Free Collage Sheet

I am a lover of vintage and antique images. I use them in my digital art collages and in my jewelry.  I have been putting together a collection of public domain images on my blog, which you can find on the menu bar above. I have also been slowly adding a collection of postcards that I made in Photoshop, which are free to print out for your personal arts, crafts, scrap-booking, collage, and whatever else you can think of. I know that it can be a daunting task to find images, and I decided to start posting some small collage sheet images that are free to use. However, these images may not be resold as collage sheets or images. If you choose to incorporate them into you original work this is fine by me. I designed this grouping in Photoshop using vintage ephemera, photographs, and fabric. Enjoy!

Free Collage Sheet

The Butterfly

“What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls a butterfly.” …Richard Bach

I have loved butterflies for as long as I can remember. Of course they are beautiful, which is perhaps why I am drawn to them, but my obsession was born out of my marvel for them. Butterflies are a miracle of creation and absolutely amazing. In Sharman Russell’s book, An Obsession with Butterflies, the true genius of butterflies is revealed. During metamorphosis, the once homely caterpillar transforms himself into a beautiful butterfly. Besides the obvious change in appearance, the caterpillar also obtains the incredible power of flight. This new found power enables butterflies to instinctually fly thousands of miles to avoid a cold winter.  The idea of being one thing and becoming another is embedded in the human psyche. As human beings, we are always trying to reinvent ourselves. Often times it is a dream just out of reach, but there are always those stories of the healed, transformed, or suddenly enlightened ones. It is these stories or dreams that keep people like me coming back for more.

The image below is made out of vintage ephemera and public domain images. It is free to use for your personal art projects. (However, it can not be resold for any purpose.) Right click and print a 4×4 post card.

Free Printable Butterfly Post Card

The idea of reincarnation was formed when the Hindu god, Brahma, watched pupae turn into butterflies. In the Greek language, the word “psyche” means butterfly and soul. In ancient Egyptian tombs, there are images of butterflies covering the walls. In 1680, in Ireland, people were banned from killing white butterflies, because they believed they carried the souls of children. In the 1990’s, white butterflies were found in the prison cells of Chinese convicts who had converted to Buddhism before they were condemned to die. What a romantic notation, the soul being carried from this life to the next by a single white butterfly. Farfetched, maybe, but today I choose to live in the magic.

(Russell, Sharman. An Obsession with Butterflies. Massachusetts:Perseus, 2003.)

The Vintage Graphic Black and White Butterfly Necklace below is for sale on my Etsy site.

The Beetle

“In the eyes of its mother, every beetle is a gazelle.”
. . . Moroccan Proverb

Over the last year or so, I have become increasingly drawn to images of beetles. Their ingeniously designed bodies are a marvel to observe. So I did a little digging and found out that people who lived long before me have also taken notice of the beetle. In The Book of Symbols, one of the most popular beetles is said to be the “sacred scarab” of Egypt. This sacred beetle is also called the dung beetle and is known for rolling balls of dung and storing them underground for food and a storage house for their eggs. In ancient Egyptian mythology, the god Khepri is often depicted with the head of a beetle. He is thought to be responsible for leading the sun out of the dark underworld. Khepri is able to transcend the darkness and bring about a sort of rebirth, which is manifested as the rising sun. Just as the sacred beetle pushes a ball of dung, so too did Khepri push the sun out into the world. The name Khepri means “to take shape” or “come into being.” Today, the beetle is still regarded as a bringer of light and change.

(Archive for Research in Archetypal Symbolism. The book of Symbols. Germany, 2010.)

The necklace below is for sale at my Etsy store.

The collage below uses a variety of techniques and materials. The images are transferred using contact paper and iron on transparencies. I adhered the images using a combination of liquid mediums, sewing machine, and hand stitching. The piece is made on unprimed, rolled canvas that is painted and textured.