I recently joined the Hands and Heart ning group, and there is such a wealth of good information, tutorials, art discussion groups and just good people over there. I encourage you to go check it out here if you are interested in mixed media art.
One of the groups on the site is Artful Recycling. There's been a lot of good discussion about how to recycle materials such as cardboard, old cassette tapes, coasters, etc. by turning these things into art. I love the fact that this is a "green" way to create as well as the challenge aspect of stretching the imagination to figure out how to incorporate various materials into my art. Also, I find this to be extremely thrifty because cutting a piece of cardboard out of a trash box is a whole lot cheaper than buying a new canvas.
I wanted to share some photos of the pieces I've done using materials that were destined for the trash can. These are all on cardboard from old cereal boxes, etc. and they are all approximately 4"x12" (ish). Some of the other materials I used include old phone book pages, scraps of scrapbook paper that I dug out of my art room trash can, candy wrappers, old styrofoam which was used to give embellishments some dimension, acrylic paint (of course), old maps, and various embellishments I've had lying around for a while. I hope to keep creating these so that I can have enough to use for trades for next year's Art and Soul in Virginia.
Have a great weekend all!!