I’ve tried to draw & I’ve tried to paint. I took piano lessons & voice lessons as a kid. I started college as an English/photography double major, but no artistic talent seemed to really be my area except words. I dropped the photography & finished college with the English major and I’ve worked ever since as a children’s librarian — words are still my best friends, my true love. But then I finally, finally discovered my own way of participating in the alluring world of images… through scissors & glue!
Magazines have always frustrated me in their format (I prefer books to articles), but that’s never stopped me from being drawn to them. They’re beautiful in form: slim, glossy, & smooth; and they’re full of gorgeous colors, lines, shapes, patterns, textures, fonts, phrases, and tiny little moments. Magazines are designed to be flipped through, read, or pored over, but that simply isn’t how I enjoy them most. I know, because I tried it that way for years! When I finally let my frustration guide me to a solution, the release was an all-day extravaganza of cutting out the things that called to me, setting them free from their pages, and then re-making them into a new whole: something I could hang on the wall and see all at once. No page flipping required.
Every Merriam Frank piece is composed of images hand-cut & shaped from the pages of recycled magazines, then arranged & rearranged & rearranged some more onto re-purposed pieces of cardboard. The final composition is then glued down & finally, glued over to seal and finish off the piece with brushstrokes.