Collage Universe: Bringing Life to Printed Artifacts | Morgan Lappin | Skillshare

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Collage Universe: Bringing Life to Printed Artifacts

teacher avatar Morgan Lappin, Founder of Brooklyn Collage Collective

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

8 Lessons (44m)
    • 1. Welcome!

    • 2. Class Project & Tools

    • 3. Sourcing, Organizing, & Creating Your Space

    • 4. Making Cuts: Foreground & Background

    • 5. Put It Together: Foreground & Background

    • 6. Characters in New Environments

    • 7. Portals & Windows

    • 8. Wrapping Up

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About This Class

Collage Universe with Morgan Jesse Lappin is an informative, hands-on class exploring different types of analog collage, the various approaches one can take when creating them, and the therapeutic benefits collage can offer. Join in to learn the incredible process of creating 3 different types of analog collage works from conceptualization, assemblage, to extraordinary finished pieces.

From start to finish, the class will cover:

  • Tools and space creation for collage making
  • Sourcing and organizing collage materials
  • Making clean cuts
  • Method 1: Foreground & Background Collages
  • Method 2: Placing Characters in New Environments
  • Method 3: Portals & Windows

This class is open to anyone, regardless of experience. Collage is probably one of the least intimidating forms of art, and allows your vision to come to life within a day. It’s perfect for anyone who enjoys organizing, using their hands, appreciating fine details, and completing creative projects from beginning to end.

Suggested tools and materials: A self-healing cutting mat, a cutting pen with blade (XACTO or Excel brand), scissors, glue or tape, and magazines or books for collage material. I also offer course supply kits through my Etsy shop that include pages of material from encyclopedias, National Geographic, Life magazine, and other various vintage publications. 

Meet Your Teacher

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Morgan Lappin

Founder of Brooklyn Collage Collective


Morgan Jesse Lappin b. 1979 is a visual artist, entertainer, musician and image-maker Lappin first started creating collage art in 2007 for a clothing company creating original designs. In 2008, Lappin moved to Brooklyn and began working with paper to create contemporary collages. His art, like his mind, is a combination of comedy and chaos with elements of music, vintage horror and sci-fi. Lappin’s work ranges from seven-foot- long cartoon metropolises, to fictional album covers, to take-out Greek diner coffee cups embedded with tiny paper worlds. 

He uses nostalgic material from his childhood from the 80s, such as VHS Tape boxes, video game cartridges, and any other 80's house hold items that could cause you to experience flashbacks. Having a background in collecting... See full profile

