This is a collage mixed media piece, 11 x 15 inches, that I finished a couple months ago. I began by affixing torn pieces of magazine pages (using acrylic gel medium as glue) to 300 lb. Arches watercolor paper. (Gloss gel or mat gel, I forget.) I had already altered the bits of magazine paper by laying them over textures and lightly rubbing sandpaper over the magazine paper. I did not have an overall design in mind and let the work evolve. I studied the look of the bits I had laid down, then I began to integrate the pieces, repeating patterns and connecting sections with acrylic paints. I added a few more collage pieces when I felt those were needed. In places, I obscured the existing patterns of the magazine paper for the sake of creating repetition and an overall movement of color and line that satisfied me.
If you like to try out new methods of beginning an art piece, you might want to give this a go.