Color Pencil Figurative Study

Back in college I kept a few sketchbooks where I’d work on studies of various subjects. This color pencil drawing is from one of those sketchbooks, when I was studying different expressions for my upcoming series of collage portraits for my senior thesis. I was also playing around with different color schemes, which is why this is done with cool colors.

Still Life Oil Painting

Still Life Oil Painting by Megan Coyle

This still life oil painting is a piece that I made back in college during my freshman year. I made this back when I was studying painting in school, although I still worked on collages in my free time. I remember that this was made during a time when I was still learning the ins and outs of mixing and blending paint colors, so it isn’t as expressive as some of my other paintings.

In the Garden

“In the Garden” is a collage that I made back when I was in high school. It was made when I first started experimenting with collage. I had deemed the collage “finished,” and set it aside for some time. Then a couple of years later, when I was in college, I came across the collage and decided it wasn’t finished yet. So I proceeded to add in some more detailing with shadows and highlights, and then felt like it was closer to being “done.”

This might sound odd, but I never really feel like a work of art that I’m working on is ever finished. I simply give up on it after a certain amount of time. This is the only collage I’ve ever revisited after some time, however, I’m thinking it might be a good idea to start getting into the habit of reworking my older artwork.

Rebellion

Here’s a collage that I made back in high school, “Rebellion.” It was part of the series of collages I made at that time that really inspired the overall drive and direction of my work over the years. At that time, I was focussing on cutting and pasting paper while looking for solid colors and patterns in magazines. Then I manipulated the paper in such a way to create the shadows and highlights of the figure. I also remember that I really enjoyed cutting up the type that’s being used for the background here.

Running Water

This is a mixed media collage that I made back in high school, “Running Water.” I remember that I made this around the same time I started exploring the collage medium, and quickly grew to love it. This piece is a little more like a traditional collage since you can see distinct fragments that I cut from different magazine images. I also used acrylic paint and oil pastel along with the magazine clippings.

Myopic Landscape Painting from College

Back in college, I was a Painting Major. Here’s one of the pieces I completed during my freshman year – a myopic landscape. I remember I painted this piece while sitting outside on campus, and I really enjoyed using so many different colors for the reflection in the water. If you’ve seen some of my landscape collage work, you can really see how my work in painting translated over to collage.

The Beholder’s Eye

This is an acrylic self portrait that I made back in high school. For the background, I used thick layers of paint and then scraped away at the paint with a palette knife. I painted this portrait a little bit after the first self portrait painting that I made when going through a program at a local gallery.

Reflective Still Life Study 2

Reflective oil painting by Megan Coyle

I studied painting in college, and this is a piece that I made that was part of an oil painting series that depicted reflective surfaces. I remember really enjoying the process when I was working on this particular painting, it sort of fell together, while my other reflective paintings were more of a struggle.

I feel like still life was something I always dreaded in school. The compositions in real life that we worked from seemed boring to me – not as exciting as figurative work. The struggle was finding inspiration in old objects that were fished out of the teacher’s closet and strewn about in such a way to create interest for the entire class. Nowadays when I tackle still life, I like to work from reference photos of interesting food and drinks that I’ve seen (or eaten) on various trips.

Self Portrait Drawing from High School

Megan Coyle self portrait she made in high school

This is a graphite self portrait drawing that I did back in high school – I think I was around 16 at the time that I made this. I remember that I had a mentor at a local gallery back then, an artist who gave me feedback on a few of my works of art. This portrait was made during the mentorship program, and the last piece I created during the program was this self portrait painting.

In general, I think that self portraits are really difficult to do. It’s really tough to portray yourself, especially since we have so many assumptions about how we look based on the everyday routine of looking in the mirror. It’s difficult to take a step back and peer at yourself like an outsider in order to create a portrait. As a result, I feel like most of my self portraits don’t entirely capture the way I look, however I do like to refer to them as portraits that are version of myself.

Writer’s Block

Writer's Block by collage artist Megan Coyle

This is a mixed media collage that I made back in high school – can you tell that I may have been inspired by Picasso at the time? Growing up, I was an aspiring writer. I was constantly scribbling poetry and stories in spiral notebooks, so it was only fitting that I made a work of art inspired by my life as a writer. This piece is made of magazine clippings, oil pastel, pen, and includes an actual broken pencil and balled up piece of paper adhered to the surface.