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Mixed Media Art Guide

  • 2 min read

What Is Mixed Media?

Mixed media is a type of artwork that mixes different media or materials into one piece. For example, a piece of art that combines an acrylic painting with fabric and paper is mixed media art. You can use mixed media techniques for various crafting and art projects, such as scrapbooking, sketchbooks, or decorating greeting cards and mixed media art journals.

Mixed Media vs. Multimedia Art: What’s the Difference?

Mixed media art features different materials and artistic mediums in one singular piece, while multimedia art combines visual elements with interactive or non-visual elements such as sound, lights, or dance.


6 Types of Mixed Media Art

From found art in museums to scrapbooking, there are various types of mixed media art:

  1. Collage: A collage is a form of visual arts in which visual elements are combined to create a new image that conveys a message or idea. Collage comes from the French word “collér,” which means “to glue,” often the primary means of combining images in collage art. Collagers can draw these images from newspaper clippings or print advertisements, or cull them from different materials, like photographs, fabric, wood, and even ephemera. Collagers can apply the images to the surface of another work of art, such as a canvas, to create a new single image.
  2. Découpage: Découpage is a craft that involves gluing fabric or paper cutouts onto objects, then sealing the entire object to make it look painted. Découpage is a DIY way to decorate home items and upcycle old objects with new embellishments. You can découpage many surfaces, including wood, metal, glass, terra cotta, and even plastic. Furniture, vases, lampshades, picture frames, and glassware are popular household items to découpage.
  3. Assemblage: A 3D mixed media collage is called an assemblage, with various materials protruding in different directions.
  4. Found art: Found object art is when artists or crafters repurpose an ordinary or non-artistic object into an art piece.
  5. Book alteration: Book alteration is another form of mixed media in which an artist tears apart a book or physically alters it to create a collage or painting.
  6. Wet and dry media: This is when wet media (such as acrylic paint, watercolor, ink, or other liquid media) combine with dry media (oil pastels, graphite, crayon). An example is layering a pencil drawing on top of a painting.

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