Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Homestead Relics
24" x 40" x 1.5" paper collage on wood panel with found objects

 Detail of objects and view showing paper wrapped around sides. 

Here is some insight to the process I go through in making a piece like this.

Step 1, go through old family photos and do contour drawings of the outline of the house.  This can take around 1 hour or so till I settle on the shape I like. This is the new girls bunk house my grandfather built in Polson, MT.  I believe it was the old granary on the farm.

Step 2, research quilt patterns and find one that fits. This will take a 2-3 hours. I like the visual quality and meaning behind the friendship pattern selected for this piece.  The drawing is rough and leaves room for adaptation.

Step 3, It can take 2-3 hours to go through the collections I have and choose objects that I feel will work with the concept behind the piece. It is not easy to explain what I am searching for but I know when it feels right.

Step 4, draw and cut out the pattern on 1/8 inch panel using jig and band saw. Select the placing and size of compartment to hold chosen objects. Cut out the area. I can usually do this in 2 hours.

Step 5, create the cradle for the panel.  This takes around 4 hours to cut, fit and anchor each piece. 

Step 6, I will take about 2 hours to draw the layout for the quilt pattern.

Step 7, for this piece it took 12 hours to select the paper I wanted to use and cut it into the needed size and shape - It has to be accurate. I go through several exacto blades making sure they stay sharp.

Step 8, lay out the paper several times till the I know for sure the arrangement will work.  This took just over 1 hour.

Step 9, gluing down the paper on the pattern. For this piece, with the wrap around edge, it took 42 hours. It is tedious yet relaxing, I usually listen to a good book while I do this.

Step 10, seal the paper with a gel medium. This can take 1 hour.

Step 11, construct the box to hold the objects. Slats are cut to sub divide the area creating a separate compartment for each object. Because each object has a different thickness the back of each compartment is built up using scrap wood cut to size to bring each object to the surface of the plexi. Then it is filled with joint compound, sanded and painted. This box took 10 hours to complete.

Step 12, about 2 hours to cut the plexi and frame. Paint the frame and pre-drill for finish nails. and do the final assembly. Total time investment from beginning to end 80+ hours.

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