Photo Collage Art

Studio 5 New Contributor Finalist Loralee Nicolay shares easy steps to creating your own piece of collage art, using snapshots of your favorite people.

Materials Needed:

• Gallery-wrapped canvas or art-board in desired size. (I like to    use square canvas, but any dimensions will work)
• Artists’ Acrylic Medium or Mod-Podge
• Scissors and/or X-acto knife
• Soft bristle or sponge brush
• Cut-outs from magazines, scrapbook papers, old books, etc.
• Photographs of family, friends, etc.
• 3-D items that may or may not relate to your theme (i.e.: shells,    keys, buttons, jewelry, leaves).

Step 1
Photocopy (and enlarge if you wish) your favorite snap-shots of the person or people for whom you are making the portrait. Spontaneous and candid shots are great for this project, and you can use color or black and white copies.

Step 2
Gather images and words from magazines, old books, sheet music, etc. Scrapbook papers can also be used. Pick images and colors that appeal to you, or promote a theme you are creating. Mix large and small items. Try to avoid having all your images the same size. It is best to have some areas of your collage with less detail, mixed with areas of greater detail and texture.

Step 3
Play with the arrangement of your images before you begin gluing them to the canvas. This is a creative process and your collage will turn out best when you’ve tried out many possibilities.

• Overlap small images on large images
• Push items to the edge of your canvas
• Use the “Rule of Thirds”; the best place for a focal point is not in    the center, but in the “thirds” of your canvas.
• Don’t forget to add words or phrases for a whimsical touch!

Step 4
Using the artists’ acrylic medium or Mod-Podge, thoroughly coat the back of each piece with a brush and glue them to your canvas. Start with the large items first. Work out any air bubbles in the paper by brushing the top.

Step 5
When you have glued all your images to the canvas, coat the entire top of your collage with a layer of acrylic medium or Mod-Podge to create a seal. Allow to dry.

Step 6
For added interest and a touch of dimension, glue something three dimensional to your collage using hot glue or another appropriate material. Have fun with it; this can be anything from old costume jewelry, to objects found in nature, to basic junk found around the house!

For more information about my art and other fun art and design ideas, check out my blog:

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