What are these strange and silly pictures?

The images I’ve posted here are built from old comic books, some free-use fonts, and a couple other scans and findings. I have a resource stack of many out-of-copyright books that I’m practicing on. I’m gathering other sources now too, with a goal of creating something new from many disparate elements.

Street view of Phoenix AZ

Street view of Phoenix AZ

I’ve worked in collage pretty regularly since college (pun not intended). Some people think of collage as nothing more than stealing other creators images and sticking them together. It isn’t an opinion I share, and I do know there is a fine line between just appropriating someone’s work, and creating something new from it. I hope readers of this will see me creating lots of new things over time. These early pieces in particular are admittedly mostly juxtapositions as I play with ideas, build vocabulary, and see what works and what doesn’t.

Collage, post-2000. Copyright JRC

Collage, post-2000. Copyright JRC

If I can locate them, I’ll post some of my older student works and perhaps some flyers I’ve made over the years just to show where I’ve been. I also intend to post pictures of other creators’ works that I like, and some discussion about process and techniques that influence me, and I use.

Off the top of my head and in no order, here are the names some artists whose works have made an impression on me over the years:
Man Ray
Barbara Kruger
Philip Guston
Frank O’Hara
Henry Darger
Joseph Cornell
Jenny Holzer
GW Pabst
Jay DeFeo
Spalding Gray
David Lynch
Chris Onstad
Nancy Liang (I just discovered her gifs and illustrations, which are amazing and delightful)

. . . and I could go on. It is an eclectic list, but also I don’t think it is anything radical or out of this world. May Ray and David Lynch are well known outside the fine art circles and part of contemporary canon, and the rest have staked out at significant prominence in their fields too. Each name above has at least one external link to it, they are the best I could find, but it is sad that all of these great talents (alive or dead) don’t have a better presence online.

I’ll post more musings and this list will grow. I think the better a reader can understand my thought processes and where my influences are, the clearer the intentions of my finished works will be. It’ll make me think harder about the creative choices I’m making, and at the very least build a richer discussion that leads to more ideas.


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