Sunday, September 21, 2014

Collage art and inspirations

Last Sunday I took a collage class at Brooklyn Botanical Gardens. I can't remember the last time I made a collage although I vaguely remember using magazine cutouts and funny letters. The collage I made at BBG was different because the instructor prepared a lot of materials, including flowers and leaves picked from the garden. I also learned some cool tips that will come handy in future collage projects and perhaps even artist trading cards (ATC). 

To me, collage art is the ultimate "process-oriented" work. The end product looks cool but the process was the most interesting. I enjoy the creative process and journey that come with arranging of different items / colors / styles. It's both organized chaos and not. Although I did a bit of "planning" and "brainstorm" for my project, it came out a lot different than I had imagined. I also loved figuring out what to do with scraps that I took home with me. They ended up looking great as decor and gifts for friends. 

The collage

close up of the colorful rays radiating from the sun

close-up of a flower which had felt middle with cross-stitch of leaves/stems. Then then the flower petals were from paper with torn edges. the paper actually came from some old BBG calendars featuring autumn. 

Flower arrangement

A bunch of hydrangea arranged with some ivy, bamboo leaves, and maple leaf on top of some tree bark. I had one piece of bark that had a small opening so I was able to just stick the stems of leaves/flowers in there. Silver card stock is just from my stash of card stock around the apt.

Fun Decor

Scraps of felt, magazine clippings, card stock, tree bark, and hydrangea petals made for nice gifts for friends. The petals don't last long but still very pretty for the next few days.


  • watercolor paper - since it's stronger and able to hold all the various mixed media objects. for stronger hold/backing, cardboard is also recommended.
  • heavy gel (semi-gloss) GOLDEN gel medium - used for gluing different objects to the paper. for things like flowers, make sure to apply this to the bottom, then also apply a top coat.
  • wax paper - used as a mixing surface for acrylic paint (genius!)
  • natural objectives - flowers, leaves, stems, grass, bark
  • more traditional collage materials - magazines, calendars, card stock paper, felt
  • colors - acrylic paint, acrylic crayons, colored pencils, etc


  • background - color in with acrylic (spread with paper towel if you don't have a big paint brush), use a background image, layer different pics, etc
  • cutting out objects - straight scissor cuts, torn edges, patterned edges, using a stencil to cut out something, repeated shapes with different patterns/materials
  • drawing objects - regular drawing, stencils, carbon copy paper for repeated patterns (I loved this!), acrylic crayons 

Additional Resources: 

BBG Classes

No comments: