Every collage begins with an idea – often inspired by the colour combinations of individual stamps I have discovered while sorting, and sometimes just by contrasts I’ve stumbled across in day to day life – a sky, or a leaf, or something as mundane as a cup of cocoa or the juxtaposition of two tins in a cupboard…
I spend hours sorting out my stamps by colour into the boxes you see above (there are many boxes!). The process of a new collage begins by manually sifting through to find stamps to match my chosen palette in similar and/or complimentary tones. The stamps scatter around my work space, and I keep sifting, laying down, swapping stamps in and out until I am happy with the result. I usually leave a layout overnight before gluing into place, as I often see a piece differently after taking a complete break from it.
Although the broad colour scheme is usually chosen for me (via custom orders) the actual shades and colour progressions are led by the individual stamps which have fallen into place, and all kinds of unexpected nuance can emerge as a result of this organic process. It’s fascinating to watch a collage come to completion, like piecing together a jigsaw without a picture on the box!
Find out more in these blog posts describing the composition process: