One of my little collaged paintings
I am on the road tomorrow morning, early. I love beginning a long drive before the sun is fully up, then watching the sky change color as the morning sun emerges onto the landscape.
When I travel, I like to bring along a portable "art kit". I have one my friend Lois made for me. It is currently back at her shop for repair, so frequently have I traveled with it. That little bag, which has a top flap and measures, closed, probably 6" x 9", has been to Mexico six times, all over the west coast of Ireland, the beach in Florida half a dozen times, and numerous other places.
It holds a small watercolor paper block, paintbrushes with built in water containers, transfer pens, collage papers, drawing pencils, a small tin of watercolor crayons, small pair of scissors, a pencil sharpener, small pieces of fine sandpaper stapled to a piece of matboard, a wax resist crayon, small container of "yes!" glue, and several other things I can't remember without my list.
Oil pastel and watercolor collage, sketched while sitting on a beach in Mexico
Yes, I have a list. I teach a class called Trains, Planes and Automobiles: Techniques for Traveling Collage, so I really need to practice what I preach. Be prepared for art. Any place, anytime. I encourage my students to plan ahead for creative work while traveling, and to make a list of their favorite art supplies, so they can figure out a way to travel with at least some of them. As for me, I try not to go anywhere without a least a journal and some collage materials. I am a "found object" junkie. Often, bits of ephermera I find during my travels go directly onto a matboard collage surface, or into a composition in one of my journals.
My favorite journal, which is all but full, is one I handmade years ago. It has a hand bound Japanese stab stitch binding, is thick and full of a great weight cardstock. It is full of writings, collage, and on-the-fly experiments, like, what would happen if I iron this photo transfer onto that oil pastel covered photograph? Cool! It works!!
I covered the open spine with folded playing cards prior to stitching the covers in place. In addition to being colorful and pretty to look at, they serve as spacers for the journal pages. That way, when I want to add junk I find that has some dimension to is, it doesn't prevent the journal from still laying flat.