Current Shows

Due to the Corona virus, the Surface Design workshop has been postponed until this summer. The new date for it will be announced when the Art House re-opens.


I'll be teaching this one-day workshop on March 14, 2020 at the Art House! Learn to design your own unique papers and other materials for collage, card making, scrap booking, journal making etc. I supply all the materials. All you need to bring is a sack lunch and a beverage. Hours are 10-4; fee is $90 per person. Register online at or call 678-543-5777. Act now! Seating is limited!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

From Complex to Minimal: When Art Takes a Right Hand Turn

Taking an online workshop is a new adventure for me. The one I'm currently taking with Jane Davies on monoprinting with the Gelli plate and collage has been extremely interesting and informative. I don't have to park myself in front of the computer at a specific time; I can watch the video for each lesson, read over the instructions, and complete the exercises whenever it suits me. Which is certainly helpful, since I seem to be spending more time at doctors appointments nowadays than I ever thought possible.

One of the exercises requires us to use only a handful of very simple shapes -- square and rectangles -- that combine collage elements plus prints made on the Gelli plate. Jane's instructions were to leave plenty of white space while adhering to a grid format for the placement of the prints and collaged papers..

Now, leaving plenty of white space is not in my nature. I subscribe to the "more is more" school of thought. I adore complexity and pattern in my art and that of everyone else. So when I was challenged by Jane to create a minimum of six of these minimalist pieces, I was a bit put off. At first, anyway.

©2016 Lynn Edwards

©2016 Lynn Edwards

©2016 Lynn Edwards

As I proceeded to complete the exercise, I was reminded once again that simplicity can be a very good thing. I actually liked the results I was getting! The three pieces above are my favorites out of the half dozen I created.

Jane had urged us to not worry about composition, but instead to concentrate on the purpose of the lesson, which was to become familiar with the effects of applying a printed shape over a piece of collage, and vice versa.

Being a longtime collage artist I was pretty well versed in those things, but it had been ages since I had deliberately chosen to work with a bare bones, pared down, totally simple design. As I began creating each small collage, I found myself appreciating the white space more and more. By the time I finished the sixth piece, I had become entranced with it. "Going Zen" was like enjoying an unexpected, sudden breath of fresh air in a stuffy, overheated room. It was liberating, exhilarating even!

Sometimes it's good to get a wakeup call. I plan to heed this one by creating work that's less complex and less complicated in the future. But I don't plan to abandon complexity altogether. Instead I'll let this lesson inform my future pieces and see where it takes them. Already I'm eager to see what new discoveries there are to be made. That's just another facet of the excitement to be found working in mixed media and collage.

Text and images ©2016 Lynn Edwards


  1. These are beautiful, Lynn! I love lots of white space too. So restful.

  2. Thanks, Molly! They sure were fun to do!