Creating a Collage, Part One

Last week I started a collage with three canvases 32″ x 44″ each. After applying two base coats of gesso, I brushed on a thin coat of base color using Golden Fluid Acrylic. It is a thin paint with lots of pigment so it doesn’t take very much to cover. I use it like watercolor, allowing the white of the canvas to show through.



As the paint dried, I selected papers to use based on texture. Some of these papers are handmade in Japan, others I made with tissue paper and paint. Here is a post about how I do that.


Ready…set…go! The little cups are holding diluted colors to make the spruce trees using Jenkins green, quinacridone burnt orange, primary cyan and anthraquinone blue.


First I spray the pieces of paper which are lying on a trash bag. I allow the paint to blend by itself. If the paint isn’t blending, I spray it with more water. The paint on the paper in the lower right will be sprayed and it will flow and all the fibers will be covered.


After pouring the paint, I dabbed at some with paper towels to make distant spruce trees.


This Japanese paper is made by water dripping on it to make the holes. I tore it into pieces, then used yellow and quinacridone gold to add variety and make it look like tree shapes.


The perfect color of autumn birch leaves!


I tear most of the paper used in the collage because I don’t want hard edges. The leaves need to have an edge on the river bank though, so I use this ruler with a deckled edge to give the paper a soft, uncut edge.


This paper is perfect for birch trunks. I used a rotary cutter to make this tree trunk. This is tissue paper with paint.

I’ll begin sticking the paper temporarily on the surface next. That gives me a feel for color of the water and sand and I’ll make adjustments before gluing the paper down permanently.

Thanks to Daniel Smith for excellent service and products.

10 thoughts on “Creating a Collage, Part One

  1. Beautiful Suzie…I’m so glad I got to see your workshop…makes me want to go play with my paper 🙂

  2. Wow Suzie! Collage.. that was a surprise for me! I’m so glad you are doing it in collage. Wonderful! You may give me a few new ideas 🙂

  3. I am struggling to paint birch trees and you are making them out of tissue paper… I amm really looking forward to your project updates

  4. Thank you; you are such an inspiration! I can’t wait to see the finished collage.

  5. Pingback: Creating A Collage, Part 2 | Creating in Alaska

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