Saturday, March 13, 2010

Call to Collage

I've been feeling drawn to the idea of collaging on cards, cards that could be used for inspiration of all kinds.

I know that Kelli Russell Agodon uses these regularly (go here), as does Sandy Longhorn (read about the process here and here).

I have used collage occasionally, but it never ends up looking as beautiful as the cards pictured in those posts. I'm not good at composition yet.

I also have a colleague at work who collages so skillfully that you have to look really closely to see the seams. My collaging still looks like something a five year old would do. An awkward five year old.

Allow me to demonstrate:

For a few months in the early part of 1997, I was trying to decide what I really wanted out of life. I was thinking about what was lacking, what I wanted more of, what I wanted the future to be. I wasn't trying to create art, so much as I was trying to find a new way to my subconscious. The above collage tells me that I wanted more time outside.

I have always wrestled with insecurity, and I've always been drawn to sayings and slogans that tell me to walk away from insecurity. I almost bought a No Fear t-shirt, except it cost $18 in 1995, and that seemed exorbitant.

Here's the larger collage. Clearly I wanted rest (the woman in the bottom is in a hammock) and a slimmer body. At that time I had just lost 50 pounds, and I desperately wanted to keep it off. I was successful for a time, then I gained 30 pounds back, then a few years later, I lost that, and over the past few years, I've slowly gained it back. Sigh. Clearly some work to do in that area.

I think the above collage is most interesting, in terms of what I was thinking about the future, and where I am now. In many ways, I am that woman in the central image: department chair who hands out business cards while spending lots of time in an office. I see a longing for downtime and vacations (and I have learned to scuba dive, although I don't go often). The woman in jeans is Sandra Bullock, I think, and I like that casual style: jeans, boots, boxy jacket.

I wonder if my collage cards that I'm about to make will be different. I wonder if they'll inspire me in terms of my writing. Will I return to them in 13 years to be astonished at what I knew then, what I've managed to accomplish?

First, I need some magazines. I've let my subscriptions expire. But I have a plane trip coming up. I'll use it as an excuse to buy those lush magazines that I love, but that I never purchase because they seem extravagant in price and sparse in content. But if I'm buying for images, a new corner of the world opens up.

1 comment:

Sandy Longhorn said...

Thanks for the shout out!

Confession: all the seams are visible on my cards, but I've decided not to care. I've fallen in love with cutting out images and words. BTW: Junk mail can be great for this, too.

Can't wait to see what you do.