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1. Welcome!: Welcome, to the world of collage with your host, Morgan Jesse Lappin. When I was young, I used to visit my grandmother and she had a World Book, Encyclopedia set. I just loved going through these books and I was very attracted to the pictures inside of them, and that actually became the first source of material that I used to create collage. It all started in 2007, I teamed up with a friend. We started a t-shirt company and my way of coming up with designs, was basically using collage as a way to come up with the original designs. In 2013, I started something called the Brooklyn collage collective, where I teamed up some of my favorite local collage artists. We wound up showcasing around the world we showed in Australia, London, Canada. But after that, I actually fell in love with the idea of combining my artwork with a peril. I teamed up with a company called The very warm, and that's when they utilize my artwork in the inside of their jackets. It was picked up by Nordstrom, is sold out. It made me feel amazing, so I actually wound up starting my own unique collage paradigm. We're going to start off with sourcing, organizing your collages for three different types of collages that we're going to review throughout this lesson, which is foreground backgrounds, and then we're going to move to character placement, taking characters from different pages and putting them in completely new environments. Then we're going to move on to Porto collages, which you'll be able to show different worlds through different portals, different universes within different worlds. It's blissful, it's beautiful, and it's something that anybody can fall in love with. Are you prepared, are you're ready to have fun? Welcome to the world of collage. 2. Class Project & Tools: In this lesson, we're going to review what we're going to approach throughout the first lesson, and we're also going to talk about the tools you need to get there. Before we begin, we have to learn how to source the material and how to organize it. The first lesson we're going to go into is foreground and background. As a class, we are going to try to complete three solid foreground and background collages. Then the second lesson, we're going to be making character collages. We're going to be taking characters, they can be from comic books, they could be from magazines, newspapers, they can come from anywhere. We're going to take these characters and we're going to put them in a completely new environment. For the third part of the class project, we're going to actually look into portals and windows, and this is going to allow you to create literal portals and windows into different universes within the worlds you are already working with. Sounds and tense, but it's easy and it's very rewarding. All you need are a few basic tools to get started. I'm going to show you the tools that I use. Then remember, any approach that's comfortable for you, any tool that makes sense to you is the tool that you should stick with. To begin, the most important thing is your cutting tool. What are we going to use? This isn't exactly a knife, but there are other companies that make them like Excel, which I've worked with before, and they're a wonderful company. Then you're going to need the self-healing cutting mat. Now, this company is called Workline, and there are a lot of different companies that make self-healing cutting mats. When I first started, I would use the front and backs of books. This does not work because what it does is it starts to dull your blade. If you don't have a cutting knife, that's fine. You can always begin with scissors. I started with scissors, and it's a beautiful way to get into collage. When it comes to cutting blades, I always used the number 11. My favorite blade is made by X-Acto, and it's called X-Life. I find that these blades last the longest. Believe it or not, a charcoal stick could be your best friend when it comes to making your collages looks seamless, and I'll explain us a little bit later. My weapon of choice when creating collages is tape, and not glue. There's a few reasons for this, and I'll explain later. I use white artists tape, and I also use a double-sided stick tape made by Scotch. There is a style number, and that is 924. When looking for the double-sided stick tape, this is very user-friendly. If you make a mistake, you can beat it up and roll it off and you can start again. My ideas and tools have evolved over time, and this will probably happen to you when you start making collage too. Again, starts simply. Use whatever you have in the house. It could be scissors, that's perfectly fine, whatever you're comfortable with and eventually your style will evolve just like mine did. If you don't have anything around the house to start off with and you just can't get yourself to cut up the books that you have, I actually have beginner collage packets available on my Etsy site that are a healthy mix of backgrounds, foregrounds, characters, and both color in black and white. I got it all, just for you. I'm going to give you different approaches to making each type of collage and then you're going to make one yourself. 3. Sourcing, Organizing, & Creating Your Space: In this video, we're going to be covering, sourcing and organizing what you've sourced. This is actually one of my most favorite parts of making collage because it's all about the hunt. You can find images anywhere from thrift stores, your own house, from the streets as long as you clean it. Libraries that are throwing up books. There's always a way to find source material to create collages. When it comes to making collage, my favorite material comes from lifetime magazine. I use National Geographic, I use old newspapers. But it's up to you, whatever images that you see in your mind, whatever is most attractive to you, is the material that you're going to stick with. Like hunting for records, this is one of the most enjoyable parts of making a collage because you don't know what you're going to find. It's basically going to hunt for an a visible treasure you don't even know exists until you find it. To make a puzzle that doesn't quite exist until you finish