Collage Fodder: So Many Circles

I’m not quite set-up for video tutorials yet, so you’re getting this the old fashioned way … multiple photos and descriptive text in a blog post!

Step 1: Gesso the paper!

I’m using a sheet of 11×17 printer paper. Nothing fancy. Gesso is applied haphazardly. No need to get precious. I used a brush this go round, sometimes I use a scraper (old bank card). Apologies for the messy kitchen table. I’m STILL in the process of organizing my office/studio. SIGH!

Step 2: Paint Some Circles

I tend to use craft paint, rather than my more expensive paints, when I’m working on paper this large. But use whatever paints you have. I’ll use several colors and several brushes of different sizes.

These painted circles are loose and scribbly and open. As you can see in the next photo, I decided to change up the color scheme a bit. Adding lime green and dark teal. This completes the loose brush circles stage. You could do another layer with each color, switching out the brushes, and call this good. But I’m going for SO MANY CIRCLES>


Step 3: Closed Circles Through A Stencil

The next step is to add some closed circles over the loose circles. I chose to use my stencil, but you can absolutely use a dot making tool or free hand the closed circles. I used all the colors, except the light yellow, as it’s too transparent to show well with this technique. They’re not perfect, as craft paint can slide under stencils. I use re-uble silicone make-up sponges, to minimize waste and be a little more green!

Aain, you could absolutely stop after this step and it would be a great bit of painted paper for collage. But I’m going for lots of layers and SO MANY CIRCLES!

Step 4: Open Circles With Paint Lids

While I used the same sized lid for all of my circles on this layer, you can certainly use a variety of lids of various sizes to make your circles. They don’t even need to be from paint bottles. They could be salad dressing or condiment lids, etc.

I put a small but of the pint in my little palette, then mash the lid around to get good coverage, but not so much coverage that the paint gets too gloopy (that’s a very technical term).

Repeat with each color you want to add to your painted paper!

Final Step: Smaller Closed Circles Through A Stencil

And the final paint application for this painted paper piece is another round of adding paint through a stencil. This stencil makes smaller and smaller circles and I’ve added it to give the painted paper one more bit of texture.

This is a very bright and very busy painted paper. Not all collage papers need be this busy. But I’m a fan of lots of layers, so this is often how my painted papers turn out! I used five colors on this piece, but I didn’t use every color in every step. I just went with my intuition on each layer. But you don’t need five colors. Two or three would be great. Black, white and a pop of color would also work here. Tomorrow I’ll be sharing some variations of painted papers made with a variety of circle tools and mediums.

I’ll also be sharing a patchwork technique.