A student asked me for some tips on making a collage more cohesive. Maybe some of these tips will help you, too. Remember, these are just little tips and tricks that I've picked up along the way. Art is always about breaking the rules and making it work for you.
1. Limit your color palette.
- Pick three colors that you feel go well together and work from there.
- Think about the colors that you put together when you are getting dressed.
- Think about what colors you like the best.
- Look at the colors in a garden and how they work together.
- Push yourself to use colors that you don't normally love and use a lot.
- If there's a subtle color on the focal image, pull it out and use it around the page (vs. a lot of one color.)
- If it's black and white, see #1.
- The more you play and experiment with color, you will learn what works best for you. Think about keeping a color idea book and note color combinations.
- Take photos of color combinations that you love and replicate the combinations in your artwork.
- Limit your use of color. Don't go hog wild and use every color out there. See #1.
- Don't pick out papers solely because they're available but use ones that feel right and that set your heart all pitter patter.
- Don't go too crazy with pattern and texture. Limit yourself like you would with color.
- I am constantly rotating my supplies.
- Trade with friends. Tell friends and family what you are looking for in books and magazines.
- Work from a small bag or box instead of sorting through endless containers of collage images looking for the "perfect" thing.
- Limit yourself and the amount of supplies/materials that you are working from.
- Just because someone else loves it and uses it, doesn't mean that it's best for you.