Memory Collage

This is one of the first art therapy pieces I ever created, and probably the most extensive to date.
I had been dealing with some issues, actively healing from childhood abuse, and trying to cope with some recurring images that seemed to be haunting me night and day. Creating this artwork — and especially putting a few key phrases on paper in a context of creativity and natural beauty — really helped me to make serious forward progress in my healing. I recommend it! 😀


I began with a very large sheet of watercolor paper, tearing and gluing down scrapbooking papers to mostly cover the page.


To create an aged look AND to unify the papers, I coated the whole thing with a single watercolor wash.


Next I glued down some images I had collected, some that had personal significance to me at the time.
I wrote out a few key phrases in a manner of purging them out of my heart and mind.


Now, to begin transforming this drab art into something with hidden but real beauty, I mixed gold paint with my two first-ever Golden mediumscoarse pumice gel and light molding paste — and put it through a few stencils to create raised texture.



I added a few smaller images, and outlined everything to make them “pop”. I used mostly oil pastels for this job, rubbing the crayon-like stick lightly near the edge of each item, then rubbing it into a smooth edging using just my bare fingers.


Check out the effect on this cross design:



Now I added the final touches: Natural items I had collected on my healing walks, including half of a robin’s egg, up in the top left corner. 😀



Here’s the step by step slideshow with extra pics:

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In case you are super-observant: Yes, the fox pic in the bottom right corner is not glued down. It is actually a little flap, hiding a personal element — something else I highly recommend! 😀




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