it. There are many ways to approach organizing your found material but we're going talk about my method, which I think is a sound way to approach collage, which keeps everything organized and in one place. Organizing material when it comes to collage is very important because it's very easy to lose pages in this can seriously drive you crazy. Before even getting into collage, you want to make sure that your organization setup is proper and focused and this will allow your work to become stronger and more focused. You also have to be careful about overloading and hoarding because this can become a problem. The more you hoard, the more messy or your space is going to be and this is where you can lose focus. It's very important to keep everything that you find organized before even getting into these projects. The first step is to obtain the material, cut down the pages, organize them by theme and then file them. Remember, name your files. You don't think you may need to but believe me, later on you'll realize why you need to name these files. Your workspace needs to be calm and collected because this is a very therapeutic form of art. You want to make sure that your space is clean of clutter. You want to be able to identify your clips easily. You want to be able to see everything laid out in front of you. The more organized you are, the better your work will be. The best light and this goes for any type of medium is the sunlight. It allows the whole room to be illuminated. Again, some of the clips that you create maybe very tiny. Lighting is actually very important when creating collage. Music plays a big role in the outcome of my collages because it definitely represents the mood that I'm in at the time so this is very important to me. If I'm listening to heavy metal, maybe I'll make something little bit fierce. If I'm listening to bach, maybe I'm going to make something surreal and beautiful and simple. You need to make sure you're feeling comfortable and focus when listening to this music. Maybe metal is not for you. Maybe you need to throw on the Yani record but whatever makes you feel comfortable in the zone, this is what you're going to want to listen to when making collage. Although collages for everyone, you have to be careful. Your hands have to be studied because we are going to be using some sharp tools. This is important to remember. If you are younger, you may want to have a parent around to assist you with your collages. First, we'll start with the knife. Remember, this is cylindrical. It can roll off the table. You have to be very careful. Most importantly, don't stab your own hand unless it's someone else's. Because now we can use this as a blade stand. Throughout the years, I realized that again, a file cabinet is the best way to organize your clips and to keep it simple in the beginning because you're going to find, you're going to be attracted to a lot of different themes and ideas when you continue to make collage. This allows you to build your rolodex of images. We covered sourcing, we covered organizing the material that you sourced. We covered your tools and how to be safe with them. Let's get into making some collage. 4. Making Cuts: Foreground & Background: Now we're starting off with foreground and background collages. There are some of my favorite examples of foreground and background collages. The first artist is Hugo Barros, this is actually one of the first collage artists that I found and inspired me on the internet. The second example of work is by an artist named Jesse Treece, he too is one of the first collage artists that I found on the internet that really inspired me. The reason that I use these examples is because they are amazingly seamless and the color matching is absolutely amazing. These show great depth and are a perfect example in skeleton to follow when making background collages. When I look at these I really feel as if I'm able to enter those worlds. That's one of the most important parts of making a collage from me, to seem like you can walk into these pictures and live there. They're different approaches you can take to getting foreground and background. Sometimes your foreground may not involve any characters at all, I chose this clip to start off with. Now this is from Lifetime Magazine, which is awesome because, remember, Life Magazine has some of the biggest pages in most vibrant colors available when making collages. This one is a little bit tricky actually, I'm going to start with something a little bit intense just to show you some of the tips you can take to ensure that you're going to get the right cuts. So as we can see for example here, there's a little girl with drumsticks. Now this paper, remember some of these magazines are from the '30s, the '40s, the '50s, so the paper is pretty fragile. The way to get a good cut on something so small like this and to keep it from ripping, sometimes what I like to do is reinforce the small clips with some tape. Now this gives a clip structure and it's not easily torn if I do this and we want to keep those drumsticks. We want to be a little bit safe here. I'm going to put my finger on top of the drum sticks to remember where these drum sticks are. Put the thumb and now I know where to placement of the tape goes. Again, this protects these little clips from ripping and now we're going to make a cut. Remember, very important to have sharp blades because a dull blade can lead to tearing the paper and that is not what we want, but there's always a solution if it does happen to tear. So we're making these cuts and remember, take your time. There's no rush and making collage, the more time you take, the better cuts you will get. Again, lighting is very important because you want to make sure your cuts are close to the image itself. You want your collages to be seamless. The reason that you want your collages to be seamless is because it looks like a real solid piece once you're finished, unless you're looking to keep the style as if it is collage. I myself like my finalized pieces to look as if it was taken almost like a photo. When cutting you want to check every once in a while to see where your cuts are because it's easy to lose where you made the cuts. So you