In preparation for our monotype paper collages, we custom mill our wood frame profile, as well as the wood panel canvas. Creating our own framing structure allows us more flexibility in the final piece with regards to size and ratio.
Monotype: A type of printmaking made by painting on a smooth, non-absorbent surface. Once this painting is complete, the image is transferred
onto paper. There can only ever be one image
pulled from each prepared surface.
Our monotype paper collages are always inspired by an idea or feeling. The inspiration is roughly sketched onto paper, and then reworked until it becomes a strong and narrative composition. This idea of narrative is important to us, since we want the viewers to be able to place themselves in the piece.
The sketch is then enlarged to the size the finished collage will be. This is important because we use the drawing as a map or template for our cut paper shapes. In many ways, you can think of our collages as colorful, one of a kind jigsaw puzzles.
Once the enlargement of the drawing is done, we create a color theme that will run throughout the final piece. We hand print large monotype color flats using our open screens, incorporating brush-work and spatter techniques to achieve various textures. Once dry, we lay these colorful sheets of paper out on a large table to choose the right colors and textures for the finished piece.
Using the enlarged drawing as a template, we cut these monotypes out into the larger shapes of the collage using Xacto knives and medical scalpels. We then place the pieces onto the prepared board with archival glue. This step is the most time intensive, but it is incredibly rewarding to see the piece come to life.
We next seal the collage with a high quality, nontoxic resin to create a clear, flat surface. Once the resin has cured for 72 hours, we paint and scratch back onto the surface of the collage to add the final details to the piece.
After letting the piece fully dry, we seal it one more time with a gel medium. When the medium is cured, the piece is ready to package up in a hand-built crate and send it to its new home!