So I'm sick and tired of receiving mail art in arranged swaps that relies almost 90% on purchased collage sheets. I love swapping ATCs and chunky-book pages, but frankly, they are supposed to be little pieces of art, not the same kind of collage we might've thrown together for a grade-school nutrition project by cutting up our mom's copies of Family Circle and Good Housekeeping.
I can't take it. I spend a lot of time on my collages--both in painting and distressing vintage book pages and paper towels for background elements, to locating just the right colors and papers to use, to having the best possible quotes or words or handwriting on my work, to using photographs that I own myself or that I spent at least some amount of time locating for myself. I worry about composition, layering, originality and whether or not the work has an overall statement to make. I create my own collage sheets to save on paper/color photocopying costs, but I don't go on etsy and buy someone else's sheets of crappy, overused, colorized vintage images of little girls in butterfly wings to make my art "easier."
Creating collage is not supposed to be about shortcuts and time-savers . . . it's still supposed to be art. I don't really know if there is any great amount of art involved in cutting images out of a three-dollar collage sheet and glue-sticking them onto a playing card.
I think this may be why I'm hand-drawing more stuff, because I am becoming a collage snob. And I don't like my collages lumped into the same category with collages that look like they came right off a production line.
ugh. Perhaps I just need a nap.