Colour Studies and Collages

After the completion of one of my more complicated compositions, such as Passage of Arms or Roofwork, (both 1979), I sometimes made a collage that told the story of its making. Typically, this featured selected frames from my contact strips together with some of the working prints derived from them. (I printed light and dark versions to provide myself with a range of tonal information). A tracing showed elements of the composition in outline while a colour study indicated tone and colour. My colour mixes for use in the painting’s later stages appeared like a ‘medal ribbon’ at the base of the collage.

To give it some presence as an object, (and having in mind the beautiful ‘assemblages’ of Joseph Cornell) I presented the collage in a shallow box. I treated some other less complex compositions in a similar way. (The Illustrated Man 1979, Stooping Bather 1980 and Bathers with Yellow Towels 1980).

The photo collage of Prudence Cuming Associates 1985 was my gift to the firm.

© Michael Leonard