Tuesday, March 20, 2018

LAW 147: Taking a Turn to the Abstract

Hey hey hey! Happy Vernal Equinox. So far today it has rained, snowed, sleeted, rained, snowed.....
our boat, Tesla's Revenge is rocking back and forth in her slip in concert with a charming North Wind.


 Have i mentioned that i am throughly done with this winter? Magellan our first mate/cat is definitely as dis-amused as i am with the weather. The ice/snow build up on the docks gets in the way of his important off the boat cat stuff. SIGH.

3.16.18, 8 x 8.5" on book board

Okay enough about the weather and on to talking about art.


Several of my latest collages have gone in a decidedly non-figurative direction; which i have been enjoying immensely. There seems to me that working in an abstract style gives a greater degree of freedom; primarily for play. Abstraction Expressionism allows me the opportunity for experimentation within the context of the constraint of design and composition decision making.

3.17.18, 11 x 7" on book board

Collage presents the same challenges compositionally as any of the fluid media; there is always the necessity to balance color, shape, line, style of mark making: along with all of these comes the challenge of how to successfully merge different types of imagery.  By this i mean the basic differences you find texturally between the reproductions of various media; the surface texture of a fashion photograph or advertisement is significantly different than that of a hard edged, or impressionist painting.


I could go on; it should be apparent that each medium has its own particular look and one of the many challenges faced by a collage artist is how to make these disparate elements work together.

3.18.18, 8.5 x 11", on tag board

I was paid a huge compliment the other day; a fellow art maker on one of the many Facebook art groups i am part of praised the way i had successfully merged collage and paint work. Since the piece was 100% hand cut collage i was understandably flattered.

3.19.18, 8.5" 11"

I think that these new collages are successful. I try to always use more than one element from any image that i cut and use. This ensures that i am using the same "palette", which provides continuity and a sense of wholeness that i find is sometimes lacking in some collage work.

3.20.18, 13.5" dia.

What do yo think?

As always, more later

Thursday, March 15, 2018

LAW 146: More New Collages

One of the things that most rocks my boat(so to speak) about collage is the wonderful, serendipitous connections that magically occur.

On the Altar
 I almost always know where and what the images i use came from. That sort of insider information is important to me, and is one of the elements that predicate just which image i use in each collage. ON THE ALTAR, for example the background images include spy satellite imagery, the American flag flying on the moon and a atom bomb test photo. Combine with the profoundly disturbing, yet silly image of the little girl "wrapped" in the flag reading these images should give you a greater understanding of where i was going with this particular piece.

  I keep my collage materials in manila file folders. This allows me to keep the material in some sort of order and also  keep track of the last time i searched through a particular file as i date a file each time i search it. I do this because i find that material gets stale if i look at it too often; if i know what is in any particular group of images i find that i tend to not really look at them, not see what is there.

Does this.... make me look....

New material is the life blood of analog collage work. I think that this is particularly important if you work the way i do; which is in a very open ended, spontaneous connection making fashion. I almost never have any preconception of what i am going to create; instead preferring to see what offers itself.


It is getting more and more difficult to find the sorts of materials i like to work with. Second hand stores used to be great sources, and to be fair, some still are. Just not the ones that are close to me. So now whenever we travel a visit(s) to new, local thrift stores are always on the agenda.


We went to visit friends in Delaware last week and i managed to score s few pretty awesome children's books in one of the three stores we visited. I don't often find kids books that i like to use, as the imagery is usually to simple and cartoonish.

What Do You See When You Dream?

These books however proved to be little gems of slightly psychedelic pattern and color. They have provided much of the imagery i used in these last few collages.

Enjoy, and as always
More later

Friday, March 2, 2018

LAW 145: And They Called the Wind.....

Well today's creativity will be limited to the sorts of things that can be done without sharp, pointy, and cutty things. We are experiencing some of the effects stemming from whatever this northeaster is called. The wind has been rocking our boat strongly since about one this morning, and it is supposed to peak about three this afternoon. Oh joy!

I will take the opportunity given to update you all on what's happening in my studio here on Tesla's Revenge.

BUY, BUY,  2.23.18, 5.5 x &.25"
I have several projects i have been working on through out this winter, some of which are close to complete. I've been doing a lot of drawing and an abstract collaged altered book project as well.

DO NOT SPEAK,  2.25.18, 8.5.X 11"
Narrative/surreal collage is a special favorite of mine, and after the Parkland shooting i felt compelled to pick it back up again. These are unrelated(to each other) pieces in a variety of smaller sizes. I am not planning on showcasing them in book format.
YOU,  2.26.18, 8 x 8"

My intention is a daily practice; quick reactions to my emotional/mental state that require fluid i decision making. In other words, yet another attempt on my part to stop my obsessive search through every piece of collage material i have here on the boat for that "just right" element.

ANOTHER DIVIDED MIND, 2.27.18, 5.5 X 8"

I have to learn to trust my design choices, to not drag out the process until even i get tired of it.

So here are the first five; i did back myself into a corner with the 2.28.18 piece, as yet unfinished; i know what type of image i need to complete it, i just don't own it. So it is waiting.

NOT TONIGHT...,  3.1.18, 5.5 x 7.25"

There will be more later.