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  • Annette Dawm

Dallas Smith Design Contest Entries


Hello! I wanted to start this post by saying that prior to the flood on Sunday, I created a new photography page that I am very excited about. When I first started this website I wanted to show the progression of my photos from 2014 until now. I divided the photos into three categories: Concerts and Events, Objects and Empty Spaces and Critters and Cool People. It took a long time to sort these out and an even longer time to upload them. When I started doing blogs and other projects, the photography page got neglected and soon we were well into 2017 and I hadn’t put anything on the website from 2016. I think I took more photos last year than any other year because of Country Music Week and all of those photos were already on Facebook. Plus, I have been taking a photo every day since 2014 and each year I make a book so everything is already online! (You can click on my "Books" page.) So I scrapped my old photography page and category ideas in order to show the best photos of every month. I only have January done so far, but there are lots of interesting photos including ones of Scott Helman, Tim Hicks and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Aside from photography and writing I really enjoy making art which explains why I am not a math person. A few weeks ago, I saw that country artist/former Default front-man, Dallas Smith is having a contest to design something for his merchandise. Around the same time, I ordered some water colour brush pens which I am anxious to try out. However by the time they arrive, the contest might be over.

So, I put the contest in the back of my mind and carried on with one of my ongoing projects which is a series of collages to put on the wall by my front door. It’s a slow process. I need to make at least 64 collages and altogether I will use anywhere between 1200-1600 items. I’m going to be awhile but I’ve already “unhoarded” over 300 items. The sad part is I’m always finding more things to cut out or save and the majority of them could have been ruined in the flood.

The main 64 collages are made on 12x12” pieces of paper and then I will have to make smaller ones to fit the narrow parts of the wall. Usually my goal is to cover every spot on the paper, but some of the scrapbook papers that I have are too nice to cover, so I sometimes leave a portion untouched. This is really a challenge for me since I want to use as many things as possible. With my most recent collage, the page had a bird on a bicycle and a lot of different textures like lined paper, a floral design and a ruler which didn’t make sense to me, but it looked nice anyway, so I tried to work around these areas.

As I filled up the “safe” area, I started to realize that if I used Photoshop I could change a lot of things to incorporate Dallas Smith. It’s probably not something he’s looking for, but I enjoyed it. I have always wanted to do a breakdown of a collage and show how I did it, but this is a little different because things were digitally added or removed. I will try my best to explain it.

First, my collage was too big for my scanner so I scanned half of it and then the other half in hopes that I could merge them on the computer to make it whole again. It didn’t work out perfectly but once I fixed it up it was hard to tell they were not all one picture.




As you can see, this art had nothing to do with Dallas Smith and Tom Sawyer is obviously copyrighted so a lot of things would have to change. I try really hard not to buy items for my wall but this book cover had been converted to a postcard and it said, “Buy me!” I think it was $5 which is more than the price listed on the book, but I knew I wouldn’t find something like that again. By the third photo you can see I already added the newspaper pattern around the bike and took my name off. I also removed the AFLAC Duck from the wedding photo and the word "bookmark" from the bookmark. I like to do things in pairs, so I liked how a book and a bookmark were together.

I wanted to have as many Dallas Smith references as possible, so I changed the name of the book and started to add things related to the Side Effects album, including the song, "Kids with Cars". On the original collage, I had a "Save the Date" for London's "VegFest". Although I'm sure Dallas is a healthy eater, this wasn't doing it for me. So instead of the carrot, I have a Volkswagen Beetle that says "Side Effects" and the day that the CD came out. I found a royalty free website for the background that covers the vegetables as well as the other old car but I modified them.


This still wasn't Dallas-y enough.


I really liked using the recipe card for the "Autograph" lyrics because the lady underneath was missing an arm, so this closed the gap. On my original page I am going to write a quote on a recipe card and glue it there. (Remember, all the changes I'm showing you were digitally added.)

After all this work, I still wasn't satisfied but I was really drawn to the Beetle so I made this logo which took all of 5 minutes as opposed to 4 or 5 hours (not counting the time it took to make the original collage). If you think any of these designs are worthy of a Dallas Smith t-shirt then you can follow me on Instagram @annettedawm and give them a like. Thanks!



© 2020 By Annette Dawm