Thursday, November 5, 2009

Ocean Beach Travel Collage

Recently I was fortunate enough to spend 9 days at Ocean Beach, outside of San Diego. Ocean Beach is an ‘old school’ beach town – low-scale cottage architecture, surfing, heaps of restaurants and some very interesting and comfortable bars as well. We enjoyed going to the beach every day, catching the glorious sunset every evening and just wandering about the town. Ocean Beach also is know for it’s very special dog beach – a section of beach where dogs can run free. We enjoyed touching into unbridled dog joy watching them run and play with each other, with mad dashes into the ocean as well.

Whenever I travel I like to do collage work. I have a little ‘collage kit’ that I take with me which includes glue sticks, colored pencils, airplane-permitted round tip scissors, a popsicle stick for burnishing the images, stick-on letters and a stencil for letters.

I then buy an inexpensive journal for each trip.

As I travel, the hunt begins. I collect ‘memorabilia’ of the place - business cards, menus, bar coasters, printed restaurant napkins, maps, advertisements about from guide books and newspapers and so on. I use bits and pieces from newspapers, magazines and other printed matter for more general images, text and the colored scraps that I use as design elements. And it’s especially fun to add found object paper to the mix – such as this ‘Biker’s For Jesus’ flyer I found on the street.


I love to wind down the day working on my collage book. It’s a wonderful distillation of my experiences and I the remembrance quality of the books – capturing favorite moments and places, elements of the place I am spending time in and exploring.

These books are much more about the ‘doing’ for me than the final art of the project. I really get into the focus and transformation energy that occurs as you take elements from one aspect and capture them in another form. This is a free-form collage in the structure of the trip. I love it all.

I’ve got three pieces coming to completion in the studio and I look forward to sharing them soon.

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Thanks for sharing!