Photo Collage Drawings/Paintings

by Peter Keefer

Each piece in this series of photo collage drawings begins with a group of photographs of a particular subject. I choose industrial subject matter for the most part to show the aging of the infrastructure and to allow me to introduce make-believe forms and shapes as I get further away from the photographs.

By taking several photographs at one time, the curvature of the camera lens provides me with a distorted perspective of the subject. My use of a 210 millimeter lens also adds a certain amount of depth distortion. After the photographs are white-glued down on a 30″ x 44″ piece of paper, the distortion then suggests how to use my drawing to further change the perspective.

The drawing is done with a combination of pencil, oil pastel, lithographic ink and turpentine wash. I use a fixative to preserve the photographs, and after drying for a week,  a final coat of gel medium is applied to both fix the drawing and to enhance the overall sense of depth.

In the drawing, it is also more interesting to do the mechanical shapes by leaving out a central photograph and replacing it with drawn elements. The result is a recognizable image that, with scrutiny, is skewed by the contiguous drawing that surrounds it.