Grace Bauer selected one of my collages for the cover of her book of poems, Nowhere All At Once. From the book jacket:
Grace Bauer’s poems in Nowhere All At Once do everything all at once and quite successfully — mixing a tender sense of human and worldly presence with a lush instinct for sound, a compact flow of narrative, the perfect weight of wry humor, and an acutely attentive vigilance to all surroundings… Bauer’s balancing perspectives help “illuminate a greater regard” about everything mysterious and wondrous we are living.” Naomi Shihab Nye
As I began thinking about my final collage, I set out to do a couple of things: one was to use my good stuff (the ephemera I’m hesitant to use): Asian-themed tissue paper, dots with squiggles that look like cyborg bats from a children’s book, part of a vintage letter with sublime handwriting, and a postage stamp of a cat that looks like my beloved Tomtom. So here it is:
I didn’t notice until it was finished, scanned, and posted to my blog site that the stamp had the number 1000 printed on it. There’s often a bit synchronicity in collage, but this was borderline spooky.
As I neared the completion of the 1000 collages project, I was inspired by my new iPhone’s time-lapse movie app and made a video demonstrating the construction of two collages. It’s not going to make me a YouTube star, but looking at it now, I find how I was messing around with composition interesting. It’s not something I think about as I’m doing it; it’s more an intuitive process.
The book includes the basics of collage making: tools, materials, design basics, and techniques. But for me, the most useful and fun section of the book is Plowman’s “50 Creativity Exercises.” There were plenty of days over the course of three years when I didn’t feel like making a collage. On those days, there was always at least one exercise that could move me. I used one of my favorites, “Typography,” so often I dedicated one of my galleries (Text Effects) to the results. And even if I didn’t feel like reading, there was plenty of eye candy for inspiration.