Lifelong Friends Assemblage

Lifelong Friends Assemblage2017-12-27T11:23:07-05:00

Project Description

Lifelong Friends Assemblage

About a month ago, I used a photo stamp for the first time – Senior Ladies 3 1/2″ x 4 3/4″ (#8671) from Viva Las Vegastamps! – and created a card. Every time I looked at the stamp I imagined more and more about the two ladies it shows, sitting outside, side-by-side….

Senior Ladies (#8671) from Viva Las Vegastamps!…They’ve known each other for many, many years. Perhaps they even knew each other before they emigrated from England to the United States. They played games together, like cards and BINGO. They shared jewelry. They had keys to each other’s homes. Handmade lace doilies were on their coffee tables and the arms of their sofas. Every conversation of importance happened over a pot of tea. They went to church together. They gardened. They met each other in the park to feed seeds to birds. They took their first airplane ride together. They shared many memories. They’re best friends forever (BFF)…

I looked through all the odds and ends I’ve collected and started to pull pieces together to tell their story. The result is this assemblage. If you look closely, you’ll see the music for Jesus Calls, the definition of move taken from an old dictionary, a small bottle of bird seed, stamps of the Queen of England and the Statue of Liberty, an airplane propeller, lace, pearls, a button and more. Maybe you can even piece together your own story about these two characters from what you see.

Here’s how built this piece:

1. Paint an 8″x8″ Studio Flat Panel artist board with Wheat Perfect Pigments™ – Pure Liquid Acrylics™ from USArtQuest.

2. Collage a background on the panel using Perfect Paper Adhesive – Matte (PPA) and bits of music, dictionary pages, napkins, stamps and paper doilies. I sprinkled a little Crystal Effectz™ on the area with the bird and music while the PPA was still wet to give the piece a little sparkle.

3. Tear a piece of corrugated cardboard into a rough square and then tear off part of the top layer, revealing the corrugated folds. Apply Rust and Whitewash Perfect Glazes™ to highlight some of the folds. Attach this to the base using  101 Artist’s Cement.

4. Continue building up layers by attaching ephemera and found objects to the base and corrugated cardboard with 101 Artist’s Cement. It will adhere most any object to any surface!

5. Stamp and distress the  Senior Ladies 3 1/2″ x 4 3/4″ (#8671) image on glossy paper. Attach the image to the corrugated cardboard using foam strips or pop-dots.

6. Cover a portion of the image with a mica tile using a metal tag (e.g., “Memories”).

Last year I took a mixed media class and the instructor told of how the piece “speaks to her” when she is creating it. Up until this project, I didn’t really understand what she meant. Now I think I have a much better idea. These “Senior Ladies” had lots to say and this project only begins to tell their story.

I hope you’ll consider telling a story with your found objects!

USArtQuest 2012 Design TeamYou’ll find lots of amazing projects on the USArtQuest blog. I hope you’ll take a minute to check out what the Design Team has been up to.

Happy Crafting!



  1. Shirley Wheeler February 8, 2012 at 7:49 pm - Reply

    I have to really do something like this! What an wonderful piece of art work! You are the master! :0)

  2. Robert Rosendale February 8, 2012 at 8:19 pm - Reply

    Love the Story as well as the visual one.

  3. Sandra Strait February 9, 2012 at 6:43 am - Reply

    What an amazing work–both the story and the collage. Now this could be the start of an amazing book of writing prompts, as well as a coffee-table book extraordinaire!

    • Joe Rotella February 9, 2012 at 6:51 am - Reply

      Hi Sandra! I really appreciate your comment! Writing prompts… hmm.. I've never thought of that! Great idea!!

  4. lyneen February 12, 2012 at 8:40 pm - Reply

    I love this assemblage… the stamped image is perfect for it!!

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