want to push out the cut ever so slightly and gently to see what you've already accomplished. We're going to continue to cut around the stick very gently. We're going to do a little test here to see where we're at with the stick. You can also use the tip of the knife to go under the clip and left. Again, very gently because this happens to be a very fragile clip. Sometimes even just pressing down ever so slightly with the tip of the blade here you can release the clip. You don't want to push down too hard or it can lead to damaging the clip. It's almost like surgery. So after this lesson you may want to become a doctor. Remember, it's very important to take your time. You want to show these fragile pieces, that leads to your piece being much stronger, because people will respect the small intricacies of your collage. This is a great way to practice accuracy and pressure when making collages. It'll help you find your style. We just completed the first cut for the foreground background piece that we're going to make for this video. Again, when making your cuts take your time, be steady, because this paper is fragile and you don't want to make any boo-boos. So there's never a rush when making a physical collage. Again, going back, while cutting you want to make sure that the slack, the paper that you don't need that, you're cutting out, is chipped away at early. Because it can get caught on your cutting mat and this can tear the whole piece in half when shifting around you don't want that to happen. As you cut these pieces remember to cut the excess and put it aside. Interestingly enough you may use these cuts for a different collage later. So you can categorize these cuts in a folder to show that you've already cut images out of them to create something new later on. Then when you're done with the cut and you are ready with your first clip, you should review. Check everything before you go onto the next stage, because you wanna make sure that your complete on the first stage. So if you have any excess, just small cuts any clouding around the clip, you want to make sharp, you want to smooth out. In preparation for the next stage. One thing to keep in mind when cutting is that you want to be comfortable with your cutting style. If you're comfortable, you're going to make the most accurate cuts. So if you feel the need to turn the page while you're making these collages, do so. I actually turn to page myself on different cuts, and this allows me to make the most accurate cuts. Also when collaging remember to try to bevel and a little bit. You want to cut in not so much on top, because remember, this is paper and the thicker the paper you use, the more of the clip you'll see and that's when you lose that seamless look. You'll lose the seamless look if your clips are not cut beveled in. You want to cut somewhat at an angle and this allows the image to stay afloat, lessening the paper surrounding of the clip because you will see a white surrounding. Again, one of the main goals when making a collage you want it to look seamless and this will definitely help. 5. Put It Together: Foreground & Background: We have our foreground. Now as a fun part, let's choose the background. Now, I have a few backgrounds to choose from right here to show you the different dos and don'ts of finishing this piece here. Let's see. Wonderful. Strawberries, pineapples, does it work though? Now, for me, this is a little bit too busy, a little bit too colorful, and it doesn't really look seamless. Although I too would love to be prancing on strawberries, this just doesn't work. The reason that this piece doesn't work is because the colors are clashing, it's a little bit too much, and that's not what we're really going for in this class. We're going to push this to the side because we don't want the collages to hurt your eyeballs. We want to be nice and serene. Let's try something like this. This works. This background comes from a book that I found in a thrift store, actually, it's about the Old West, and it just happens to be the same size of lifetime magazine page. This actually works, by chance, perfectly. The colors look seamless. It looks like they're actually in this world, and this is really what we're trying to go for, a seamless collage. Because it almost looks as if it was a photograph taken. But let's try something with a little bit more depth, which also gives a lot of power to your collage. This right here is a perfect example. This was taken from Life magazine. Depending on where you place it gives it a completely different feel. Not really feeling that one. Let's spin it around. Now, this is pretty cool. The reason that I like this background and foreground combination is that it gives depth, and that's very important to me when making a collage. It also looks slightly seamless. We're going to try to spinning it around one more time because I think I'm going to get the effect that I'm really going for. There we go. It almost looks as if there is a rainbow sunshine behind the hill. This really gives the piece perspective, it gives a depth, and it shows great distance behind them, and I think it makes us a much more powerful piece. Now, the reason that I'm going to choose this background is because it makes it look surreal, and that's the world that I'm going for for this particular piece. If we went with the original background, it almost looks as if it was meant to be, and this doesn't really seem too exciting to me, although the depth is pretty cool and the perspective is beautiful, unless maybe we turn it upside down, which can always change the game when making a collage, but doesn't work well with this one. Well, it's definitely more trippy, but I'm still not getting the effect that I'm going for. Throughout the years of making collage, I've noticed the theme that is ongoing, which is filling voids with space and galaxy pages. Although this is cool and even though it's a very strong background for any collage, I feel like it's been overplayed, but it's still attractive. This doesn't quite fit this piece because of the size, although it could be cut down. This background I got from a book that I purchase at a thrift store. Again, this is a great source for material, because