Thursday, March 28, 2013

How to Make a Collage Painting

upcycle old painting, recycle, art

I found these old paintings at consignment stores, salvation army, goodwill.  No one really wants a painting of someone they don't know so I got these pretty cheap.  It's better to get oil paintings that don't have too much texture, it makes it harder to cut up.
upcycle paintings

upcycle paintings

upcycle paintings, art

1  First come up with your design.  I was inspired by someone else's design and I knew it would work perfectly in our showhouse dining room design.

Design inspiration
 Decide on the size you want it to be and make sure you have a table large enough to work on it.  I stood the whole time to make this.  The size I choose was 36" x 48", quite large!

 Shop for supplies:
Canvas (stretched already at a hobby store, unless you know how to stretch your own)
Acrylic paints in the colors of your design/match old paintings
Cutting board (you can use wood or several layers of card board if you don't have a cutting mat)
Exacto knife with lots of blades ( you will have to change them often)
Ruler (metal for cutting)
Acrylic matte gel (pictured below) You don't have to get very much.  I used about 1 cup for my       painting.
Old Oil Paintings

 Draw your design on your canvas with a pencil

acrylic paint, design
Draw your design
 Start painting - it makes a nice background to your collage when your pieces don't quite match up.
Start Painting

Design is painted!

I painted the yellow stripes on the edge because I may not frame it or I may frame it with a gallery frame and I wanted them to continue.
  Paint the background. I went with white because I wanted it nice a crisp.
Painting is done,  now start the collage... 
 Start cutting your old paintings.  I did mine by color.  I cut the canvas off the stretchers from the front.  I didn't bother removing the staples and unwrapping the canvas.  I just cut it off.  Fast and easy.  I cut only a few strips at a time because I had to measure towards the end of each color to get the angles right.

Cut the canvas - you can cut it from the back or the front.
I numbered them after I placed them on the canvas to remember the order to glue.
  Start gluing.  Use the Acrylic matte gel - apply a light coat to the canvas and to the back of the strip.  Cover completely with gel.  Use your fingers to press it into place.  Don't worry about getting it all over the canvas or strips, it dries clear.  I could only apply 6-10 strips at a time and I would have to wash my hands so I wouldn't get dried glue on the painting as I smoothed over the strips.
Apply gel to canvas
Apply gel to the back of the canvas strip.  I used a piece of cardboard to do this.
 After gluing about 10 strips. you have to turn the painting over and put books on it so they won't curl up.  It has to dry about an 1 hour then repeat.  It won't be completely dry but enough to continue. Repeat until done.

I did one section at a time

I tried to leave something recognizable in each section from the original painting (notice the pink ear)

Making progress...I left the yellow stripes painted as a contrast to the collage.
 10  After I was done with the collage, I repainted the background and filled in gaps I didn't like and repainted the yellow stripes again.  Signed it and I was done!  You can go over the collage area with the gel if you want to give it a top coat.  They make gloss too.

It's tedious, but cathartic ~  happy collaging! Brandy