My Own Grunge Painted Collage (done on upholstery fabric sample)
This is a piece I worked on over several days, since last Saturday after our local book arts group meeting. Doing the grunge painting on fabric there must've really inspired me. (Scroll down to see a post and photos on that project). I really enjoyed doing the grunge painting, and love the results of it....and started thinking hmmmmm, can I produce similar results all by myself, as just one artist? Because the painting we did at the meeting involved the whole group, 13 artists.
At our meetings, oftentimes members will bring things to share with the group. At our last meeting, some people brought fabric remnants and wallpaper sample books to share. So, I brought home an upholstery fabric sample. It's dimensions are 17 x 12 inches, and it's quite thick and somewhat textured. I didn't care for the color, it was kind of an orange/tan, and I didn't know what I planned to do with it. Then it occurred to me I could just use it as a "practice" piece for grunge painting, that it would be perfect for that. And since I considered it a practice piece, and just for fun, I lost all fear of ruining it.
Now you have to know something about me. I am fearful about the "C" word. Doing "collage" scares me, for some strange or stupid reason. Anytime I think I'm doing a "collage", I get fearful and anxious and tense about my art and what I'm doing. Because I feel like I DON'T know what I'm doing. I start to over-think what I'm doing, or should be doing, and start second guessing myself, and get all concerned about placement and composition. I also get that way about layering. I have a really hard time with much layering at all, because I find it hard to paint over or cover up something I've already done, especially if I like the way it looks.
That being said, I really wanted to see if I could cut loose on this "practice" piece, and do a layered collage -- spontaneously, and with abandon. And see if, and to what degree, I could overcome my fear of collage and layering. That was my main goal with this piece, much more than being concerned with how it turned out.
I really, really got into working on this piece bigtime, and everytime I thought, okay it's done, more ideas would come to mind on what more I could do, what more I could add. Although I must say, in the beginning, I really didn't care about what I painted over or covered up. But the further along I got, the more attached I became to the piece, and the more concerned I was about what got covered up, and where to paint and stamp and glue down. I felt much more free about that in the beginning than later on. So in that sense, I didn't totally achieve my original goal, but only to a certain point.
So anyway, I think it's finally done. That is if I don't add something else. I couldn't scan the whole piece because of its size, so I had to do three scans. It would look better and more cohesive to see it as one piece, but this will have to do. The bird was one of the last things I added, and is embroidered on denim. I embroidered it on a pair of bell-bottom jeans in the 1970's!!! How "groovy" is that? So gee, it's over 30 years old! I cut it off the jeans many, many years ago, and held onto it all this time. I'm amazed I still have it, and more amazed that I actually found it and thought to use it on this piece. I think this is the exact piece it was meant to be on, and was waiting in a drawer for all these years. I was also able to use three of my caulk inchies on the right edge of the piece, and I added those last too.
So, that's my story and I'm sticking to it!!! In comparing this to the grunge painted fabrics posted below, I think the results I achieved are somewhat similar, but also different, because this turned into a collage, and I used other elements in addition to just paint, such as glued on crumpled tissue paper, yarn, cheesecloth, ric-rac, fabric, silk leaf, and of course the embroidered bird.