you can fine tune the source material. This happened to been a book about space and planets, and so I was able to harvest a lot of great backgrounds from that book. But ultimately, we're going to go with this background over here. When I'm making collage and I don't have any specific idea in mind, anything is game. A lot of times when I take that route and I put two pieces together, it's a natural feel, a natural click in my mind that I experience that tells me this piece is done, and if you feel that feeling, don't mess around with anymore backgrounds, because this is a process that can go forever. This is very chill, this is very cool, and I'm going to stick with this because I feel good about it immediately, and that's something important to think about when making collage. When it hits you, you know it, stick with it, because that's the most powerful piece you're going to get. I have a few cuts that I already made previous to this lesson that I want to mess around with, because I think we're going to get some really cool examples of foreground and background with these particular clips, and it also shows you using black and white and color clips in combinations with colored and black and white backgrounds. First, we're going to start with this really cool house right over here. Let's try that clip we messed around with before with the kid marching band. Again, showing depth, it's seamless and very surrealistic, and the colors match. Everything is desaturated. It's not too colorful, pleasant on the eyes, and I think this is a beautiful march. But let's try something black and white with this color foreground. Pretty interesting, because the background has a lot of depth and you can really look past the house, stuck in this strange black and white forest. Pretty cool. Here's a classroom that I cut out from a lifetime magazine, so let's try putting this in a few of the backgrounds that we already have laid out. Again, a great example of a black and white clip combined with the color clip, and this works perfectly. This is a little bit more seamless. When I mean seamless, when I bring up the term seamless, is that it looks like one photograph. But we're making it surreal. We're giving it that. Now let's try combining the black and white clip with some color. Now, although this is black and white and a background is in color, it still looks seamless. It looks like it's still part of the same picture. But this is a little bit, again, more surrealistic because everything else is in color and they're basically leaning on top of a hill. But there's great depth into the background of this piece, and to me that makes it a powerful piece. Although this background right here is a little bit thicker than this front piece, I'm just going to simply cut it down to make it work. Let's see here. Where do we want to place this background? Because I think this is the one that we're going to choose. How do we find the right placement? We're going to move it around a little bit. Now I'm going to make a little bit of a mark with a piece of soft charcoal. Now, I use soft charcoal because you can easily rub it away with your finger, but it's just enough to make a marker where you want to place the clip. I'm going to mark off the corner here. Now I'm going to check my sides of my clips to make sure that they're straight, because this is obviously very important. If your clips are not straight, they won't look right when they're framed, and obviously you want your collage to look as beautiful as possible. When cutting your clip, remember to keep your palm flat on the clip if you can fit your hand on it, because you want to make sure that clip does not move while you're cutting. Keep your hand firmly pressed on your clip when using a ruler to cut the edges to make sure they are straight. Also, never be afraid to change your blade. You want to make sure that your blade is sharp at all times because you get the best costs if you do. I have these two clips and I can't wait to put these two together. We're going to use double-sided tape for this one. Again, this is the Scotch 924. You're going to want to remember that when you go to the art store. I'm going to take a pair of scissors, I'm going to ever so slightly peel back the beginning of the row. We don't need much, we don't want to use too much adhesive, just in case we make a mistake. I cut this little piece off and I'm going to release the back, leaving the double-sided film on the tip of my finger. Again, a small amount works. I'm going to take the tip of my finger with this double-sided tape, and I'm going to place it on the back of this page. Now, one of my methods to making collages, I like the drop shadow of the clips, and this is also why I don't use glue. I don't want everything to be flat, I want a little bit of depth, and using double-sided tape helps you to get that effect. We have the double-sided tape on these clips here, we have the background. We know where we're going to place it, to the same size. Very excited. Drum roll, please. It's alive. Our first collage, do you feel the power? Let's see what we got. Wow, look at that man, and look at that beautiful waterfall, that looks so realistic. The colors look great, it's seamless, it's exactly what we're going for. We did it. Let's review. The key principles, the background and foreground is that you don't want the final piece to hurt your eyes. You want it to look seamless. I know I keep on using that word, but it's very important because it makes it look like one photograph. The color matching also allows it to be seamless because you don't want a background that's too saturated and a bottom that's desaturated, because you're going to get a negative effect. Again, you want it to look like it was photographed, but still keep that surrealistic idea and the depth within the shots. After this lesson, you can begin to get your material, get it organized, get your tools out, and try a few examples of mixing and matching your different clips. Again, keep it simple when starting because this helps you eliminate stress, feeling like you're getting into something that you've never gotten into. You want to minimalize that, so keep your clips to a low mount. 