Nautical Collage | A Mixed Media Project


I know I have said time and again, that I don't care for blue or white, but in designing, personal taste depends upon the project. Besides, who can say no to nautical!

This is my latest mixed media design, my Nautical Collage! What do you think? (Check out this post to see "ground level" pictures of the design.)

While looking for a good frame for my Sweet Vintage Carousel, I saw this collage and at the same time remembered three quotes I had ran across that really inspired me. It just kind of fit to use them with this collage. It was easy-peasy. That part, at least. It took me a while to figure out what kind of theme to use.

(Keep reading for details on where you can purchase your own Nautical Collage!)


I make quick sketches of all my ideas, the one's that I am seriously interested in making, so that I don't forget them. Why is that so important? There are times when I am working on one project and have a handful of ideas all at once. Then the roller-coaster of life goes down and I don't have any ideas for a long time. I don't rely on my memory when that happens or I would feel totally bogged down trying to keep track of everything. It's kind of like the art of brain dumping, getting it all out on paper to see so that you don't have to keep it organized in your mind. It frees my mind up immensely.

I don't take much care in neatness when I sketch --my main priority is getting the main idea and details down that I might not remember at a later date. But then of course, that's what a sketch is.


I played around with my paper, tried this and that, but wasn't satisfied until I came to my nautical book of paper. The middle one with the gold anchors was immediately my favorite when I first got the book! I have been dying for a chance to use it, but naturally, it has to be the perfect thing. This was it. I found a couple of contrasting patterns from the same book and went to work.

I sized up the paper choices to the frame I had and found out something very important: the inexpensive frame was not at all even. I had cut out three 3x5 rectangles but when putting them in the frame, found that the bottom box was bigger and the top smaller. Here is a prime example, people, why it is a good idea to invest in better quality materials.


Anyhow, I was able to work through this. I cut a long rectangle from the large sheet of paperboard I had to work as a foundation for my featured rectangles and then lined them up to the frame.

Next came the quotes. I spent some time in Gimp trying to get some satisfactory templates for my quotes. As usual, it took me some time and playing with until I could be satisfied. In the end I reprinted the quotes twice and found a gold Sharpie to be the finishing touch. Don't look to closely or you'll see inconsistencies in the outline. But then again, if you do see inconsistencies in the outline, let me remind you that this is handmade. That's at least my defense.


My biggest hangup, however, was the center box. What to put in the center box? I had already concluded that it needed to be something different from a quote, but what kind of center piece would highlight the picture while having the same feeling? I found the gold-lined ship's wheel in the book as well --I cut it out of a picture. It was the perfect thing! A balance between white on blue, and blue on white, outlined in gold. Needless to say, I was pleased.


Don't those gold anchors just make the picture?!

Okay, so I am a sucker for gold... and anchors.


Switching gears from design to meaning, this quote is simple but very deep. "Answer to the Rudder, or answer to the Rocks." I was reading The Journals of Jim Elliot and he noted these maxims himself. Always an attentive student of Elliot's, I took them to heart as well. This Scottish proverb has a lot to teach this modern society. Think about it for a moment.

I have been working on this piece for a few weeks now, and I realize that I haven't really considered the true meaning during that time. Oh, I considered them when I first read them, but after selecting them for my piece I really haven't take the time to meditate on their meaning. How one-sided a mind can get.


I remember being impressed by this one from Elliot many, many years ago. It is so meaningful. In our society where there are so many distractions, so much sensationalism and inspiration all at once, it is easy to find yourself divided.

Take for instance, your phones. How many times have you gone somewhere with family or friends and spent most of it on your phone texting another friend? You're definitely not all there with them.

Another example is our temporary focus. All the demands of life that pull us to and fro. If it's not our technology distracting us from the moment, there are a million and one things running through our minds, things to do when we get home, things to do after this game or conversation, things to remember to do Monday, etc. What would it be like to "live to the hilt every situation"?

And what about our long term focus? Translated, are we content with where we are in life? This is a hard one. Stages of our life that seem unproductive leave us wondering what life might be like once we can get that one job, or acquire that one thing that will change our life's direction. I myself have spent many frustrated hours asking God what He wants for my life, why He won't provide that one thing that I know is His will? God has had to teach me that if He hasn't lead me anywhere else yet, then this must be where he wants me now.

It's a hard thing to learn. But in light of that, we have the responsibility to live our lives to the hilt. Make the most of every moment and situation. Be truly content now, or you won't find contentment later.

Obviously, I love these quotes.


So what do you think? Do you like my latest project? I'd love to hear from you! Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

I have added this latest piece to my shop, Ginger Peachy Store on Etsy! I almost always keep the original, so when you order from me, I make the item just for you!

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