We continue our Q&A series with Christine Clemmensen of Copenhagen, Denmark. She's the co-author of Scraps: An Inspirational Field Guide to Collage.
What mediums did you use on the pages you submitted or what mediums do you primarily use?
I love using “old stuff”—maps, book pages, tickets, stamps—everything that comes with a story of its own. And then mold it by painting it over, tearing it apart and putting it together to tell a new story.
What do you do when you're blocked?
Usually I put the journal aside, but leave the spread lying open so I can see it when I pass by. Then I do something completely different—knit, sew, cook—and after a while new possibilities present themselves.
Other times I work on several pages at a time; I find this also helps the flow of creating. If one page is giving me a hard time, another might be more “cooperative”.
What artists do you look to for inspiration?
My big collage-hero is Poul Lange. His work balances delicacy and humour with such beauty!
But also Geninne Zlatkis, Rhed Fawell, Fred Free, Anahata Katkin and Gracia & Louise, just to mention a few.
What would you tell someone who's trying to get into art journaling or creating but doesn't know where to start?
First of all, I would encourage them to be brave with their materials, to not be afraid to use treasured paper scraps in their collages. I find that materials that have gained natural patina are so beautiful, and that these items add stories of lives lived, and character in a way a piece of paper fresh from the printers can’t.
I would also advice them to be less concerned with the outcome and the aesthetic, and more with the process.
What do you do to get over the blank page syndrome?
I mess the page up with something random; an ink or paint splash or a random piece of paper glued on, which means no more white paper to fear. And don't be afraid to do it "wrong"—this first move is seldom visible when the page is finished.
How did you first start art journaling or using a sketchbook?
I made collages for years, I even wrote a book about it, but I craved a more immediate way of collaging. About a year ago, I saw a sketchbook done in a very simple style. The book had no intended story, and the pages were not that thoroughly prepared. This inspired me so much! I still tend to load a lot on my pages, but I always try to find a way back to this place of the possibility of less.
You can find more of Christine’s art at christineclemmensen.blogspot.com.