The collage art on the cover of The Call to Shakabaz was created by the author using a very simple technique. Students can create fantasy landscapes of their own using the same technique as described here.



8-1/2 x 11 piece of cardboard (as found at the back of paper pads)

white copy paper

tissue paper in assorted colors (color variety packs available through craft stores)

Elmer’s glue

paper cups


¼” tip paint brushes

2” paint brushes





Lay newspaper on the table underneath the project to protect the table. Mix Elmer’s glue with water in a paper cup @ 1 part glue to 6 parts water. Brush the glue water mixture onto the cardboard with a 2” paint brush and lay the white paper onto the cardboard to completely cover the cardboard. Tear and/or cut tissue paper into shapes and strips as desired and apply them in layers on the paper using the smaller (¼” tip) paintbrush. Even after the collage dries, you can go back in to add more paper and change the picture.


If you scan the final picture into the computer, students who use Adobe Photoshop and other art programs will be able to lay additional graphics or words over the picture. Perhaps students would like to design their own book covers, building on their landscape. If you scan the landscapes into the computer, please email me a copy at because I would love to see what your students create!