Collage is the noble conquest of the irrational, the coupling of two realities, irreconcilable in appearance, upon a plane which apparently does not suit them – Max Ernest
This year, my In-Depth project hasn’t exactly been a smooth journey. But, through my hardships, I became much more resourceful and experienced. Currently, as the In-Depth projects draw to a close, I’m preparing my final presentation and finalizing my works. Though I lost about half of my entire In-Depth project and I regret my loss, I’m definitely proud of what I was able to accomplish in the amount of time I had. This month, instead of mimicking the works of my mentor and other accomplished collage artists, I’m starting to develop my own designs and bring them to life. As of right now, I’m sitting on top of 14 complete collages and 3 pieces in progress. (They aren’t attached here because I will be exhibiting them in my final product.)
My mentor, Sean, is such a great influence on both my character and my work. I benefited both mentally and creatively through our weekly meetings. As Sean resides in the Philippines, we are both very supportive and aware of each other’s schedules. Furthermore, it’s an amazing experience to have someone to talk through your ideas and plans with. In addition to getting help from Sean, I have been researching on my own. However, most of the online courses for collage art is either too limiting and focused on magazine and paint collage or way too expensive. Therefore, I’m studying and learning from YouTube videos that demonstrate how artists create their collages and develop their personal styles, and how they utilize Photoshop to achieve their ideals.
This month, I encountered the same two challenges that troubled me last month: Photoshop and materials. Though I now have more experience with Photoshop, I’m still clueless about a number of tools. I’m especially confused by the gradient and hue/saturation tools, resulting in difficulties when I try to match the layers of my collage. After watching YouTube videos and consulting my mentor, I still have no idea how to operate some aspects of Photoshop. But, I’m definitely aiming to gain a better grasp on the functions of Photoshop in the next few weeks. Moreover, I had a difficult time searching for materials as most of my works are recreations of visuals direct from my mind. Half of my time is spent seeking and browsing for the right images. I recognize that I need to adjust my approach toward collaging and as Sean advised, “let the art direct you”.
As the possibility of returning to normality is little to none existent and In-Depth Night won’t be possible, I’m exploring options to present my work online. Inspired by the speed art videos I watched, I decided to make a two-part presentation to demonstrate my learning. In the first part, I’ll be screen recording how I create and construct a collage. I plan to speed up the video and deliver an appealing video presentation with text to guide my viewers. For the second part of my presentation, I’ll be composing a collection of my best works and explaining how they were formed. I’m currently debating between two formats to display my collections with: Sway and Powerpoint. They are both excellent applications that include text and images, and more interactions are involved than a simple video. I’m looking forward to testing both services and determining which of the two fits my needs the best.
In this difficult and challenging time, collaging and the creative process serves as a healthy creative outlet for my negative emotions, supporting my mental health. Through collaging, I’m organizing my most peculiar and eccentric thoughts and turning them into reality. It’s separating my ordinary reality and my bizarre dreams.