Monday, November 19, 2012

"The Illusionist"

Below is my newest collage that I have completed for my Metamorphosis series, titled The Illusionist. The Illusionist is my third finished piece of the series, and my second image executed in black and white.
(Click below to view larger scale)

The Illusionist
16in. x 20in. photo collage
Subjects : Common Tiger Butterflies
Model : Self

This is my first collage of the series where I specifically chose to use multiple insects in one image. There are a total of 4 Common Tiger Butterflies used to make up the entire "suit" around the female. I wanted this collage to appear more graphic and less literal than the previous two pieces. As you can tell from the dimensions above, this is currently my biggest piece to date (thanks to my gorgeous new Epson, I can print up to 17in x 22in!). I even attached a photo below to give a better idea of the scale of the image.

Images © Alexandra Bellissimo 2012.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

"The Antagonist"

I have completed my second piece for my Metamorphosis series, titled The Antagonist. (To view the first piece from this series titled The Observer, please click here.) As you can see below, this is my surreal interpretation of a half male/half scorpion hybrid.
(Click below to view larger scale)

The Antagonist
12in. x 16in. photo collage
Subject : Scorpion
Model : Max

I chose to work in black and white because I wanted to accentuate the sleek and glossy surface of the scorpion. I felt this use of B&W would help visually enhance the transition between the male figure and scorpion. When it came to the shooting portion of this collage, I was surprised by how difficult it was to execute. I knew the shiny surface of the insect would bring on challenges when it came to lighting it, but I was not expecting the scorpion to be so damn fragile. During the shoot, I started experimenting by placing the scorpion at various angles...until it literally started coming apart limb by limb. First a "claw" fell off...then the other...Luckily for me, I was fortunate enough to get the shots that I needed for this specific concept before I had to discard it. To give you a visual reference, here is the poor little guy below:

Images © Alexandra Bellissimo 2012.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

New Series - "Metamorphosis"!

I am beyond thrilled to share the very first collage I have completed for my new series titled, Metamorphosis. The image below is titled, The Observer
(Click the image below to view larger scale)

The Observer
12in. x 16in. photo collage
Subject : Owl Butterfly
Model : Self 

For the next several months I will be experimenting with merging the human form with a variety of unique looking insects ranging from butterflies, to beetles, to scorpions. All insects used in the Metamorphosis series are taxidermy insects that I have photographed myself. No outside stock images were used or manipulated. The detail shot below may give the viewer a better visual for the use of the "tiling effect" utilized in the collage. 

Images © Alexandra Bellissimo 2012.

Monday, September 17, 2012

"Simulations" Show!

Thank you everyone who made it out to my opening reception for my, "Simulations" show on Saturday (the 8th)! For those who were unable to make the opening night, the show will continue to run from now until October 27th at the Kopeikin Gallery in Culver City.

Also a huge thank you to Paul Kopeikin, Andy Freeberg,  FramePros (for making my custom frames look amazing), Cartwheel, Art Fumes, Los Angeles, I'm Yours, and everyone else who helped spread the word about my show! And of course a tremendous thank you to all my friends and family for their constant (and much needed) love and support.

Below are some photos taken during the opening reception: 

Monday, July 16, 2012

"SIMULATIONS" Show at the Kopeikin Gallery! +Art Fumes Feature!

I'm so thrilled to finally spread the word about my first show!...You will be able to see a collection of my original collages showcased at the Kopeikin Gallery this September! The show will run from September 8th through October 27th. You can click on the link below for more information on the gallery, and of course I will post further details closer to September.

More fantastic news...I was featured on! Art Fumes is an amazing blog I stumbled across somewhat recently that I would highly suggest you check out the blog for plenty of inspiring art/photography/etc.

Friday, June 1, 2012

"Appendage" + "Inhibit"

I hope everyone is doing well now that we have moved into June. I am pleased to say that there will be a site update coming up in the near future so I will make sure to keep everyone posted. I have to admit that the month of May was not as productive as I would have liked...but given certain circumstances, I wasn't able to finish as many collages as I would have liked. Nonetheless, I did complete the following two collages recently.

Appendage - photo collage 12" x 12"

When it came to making "Appendage" I was pleasantly surprised that it came together as well as it did. The real challenge of the piece was using Photoshop to seamlessly retouch my arm out before I printed the image and started physically collaging it together. When I look at the piece I feel as though the branch (in place of the arm) looks somewhat robotic...? Does anyone else agree?

Inhibit - photo collage 16.5" x 12"

I found "Inhibit" to be far more challenging to piece together than "Appendage" given that I've had difficulty working with cactus plants in the past. Their forms have so many ridges and curves that it adds a lot of extra shadows and depth, making them extremely difficult to merge onto the smooth surface of the human form. However, I am glad I decided not to scrap the piece altogether because I am very pleased with the results.

Friday, May 4, 2012

"Infringement 02" + "Preserve"

Happy Friday everyone! I didn’t get to post nearly as much as I would have liked to in April, so hopefully this month I can make up for that by posting 2 collages a week..? I'm also planning on updating after I finish a few more pieces to contribute to the “Simulations” series. By then I should have roughly around 10 new collages to add to the series grand total. Here are 2 pieces I have completed recently that also happen to be self portraits:

Infringement 02 - 15” x 12” photo collage

The image above is the second version of the original Infringement collage. The original collage tends to be a favorite among people, so I wanted to take it a step further by having the tree branches protruding out of the mouth versus the eyes. While comparing the two pieces, it's interesting to see what a difference the crop of the image makes to the final result of the piece. Below is another collage I finished recently titled, "Preserve".

