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Sunday, January 20, 2013

Tutorial - Image Transfer onto Sticky-Back Canvas

The floral "tape" at top is image-transferred onto sticky-back canvas.


Someone asked me how I do this, and while I was typing out the instructions I thought I'd post them here as well.   There are two methods I use, so I'll list them both.  Keep in mind that an image transfer is meant to be imperfect -- it has the look of an aged and tattered image.

The first method requires sticky-back canvas and an image.  Laser or toner-printed photocopies work well (remember to print in reverse if image includes writing);  or you can use a magazine image (I use images from old copies of Somerset or CPS) or  even pieces of scrapbook paper.  Claudine Hellmuth makes sticky-back canvas.

Cut the canvas to whatever size you wish. Remove the adhesive backing.  Press the image, print/image side down, onto the sticky side of the canvas.  Use a bone folder or other object to burnish (or press) all parts of the image firmly onto the canvas.  Now that you have the image down, it's time for the transfer.

Use a spray bottle to wet the top of the paper, then rub the surface with your fingers until pieces of the paper start coming off, at which point your image will be revealed. This step takes patience and is a little messy, but fun.  Be careful not to rub too hard as this can remove your transfer altogether. Continue until all the paper is removed and the image is completely visible/

The second method uses gel medium.  In this method, you are transferring the image to the right side of the canvas, preserving the adhesive side. You'll need the same materials as above, along with gel medium and a paint brush.  (Liquitex or Golden are the two gel mediums I've used.)    Completely cover your canvas with gel medium, using a medium coat. (This is something to experiment with.  Too light and the image won't transfer; too heavy and it will become blurred.)   Burnish the image onto the canvas and allow to dry for several hours or overnight.

After your image is completely dry, use a spray bottle to wet the top of the paper,  then rub the surface with your fingers until pieces of the paper start coming off, at which point your image will be revealed. This step takes patience and is a little messy, but fun.  Be careful not to rub too hard as this can remove your transfer altogether. Continue until all the paper is removed and the image is completely visible.  Cover your canvas with one more coat of gel medium to seal and protect the image, if you like.

And here is the rest of that tattered Valentine heart, which I made for someone in my yahoo group art swap:





3 comments:

Janet Ghio said...

I have never heard of the sticky back canvas-which of the methods do you like best?

Monica said...

interesting, and something I have never done other than than in a class with Lesley Riley.

kareninkenai said...

Teri, this is interesting and different for me; i just stick the sticky back canvas through the printer and print directly to the canvas. havent tried other methods with it. thx for the info hugs from Alaska. Karen