructions. All of the photos were wonderful. It was possible to see it step by step.

  11. Hi, Leslie: How did you do the stenciling background part? This is great!!!


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