These small-format collages are what I start with, when I go to my studio. They go together quickly, with whatever materials I have on hand, combined with what I have collected that day, on supports cut from old drawings or paintings on heavy paper. They are playful and gestural; they lead me into their visual world. It’s a good way to get myself into the “studio state-of-mind.”
For many years, I put together one collage each day. Then, my life grew hectic, and I went weeks without ever stepping into the studio. When I managed the time, I often moved right into work mode: what absolutely needs to be done, in this small amount of time that I have for art-making? Often, I was frustrated that the inspiration was not there. In my desperate attempt to make good use of stolen moments, I forgot about the importance of play.
Now, with the studio becoming more of a regular habit again, I have re-introduced the practice of making a collage upon getting started in the studio. I think of them like visual diary pieces, the shapes and colors reflective of my mood on any given day. They frame up nicely, with three inches of mat board all around, in 14″ x 14″ frames. I imagine them hung in four or five rows and seven columns, like the layout of the days on calendar pages. But long before they are matted and framed for display, they remind me of why I go into the studio in the first place: the fun of putting things together!