24 September 2010

HOW TO: Make a Collage

 A collage is a technique of composing work of art by pasting on one surface numerous materials not usually associated with each other. Making a collage is fun, easy, and creative!  You are going to make a collage to represent who you are.  What kind of things do you like?  What are  my hobbies, favorite colors, and favorite singers? You can put anything that you love into your collage! Be creative! It's about things that interest you!


  1. Collect materials for your collage, and find inspiration in them.
    • Traditional collage materials include scraps of paper and other flat materials: newspaper and magazine clippings, shopping bags, photographs (or photocopies of photographs), wallpaper, and foil.
    • Objects such as string, beads, feathers, and fabric.
    • Collage may encompass images, text, solid colors, or a mixture of these.  You may want a recognizable image or word, or simply a suggestion, feel, color, or texture.
    • Use what you have.  Start from available materials and work out from there.
    • Create what you don't have.  Since collage is an assemblage or blend of elements, it lends itself well to mixed media.  You could paint, draw, stamp, or stencil in between the elements you find, or cover over them.
    • Don't rule out unusual materials, like sandpaper, blurry photographs, etc.
  2. Choose a base for your collage. The base is usually flat paper or poster board because these are easiest to work with.
    • The background does not have to be white, and it does not have to be plain. The background could be a page from a magazine or book, a large photograph, or a page of text.  Paint or draw on it, or cover over it with anything that glue will stick to.
  3. Prepare the base by cutting the base to the desired size and shape.  Add any decorations or embellishments you want to the background.
  4. Use scissors. to cut out pieces for your collage. Try cutting your scraps into unusual shapes, cutting out words or letters from a variety of sources to make phrases on your collage.
    • Cut out a whole picture, an identifiable part, or just enough to evoke texture, colour or feeling.
    • Cut different shapes for both words and images.
  5. Try tearing materials too.  The rough, random edges give parts of your collage a different character than cutouts.
  6. Arrange the items on your background.
    • Play with the different elements and don't be afraid to make this part a messy process.  Serendipity may hand you something interesting that you hadn't thought of.
  7. Apply glue to each item.
    • You don’t have to cover the whole surface if you don’t want to, and not every piece has to be glued flat on the collage.  You can fold or crumple pieces of paper, for example, to get interesting textures.
  8. Let the finished collage dry completely.  Depending on the glue(s) you used, you may need to let the collage dry for a few hours or more than a day.


  • Take your time.  Be patient and carefully choose and arrange your materials.
  • A collage is a great opportunity to experiment.  Experiment with color, space, texture, arrangement, juxtaposition, and message.
  • If you enjoy image editing, try an electronic collage.  You have the ability to change scale, transparency, clarity, tone color, and many other qualities of images you manipulate electronically.  You can also combine digital and paper image editing by printing edited images to include in a paper collage.
  • If the materials on your collage do not stick perfectly after gluing, you can brush a diluted glue mixture (about 3 parts water to 1 part glue) over the whole collage once it is finished.  You can also use this technique to seal the collage.
  • You can try mixing your glue with water to make it easier to work with.  Try applying it with a brush.  You may find it helps with the handling.
  • Only use glues that are right for the materials you are pasting.  Some glues simply won’t hold certain materials, and some very strong glues may quickly damage your collage pieces.  Rubber cement is great because it doesn't wrinkle paper and is very strong.
  • If you want to plan out your collage, you can lay the pieces down on the surface without glue, rearranging them until you have it just right.  Then take a picture of the collage so you will know how to assemble it.
  • Make your collage however you want it, and don't be afraid to experiment with different techniques, images, etc.
  • A three-dimensional art piece created by combining found materials may be called an assemblage.
  • Let your mind run free.  Take pictures and put them all together.  Express yourself!
  • Be random.  Do not paste items in a straight line.

 Be careful!

  • Take appropriate precautions with scissors and glue.
  • Put down newspaper or plastic, especially if you are working with liquid glue or paint.Make sure you don't waste it!


Things You'll Need

  • Glue/paste.
  • Materials
  • Scissors or a craft knife
  • A base, such as a piece of stiff paper or newspaper

Article provided by wikiHow, a wiki how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Make a Collage.  All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

No comments:

Post a Comment

If you leave them, I read them!!