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Some of my most vivid childhood reading memories revolve around Jeannie Baker books.
Each page in her books is a miniature collage artwork.
I was lucky enough to attend a collage workshop with Jeannie recently.
Here are some tips that I picked up from this amazing artist and picture book creator, along with some simple collage projects for kids that you can do at home.
Collage comes from the French word colle, to paste or glue. So you will need glue of some form. We use Mod Podge A LOT here, which also acts as a sealant.
My 3-year-old loves the novelty of a glue stick, so that humble device is frequently used around here.
Jeannie specifically mentioned that she never uses glue sticks. The main tip she offered when it comes to the topic of glue, is that it needs to be applied in a nice, smooth layer. Which almost never happens here.
So what will you use to glue down with the kiddies?
Jeannie uses a combination of natural and artificial materials and prefers to use the actual material portrayed- so leaves, bark, feathers. She explained that she uses a slightly complicated process to preserve and colour natural materials and therefore recommended against going down that path.
To keep things relatively simple, my preferred material for kiddy collage is paper.
We paint old picture books and the White Pages.
Then we cut and paste to our heart’s delight.
With this project, we pasted shapes over the top of a previous artwork that Miss 3 had painted.
Jeannie suggested that you always paint the background in the colour that you wish it to be so that when you collage over the top of it, you don’t get the “wrong” colour poking through in any gaps that may occur.
Miss 3 instructed me on what shapes she wanted me to cut out to create objects.
She then worked the glue stick.
To create these butterflies, I used tape to mark out an area on some coloured cardboard.
I then unleashed Miss 3 with the Mod Podge and painted paper chips.
Once the area was covered and the glue had dried, I used a template to cut out the shape of a butterfly.
We also love using sparkly, buttony loose parts for collage. The beauty of this art technique is that you are only really limited by your imagination.
If you’d like some more inspiration, check out these posts…