Zinester’s Toolkit: Collage-spiration with Lisa Pijuan-Nomura

I am a collage artist based in Hamilton, ON.

It all started about 28 years ago when I fell in love with an old postcard. It was a cheesy image of two people kissing on the streets of Paris. I wondered what the world of these two was like, and dreamed of a life of love, travel, and art.

After that, I started collecting postcards. Soon, I was going to all the antique markets and picking up old books at garage sales. I liked the look and feel of them, and I loved the inscriptions in the margins:

“To Birdy, I love you dearly and always will.”

“Frances, may you enjoy these delightful stories on your 16th birthday.”

“Para mi amor, mi vida. 1942.”

I couldn’t stop thinking about those who had lived before me and written these messages. One day, I noticed that some of the pictures were falling apart and wondered what would happen if I used them for collage.

For two years I spent about two hours a day cutting and pasting. It was all going very well, and then suddenly things went bad.

Two years ago, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. And that sucked. Like, it sucked a lot.

When you are spending all of your energy going through treatment and getting better, you have no energy left at the end of the day. So collage stopped for about eight months. When I came back to creating, I didn’t quite know what to do. I wanted to lessen the pressure that I placed upon myself, so I started making what I call collage sketches. They are simple collages that I create in timed sessions. Just playing with paper. And slowly but surely I got back to creating.

Collagio is a zine about cutting and pasting, creativity, life and books. Each page has thoughts or quotes on them and they can be used as a prompt for your own paper playtimes.

Start with these simple prompts. 10 minutes a day.

How to Start a Collage

1. Start with an image that you love. 2. Pick three other elements.
3. Glue them down.
4. Have fun.
5. Listen to podcasts or your favourite music. 6. Once you are finished start again.

Collage Prompt #1

Late night thoughts make me giddy
Playing with paper
Abandoning all sorts of meaning
Just paper to paper.

Collage Prompt #3