“Designer” Designs from Paper Scraps

When I first read “The Diary of Anne Frank” as a tween, the part that most tugged at my heartstrings, (besides the whole book…) was that she wrote her diary on scraps of paper. My 11-year old self became acutely aware that I had limitless access to as many sheets of paper, notebooks and journals as I could possibly want.  And ever since then, I’ve saved scraps of paper for reuse, way before recycling came to be the norm.

This habit takes the form of saving all scraps of water color paper, cheap drawing paper, cardboard, bristol board, multi-media paper, lined paper, paper cut from other art projects, blank newsprint, paper used for packing, old envelopes— you get it.

(a little further down in this post, you will come to a blank section which I can not clear–there must be a bug in WordPress’ program–just scroll a little further and the rest of the post appears. grrr. sorry.)

So for those times in the art studio where I really can’t get it together to do anything that seems productive, I pull out the scrap paper box and paw through it. Here is a  4″ x 8″ scrap that seems to have been used for several gelli ghost prints, (second pulls off of a print plate,) blotting up ink sprays and wiping off paint left on a brush or palate.


I often use High Flow Acrylic Paint, which has a thin, transparent consistency, to turn scraps into collage papers.  On this day I wanted to mix a green not available in my paints, so here’s what I chose:


And here’s the mixed green. So pretty!


I love how the high flow consistency actually highlights all the marks and unifies the scrap. This is what the above scrap paper looks like after “beautifying” it:


Then I pulled out a few more scraps, inspired to doodle away the time left in the art room.





















I also like to “carve” organic shapes into craft foam (usually by using a pencil) and then use the carved foam and paint to create collage papers.


Here’s some more finished collage scraps where I’ve used the foam stamps and high flow acrylics.FInal Collage BitsThen the scraps get organized by color into boxes and I use them in my abstract collages. While I have not yet used the above scraps to make something, I have a “Tiny Art” series which uses other scraps on 4 x 4 birch panels and usually are made in sets. Each set seems to tell a story after I complete them.  This set is called Immaculate Conception:

Immaculate Conception Four PanelsHere’s a set of abstract 4 x 4 panels called “Blue Lemons”

To take a look at other “Tiny Art” sets and singles for sale on my Etsy site, click HERE. Where could you enjoy some Tiny Abstract Art made from “designer” scraps?

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(“Dizzy Rose” can be seen while sitting on the Porcelain Throne in our powder room….)

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