Saturday, May 23, 2015

Process : photo transfer

Happy Memorial Weekend!! 

It was cloudy; I was rushed. This process takes time and space & I don't feel like I have at the moment!!

Instead of spending another minute wishing I was making art, fail or succeed, I'm pressing through. 

Like I said in my last two posts, I'm choosing to "show up" each day by carving out space in my life to make art and pursue creativity. Hoping to discover new processes, share them with you here (photos and video) and we can learn together. My goal is to inspire, to grow as an artist and to be generous with all that I know. 

Currently, It is a goal of mine to begin to understand all processes of photo transfer, and what the results are from each way that process can be done. 

So I dove in. 
The carcinogenic chemical xylene was the first method I chose to try. 

Through research I discovered this was the absolute best method used to transfer images. 

So I suited up for the job, with chemical gloves and a chemical fume safe mask that I bought at Home Depot. 

Many posts on other blogs about this  process suggest that you get a blender pen from the art store.    

They aren't really pricy, but they have very little xylene in them and dry out extremely fast. So the  quart of xylene from Home Depot cost only $7 and it's enough for 1000's of transfers!!! I'm always looking for a deal, and believe me this mama is thrifty!!! 

So you will need a cheap paint brush, a small glass jar and one of these. I also opened every window in the house and put two fans in the windows blowing fresh air into the room. Believe me, you don't want want to breathe this stuff!! 

I started out with my own photography 
And processed it in Photoshop. In PS you must flip image horizontally and save as a copy. And since my own laser printer is forever running out of ink, and ink is pricier per ounce than gold, I took a usb stick to Fed Ex office and printed out some nice but affordable color copies. 

I wanted to try several different surfaces with the xylene. 1st was a painted board. I took the painted board and sanded it smooth. 

Then I placed the laser printed color copy face down onto the surface holding it in place with my hand ( which is covered with chemical glove). Then I pour a very small amount of xylene in a glass jar and use a small soft brush to brush over the back side of the image. After that I use one of these scrapers or a credit card to gently rub over the back side of the image. 
Once the image dries, and xylene evaporates, you can gently pull off the paper and reveal the transferred image! 

So back to the painted board photo transfer...the results were so disappointing!!! I was saddened to find out that this will not work. Although I could try prints from a different printer and see what happens . 

I actually liked what it did to the print but the image didn't transfer hardly at all. (Sad face). 

Next I tried canvas. Same process as before, and after the painted board I had a feeling it wouldn't work. 
I was right.  A bit better than the painted (gessoed) board. 

Next I tried a pressed cardboard board. Again, I started to have doubts that it works on much. And it didn't work either. (Picture to come later) 

Next, I tried my journal. Inside is a nicer acid free graph paper ( purchased at Barnes and Noble) 

The results were great!!! I was happy I finally got something to work. Still really disappointed about the first three, but I'll figure out ways around it I am sure!! 

Original pic was : 

Second pic : 

Third I tried was : 

Original pic: 

Fourth pic... I got carried away!!! Couldn't stop! This time i photocopied one of my paintings and transferred that... 

I really liked it!! 

At this point I'm sure if I pulled off my gas mask I would have had cancer in two minutes, so remember how toxic this stuff is and don't pull off your mask just because you're done. Air out the house first! 

Okay, so I tried one more:  

Looking forward to making more!!! 

Next I tried the Mod Podge process. Stay tuned for my results!  

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