First Stage (Arranging):I have stacks of torn paper, sorted by colors, and tints within those colors. For each 8-10 stacks of different tints within each of the primary (red, yellow, blue), the secondary (orange, green, purple) and the neutrals (gray, brown, white). I randomly choose 5 or 6 stack of colors that appeal to me. I have no preconceived idea of how to arrange the papers. I go one piece of paper at a time, I usually grouping each color together, making 6 or 7 shapes. it usually looks something like the photo on the left: NOTHING! And each time I get to this stage I think the end result will be garbage. But in spite of the doubts, I keep going.
Second Stage (Gluing): As you can see from the final glued version, it changes quite a bit from the original rough groups of papers. It is more pleasing to my eye at this stage, but it still puzzles me. It could be SOMETHING, but I have no idea what it is. I usually sit with it in my studio for several days. The blue hanging shape looked foreboding. Then, I decided to turn it vertically...
There it was...ship, in a harbor? Really? How did that appear out of no where. Now for next stage.
Third Stage (Painting): So at this stage I start paiting into it, maybe smoothing out some areas, sharpening others. on some of the collages I paint very little into it. Others I have to really work at it. Actually I try not to think too much about it and I just move one little step at a time. I do not take photos during this stage because I am usually too involved and I simply forget, until it is actually finished.
Final Stage (Finished):
"Finding a Safe Harbor"
I made 30 collages between October 2020 and March 2021. Collage has always been, what I call, "My Comfort Art". I have always loved sorting colored papers, from the time I was little (my mother said). It is still shear pleasure for me. I like everything about it. I find great comfort in the process. It isn't fast or precise or even beautiful. It simply soothes me and heals me. These collages gave me a safe way to process, what I consider, too many feelings. It was as if I was taken on a six month journey that was surprising, delightful, sad, joyous and interesting.