6. Characters in New Environments: We just completed foregrounds and backgrounds. I'm feeling great. Let's take it up a notch. Let's try putting different characters from different publications in different environments. They can be from children's book, like this, the Snoopy and Woodstock, very cute, but let's place them in a real-world. What else do we have? All male dance troupe, beautiful, they're talented. Let's put it down. Here's a famous icon, it's Marilyn Monroe, Mr. President. We're going to wind up using these guys to make our piece, because they make me laugh. That's another big part of collage. Any collage is able to make you laugh, you know you've got something going on there. I was lucky enough to find these guys in a Time Life magazine. Again, the colors are beautiful, love the composition, and it also shows depth with having one character upfront and the other two characters in the back. Now before we get into this next piece, let's change our blades. When you change your blade, always remember to dispose of the old blade. You don't want to cut yourself. Now we're going to try something different. We're not going to just take these superheroes and place them in a world looking flat. Although this is a great juxtaposition of colors and black and white backgrounds, and I do love the feel of this piece, we're going to try something different. Let's move them over to this beautiful kitchen living room setup from the seventies. What we're going to do is we're not going to simply just place them on the front, because that really doesn't look right at all. What are we going to do to make this work? I'll show you. We're going to run around the kitchen, and we're going to take the blade, and we're going to actually cut around the kitchen and the sofa, and we're going to slide this clip in to the environment. Let's try that. The difference between putting the characters right into the environment and sliding them into this particular environment is to show depth. Again, it's going to look like a real photo, but how many superheroes are running around in kitchens? Let's make it happen. The year is 1987 and NASA launches the last of America's deep space probes. In a freak mishap Ranger 3 and its pilot Captain William ''Buck'' Rogers are blown out of their trajectory into an orbit which freezes his life support systems, and returns "Buck" Rogers to Earth Before doing anything see if your cuts are correct. Lift the page, gently slide your hand under and push up ever so gently to make sure that everything is cut sharp enough to slide the piece behind. Now, sometimes this requires a lot of detail. I cut around the kitchen counter, I swooped around the sofa into the kitchen table, and I even went as far as the cut under the kitchen table to pull the leg of the character underneath it to show that they're really involved in this environment. Now we're gently going to take these guys and we're going to put them on the top of the page. Now remember again, this paper is fragile, it's easy to rip, so take your time. We're going to slide our hands underneath, and we're going to open up this little pocket here, and we're going to slide our characters right in there, gently. Now they may get caught in some of the cuts. Again, take your time. Now they're in the pocket, and we talked about going the distance, so we made a cut under the table. Now we're going to ever so slightly bend this back, and we're going to put the characters leg in that cut. We really want them to be in this kitchen. That looks pretty good to me, I love it. The colors match, it looks seamless, but how are we going to keep these characters in the kitchen? We're going to use two different methods. We're going to use double-sided tape and we're going to use normal artist's tape. First, so that the characters do not move, we're going to use only a little bit of double-sided tape. Again, peel back the scotch 924 double-sided tape, take a little snip, we don't need that much. Leave the double-sided tape on your finger, peel the character back and start anywhere you'd like. We're going to put this in the back of his hand just to keep them steady and we're going to press it down a little bit. We're going to do this with each character, so they stay in place for the next stage, which will be the tape. Now that they're double-sided taped to the environment. Just to make it structurally sound, we're going to turn it around and there are their legs and look, it's a completely different collage. That's one of the cool things about collages, there's a lot of surprises, you don't see until they actually happen. Sometimes mistakes could lead the collages if you have the right pieces out on your table at the same time, it's a beautiful thing. Now we're going to just secure these cuts, but some of this archival artist's tape. Again, you don't need much, because if you do change your mind on placement, you can definitely lift the tape. But you have to be very careful, and again, take your time, no rush, this is all about serenity now. We have the tape in place again, we didn't go too crazy because we really don't need to go too crazy with tape, this is a very simple collage. Let's turn it over and let's see what we got. Again, to add depth and reality to this crazy surrealistic photo of superheroes ready to eat breakfast, I made sure a few things. I made sure that I cut the bottom of the table to bring his leg down, because I don't want that to be covered. Again, this gives depth to the piece. I kept the characters in the center of the page because I felt like this probably is the best way to send the message that this is a real photograph. Another interesting thing that you can do when putting different characters in environments is use yourself as the character silly pants. Look, it's me. What year is this? 1998. How cute? Selfies are old school. Why not create a collage selfie with yourself? Where am I going to go? Let's try something new. This is an interesting little world. Let's try just placing myself right here with these water buffaloes. It does look cool, but I want to try to really up my game with this little guy. Now, what we did with the superheroes in the kitchen, we're going to do the same thing with me, because