For my own records, and hopefully of interest to you, I decided to snap a few photographs capturing the first step in the process I take in creating one of my final collages.
After creating the collage digitally, I then take it all apart again and print each of the individual images separately. Then, one by one I cut out each piece and eventually reassemble each one onto the original background which is the ground for the final collage. See last photo below.
For this particular collage, which is approximately 8 x 16 inches at 300 dpi, I first reduced it to an 8 x 10 inch size and ink jet printed it on to Epson matte photo paper so that I would have an archival piece when it was finished. After printing, (and lunch!) the cutting began. The cutting process took me about 2 -3 hours today and I tried out my new pair of Ginger embroidery scissors that have a curved tip to them. Although they are quite stiff, the blades are razor sharp and resulted in relatively accurate crisp edges. However, regardless of the accuracy of the cuts, the white edges of the paper are always glaringly apparent. To resolve this, I use either a felt tipped pen (sepia for this piece) or over larger surfaces that are relatively straight, I can take a Stazon ink pad and carefully rub it over the white. My goal in doing this is to have the final piece appear as though it's one image, and yet retain the feel of each subtle edge if I were to pass my fingertips over the surface of the paper.
I'd love to hear any tips or advice those of you who also collage undertake when cutting OR pasting your collages.
- Laid out but not yet glued, just a few more edges to trim up and I'll be ready to hand color the edges and then move on to the much written about pasting step!