Authors: Elsebeth Gynther and Christine Clemmensen
ISBN: 13:978-I-60059-386-4
Publisher: Lark Books

Click Here To Purchase Scraps: An Inspirational Field Guide to Collage

Scraps is not exactly a primer on collage.  It does not thoroughly cover all possible aspects of the genre as do books such as The Crafter’s Complete Guide to Collage by Amanda Pearce or Creative Collage Techniques by Leland and Williams.

But what it does do very well is provide a plethora of inspiration for a certain type of collage artist -- the hesitant type who likes to collect large quantities of ephemera but is not sure what to do with it -- on how to get started on organizing those individual pieces into a collage.

Instead of beginning with tools and techniques, like so many other books do, Scraps begins with more inspirational and generally informative chapters regarding collage art like “Getting Started” which contains the following subsections: “Everyday Treasures,” “Store-bought Supplies,” “Collecting Ideas,” and “Creativity Long Forgotten.”  The tools and techniques chapter, “Working with Paper,” is sixth in the table of contents, but many of the techniques presented there are specifically cross-referenced in the earlier, more generally inspiring chapters, so it’s easy for the reader to find the techniques and tools they need at the point of inspiration.

Generously scattered throughout the text are examples of the authors’ own collage art, placed there to very helpfully support a point in the text.  These collages are very skillfully rendered, somewhat quirky, full of beautiful ephemera and, in most cases, accompanied by a small, helpful explanatory note. 

The authors were artists in other genres (fabric design and graphic design) before discovering collage and that works for the book very well: they are obviously very knowledgeable and familiar with important art concepts and mediums.  And because they have come to collage relatively recently, they still retain their sense of wonder and excitement towards the genre and, more importantly, they can explain it well to the uninitiated.  I don’t believe that a new but hesitant collage artist, who is specifically interested in ephemera, could possibly read through this book without getting up and getting started, but just in case, the authors have thrown in a few helpful chapters at the end entitled “34 Ways to Jumpstart a Collage,” “19 Ways to Create Pattern and Structure,” and “48 Themes in no Particular Order.”

Perhaps the book isn’t for the experienced collage artist but it’s an extremely useful tool for the beginner and will also provide the scrapbooker and/or card-maker with a plethora of new ideas in order to take their craft to a new artistic level.

Click Here To Purchase Scraps: An Inspirational Field Guide to Collage