Wordplay Wednesday: Word Collage




I am an unabashed word nerd. I love playing around with words in all kinds of ways: writing of course, but also Scrabble, anagrams, crossword puzzles, poetry, making up words and silly rhymes or songs and so on. When I can’t sleep instead of counting sheep, I choose a letter of the alphabet at random and try to think of as many words as I can that begin with that letter. Sometimes the fun of that actually keeps me awake, but usually it works after a while. Yep, I have it bad.


One of my favorite Wordplay activities is to create collages using words cut from magazines. I love all the different colors, sizes and fonts you can find. It makes my word nerd heart go pit-a-pat when I get a new magazine and see the potential for “word harvesting.”


When I was around 11 or 12 I started asking my grandmother for all of her old Good Housekeeping, Redbook and McCall’s magazines when she was finished reading them. I spent many afternoons sitting in my room listening to my 75 rpm singles or LPs on my record player while I cut out words I liked and placed them in envelopes.


Once I had a sizable collection I’d begin to pull words out and assemble them into free form-poetry, messages or imaginary stories. Sometimes I would group the words by color, or arrange them in spirals or waves and so on.  When I was finished I had a cool poster for my room. It was a great way to combine my love of words and my love of art.


So this week I am inviting you to play with words in a more tactile/kinesthetic way by making your own word collage. I will be doing this is well and posting my results on Friday.


Here’s how to get started:


~Grab some old magazines, catalogs or junk mail and begin tearing out pages that contain words or phrases that resonate with you due to the font, the color or the word itself. Don’t think too hard about it at this point.


~When you have a nice selection of pages, go through and cut out the words or phrases you like. Check the backs of pages as well. You may find some great words you didn’t notice the first time.


~Once you have a nice collection, begin playing around with the words to see what you can create. You might come up with a poem, a funny quip, or an inspirational saying that could be a greeting card or a small poster. You might string words together into crazy sentences that give you an idea for a story. Serendipity is a great muse!


~ Grab a glue stick and a piece card stock or computer paper and make your collage permanent.



Use certain kinds of words: Make an adjective, verb or synonym collage.

Create an art piece by arranging your words into a picture or design.

Add pictures from magazines or your own doodles or sketches to your words.



In other words, have fun with words! That’s what writing is all about, words having fun.



I will post my word collage creations on Friday.


Happy Wordplay Wednesday!