I felt like just placing myself in an environment flat like that, really didn't give me the depth that I was looking for. Here we go, hanging out with the water buffaloes. Some extra cuts are needed. Let's lift that up a little bit here to make sure that I have everything, we are getting close to this masterpiece being finished, and there we go. The pocket is open, let's slide myself behind the water buffaloes. Oh, look at that. You know what? Let's try something here. We're going to cut a little bit around my arm and I'm going to show you exactly why we're going to do that. Again, we're going for depth, and this small little tip will give you just that. Let's try again. Now I can raise my arm on top of the water buffalo. What did we cover? We put a bunch of superheroes in a kitchen, and we placed a photograph of myself in a cartoon environment, and what we learned is a few new approaches. We gave it depth by actually creating a pocket to slide your characters into, and not just placing them flatly into a new world. Next up, we're going to work on some portals in windows. 7. Portals & Windows: I'm excited. Are you excited? Because I'm very excited, because we're going to be playing with portals and windows. Windows into different dimensions, different worlds. You ever see the show sliders? Now you can live it, let's do it. So the clips that I chose for portals in windows are specific. It's doorways, windows, mirrors. All of these can be used as portals into different worlds. The first clip I chose for windows and portals is very simple. It is an old house depicted in the middle of the night. Pretty spooky. But what's going to fill this void? It was a bunch of old people dancing, break dancing that is. Let's change it up, let's try something different. So I have a few examples. Let's test them out. Let's try this. Really don't know how to identify this. It might be the inside of your body, but I can't tell. Wow. Do you really want to go into that house? I do. But what will happen? I don't know. Pretty score sheet. Maybe not the right piece for this house. Let's try something else. Ever feel like going into outer space without a rocket ship? Well now you can, although this backdrop is too big right now, this is a pretty beautiful portal right here. It can always be cut down and shaped to your liking, to the background environment clip. You don't have to stick to putting different worlds in the portals. You can actually place characters in the portals. So let's try that. But in this instance, we're going to give a little bit of a background, because I want to make sure that there's no negative space. You want to make sure that your windows are filled with your background clips. So we're going to try this strange little picture over here. Now we're going to place these dudes underneath through the window. The telephone booth. We're going to pull it through the portal. This piece is a little bit too crowded with imagery. I want the portal to be the main focus. So let's try something else. Now this is a clip I've been dying to mess around with. This is from a Time-Life magazine, shows bunch of kids trick or treating, and I cut down the background, but we can use a lot of examples. We can try this clip again, which is pretty cool. I actually do enjoy the combination of these colors and it is seamless. But when I started laying these clips out, I actually made a mistake that turned into a piece idea. Let's try that out. By accident, I took this piece and I laid it on top of the other portal piece over here. It just happened by chance to fit perfectly. Looks like she just woke up and I'm really feeling the vibe of this. The number one reason that I use this clip is because it has a very dreamy vibe. That's what I'm going with this portal piece. That's what I'm trying to go for and that's what I got through mistake. When creating a portal piece, there are still tips and rules that I follow, that I use for all my other types of collage. Remember, make it look seamless, and there are ways to do that with the accurate cuts that you make, sometimes darkening the edges with the charcoal stick definitely helps. But today I also wanted to go with the vibe of being dreamy, which is something we all have. We all love dreams. It's an amazing way to even showcase your dreams through collage, which a lot of people do. The color contrast is also important because I don't want anything too strong, I want these two pieces to look cohesive together as a unit, as if it was already photographed, but it's still carrying the idea of surrealistic landscapes. Now it's up to you to source the right material for the portal pieces. Again, anything with windows, doorways, anything like that, where you can fill a void, even if you cut a character out, you can fill that void with a different idea behind it, a different environment, whether it be the forests, the galaxy, glittery paper even. As long as you have a void to fill, that is a portal piece. 8. Wrapping Up: Wow, congratulations, we did it. We covered some very important collage information there, some different techniques, tips, and styles to approach making your own collage. We started off with foreground and background. We edged our way into placing characters in different environments and then we even covered portals and Windows. Although you have a lot of options to make each type of collage, let's try with sticking with one collage per lesson. Don't overload yourself. If you want to start with just making one collage with one of these themes, go ahead. This can help you start to choose your own path in a style that you want to use when making collage. One of the reasons that I did this lesson is because I love inspiring people to choose collage as a passion. So please share you finished collages with us after you completed that. One of the most important takeaways from this is that you started and completed a project and that's very therapeutic and it makes you feel great and this is an easy way to start. What you're walking away with is a new passion, piece of mind, and a completed piece of art work that you can share with your friends and family. Thank you for joining me in my quest and adventures through the world of collage.