Preserve - 13.8” x 11.8” photo collage

A few weeks ago I went to visit The Arboretum in Arcadia with my dad when I came across this intriguing "toog tree" seen in the image above. When I first saw the tree I was immediately fascinated by the sort of "web effect" the tiny pieces of bark made wrapped around the surface of the trunk. I figured the texture of the bark in contrast with the vibrant green in the vines looked more appealing in color versus black and white. It wasn’t until I had already been working on  the piece for a couple of hours that I decided to cut into the side to reveal more of the leg. I think it helps give the illusion that the trunk of the tree is enveloped around my lower half, instead of appearing as though they were simply glued on top of one another.

I hope everyone is having a good May so far, I'll make sure to post again next week.

Monday, April 9, 2012

"Breach" + Female Persuasion Feature!

Hope everyone's April is off to a good start! Here is my newest collage, "Breach":

I'm always looking for more ways to incorporate male figures into the "Simulations" series, so I was eager to work on this concept I've had in my sketchbook for quite some time now. Much like my collage "Infringement", I spent several, (and I mean several) hours cutting out tiny branches from an old photo I shot of a dead tree. I was going for an eerie and ominous vibe...I believe it works especially well with the use of black and white images. The measurements of this collage are 15 in x 12 in.

Last week my collage "Hollow" was featured on It's a virtual gallery focusing on "political and provocative female artists" so I am thrilled that they considered my work as such. It's a really fantastic site that features some pretty incredible work, so if you get a chance please visit {}!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

"Rooted 02" + 22 Magazine!

My question I have this week, as I always have at the end of every month, is where does the time go...?? Seriously, I never understood as a child why adults were always mourning about time passing by too quickly....until I graduated college. Now I feel as though it's going by too fast. Way, way too fast...But all lamenting aside, I finished another collage I'm pretty proud of!

The collage above titled "Rooted 02" is a continuation from a previous collage, "Rooted" (seen on my site). It is currently the biggest one I have completed at 17.6 in x 11.5 in. The figure in photo was shot on a white seamless to get a "clean" appearance, although I chose to work with a light amount of contrast in order to get a softer result. I can't wait to get this baby framed...(although I shudder to think about the cost).

I've been dying to get a feature on The 22 Magazine blog for a while now, so I was beyond thrilled when I got the email this week saying they would display my work on their blog. Just seeing the severely talented artists on their blog, (not to mention their online magazine!), is mind-blowing. Whether it's art, photography, poetry, video, etc., all the work featured on 22 Magazine is definitely worth checking out... {CLICK} for My Feature. {CLICK} for 22 Magazine.

I hope everyone has had a memorable March. Here's to even better days ahead in April!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

"Hollow" + New Features!

For those who didn't already know, I recently updated my site with 12 new collages added to the "Simulations" series. You can see the entire series thus far at Here is a look at my first collage I completed in March titled, "Hollow" (seen below).

"Hollow" was constructed somewhat larger then I usually make my collages, at 14" x 11.6". The image of the cave was taken recently at Vasquez Rocks. The image above doesn't quite show the 3 dimensional structure of the the collage so I took these snapshots below to show how the opening to the cave has more depth than it appears (I apologize for the low res photos, they were taken from my iPhone).

It's always an incredible feeling to be able to see my work featured on so many great art blogs along with a plethora of amazing artists and designers. I was recently featured on again (see below) where I was interviewed by Alice Yoo on the progression on the Simulations series. Click HERE for My Modern Met interview.

I was thrilled to see my work featured on a blog based in Madrid called, "Area Visual" which focuses on art, design, ilustration, photography, advertising, urban culture, new trends of web and any creative form of aesthetic expression. Click HERE for Area Visual link.

I was also featured on "Cultureneering" which is this awesome in-your-face type of blog (visiting the blog is entertaining in itself because you can change the background image every time you refresh the page). Click HERE for Cultureneering link.

Lastly, I came across "The English Group", a blog based in the UK that acts as a visual scrapbook showcasing all kinds of graphic design, art, books, magazines, film and music, photography, portraits, fashion...etc. Click HERE for The English Group link.

Monday, January 16, 2012

"Surface - 02"

Because it has been a real challenge making collages with new and unique concepts at such a rapid rate (although I'm sure a few collages a month doesn't seem quite rapid?), I have also been doing several variations of past collages to contribute to the "Simulations" series. See "Surface - 02"below:

The collage featured above is the second photo which I have utilized moss to create a textured "surface" around the subject. It's fascinating to see how the moss appears more like fur or even mud on my skin, where the contrasting colors on the original definitely make the moss an easier first read.

As you can tell by the snapshot above, the collage (seen here compared to my coffee cup) is actually a lot smaller than the past couple of a collages I have completed....(it is roughly 5 x 7"). It's a lot more difficult adhering the tiny pieces to the collage at this size but I actually prefer the smaller size photos to the standard sizes I usually do (typically 8 x 10"). It becomes more of an intimate experience when the viewer has to really get close to the image in order to appreciate the details in the layering and textures.

And here is an snapshot of the end result...Yep, that's a lot of left over scraps. Quite a paper massacre, right?

Friday, January 13, 2012

First 2012 Post - New Collage!

Happy new year everyone! I wanted to post up my newest collage titled "Euphoria", which is my 7th collage that I have completed since November. When I eventually complete 10 collages total, (which I plan on doing so by next week) I will post them all onto my website, and add them to the "Simulations" collage series. I'm looking forward to sprucing up my site for the new year!

I used my sister Madison as the model for "Euphoria". I reverted back to my old "tiling" technique for this collage because I wanted to create a juxtaposition between rigid cuts and layers with the soft subject matter in the photographs. If you can't tell by the scan above, the floating tile images are of dandelions. Lots and lots of dandelions.

I will keep everyone posted as to when the site gets updated!