Oh, the wonderful land of travelling…could there be anything more exciting and fulfilling than experiencing new places with their often strange and wondrous sights, smells, sounds and tastes? The allure of foreign languages, architecture, plants, animals, music, art, culture and history – and of course people whose different way of living makes you smile and sometimes cry about the beauty and wonder of this earth? I love how travelling and experiencing new places ignite my inspiration to start new creative projects.
For years I have had the habit of collecting bits and pieces of ephemera (outing myself as a collage artist par excellence) from my trips as a form of tangible “travel memory” instead of buying any particular souvenir from the tourist shops: entrance receipts for magnificent ancient buildings, the ticket from the local bus ride to a secluded beach or a village in the mountains, a vintage postcard from the beachfront as it looked in 1960, a map of the ancient town, a paper napkin or sugar sachet from the little café at the corner with the yellow and orange painted wooden stools…
So here I am, having recently returned from a magical trip to Greece. In front of me, sitting on my desk is a pile of postcards, travel notes and a paper bag full of…well, paper trash, you would most likely throw away; but I feel that the essence of all my experiences, the energy of the places I visited and which I am already starting to miss, is somehow still alive in all those bits and pieces.
And so, I open my travel journal and start taking all those pieces and make a visual “summary” in the form of a paper collage. With each piece that I hold in my hands a different memory brings a smile to my face as I watch a mosaic of words and images, colors and shapes start to take form in front of my eyes. These fragments of memories and impressions are reborn in a new image that is uniquely my own and more precious to me than any tourist souvenir could ever be.
Maybe this inspires you to collect some items on your next trip and to use them to create your own unique travel collage when you return home and find yourself fighting those post-holiday blues?
In case you just got home from a trip and did not keep any items to make a collage, I have a different idea for you: think about the color or texture that you most associate with the place you just visited. Then grab some paint and paper and make a collage with the color and/or texture as your main theme. Each time you look at your collage you will be transported back to that amazing time and place.
An array of bits and pieces…
…turns into a collage
Add some paint, et voilà
A finished collage for my travel journal.
For more tips and inspiration join my online community on Facebook or check out my in-person collage and art journaling workshops here.
Happy Travels and lots of blessings from my studio,