Sunday, April 12, 2015

Canvas Photo Transfer

Crafting it Myself: College Student Edition (cost and time-efficient crafts that college students can pick up at their local Walmart) 

If you are anything like me, you LOVE pictures and you’re always looking for fun, new ways to display them.  Recently, I’ve fallen in love with canvas prints.  However, I can’t really afford one (at roughly $36 for an 8x10 canvas print, what college student could?).  So, crafting to the rescue!  This project was cheap, easy, and turned out great!
Time: 2 hrs (plus about 24 hrs to dry)

Cost: about $9 for two

Materials (prices from Walmart):
canvas (I got a pack of two 8x10) - $4
foam brush - $1
Modge Podge - $4
a printout of your chosen picture

I used a Modge Podge type gel.  However, other people have used all sorts of different gels.  It’s really a matter of what is available.

I would get a pack of two canvases.  That way, if one of your transfers gets messed up somehow, you will have another canvas to try again.

1. Choose your picture.  Do any cropping or editing to your picture before printing it.  A great free website for simple photo editing is  Also, the computers in the Pedas lab have Photoshop and other photo-editing software.
**note** If your picture has words on it, flip the picture horizontally before you print it (otherwise your words will be backwards!).

2. Print your picture on regular printer paper.  This can be done from any regular printer.  Use basic, printer paper.  Make sure you set up your picture so that it fills the printer page (unless you want a smaller photo transfer).
**note** Make two copies of your picture in case something goes wrong with your first transfer.
**note** If your picture has words on it, flip the picture horizontally before you print it (otherwise your words will be backwards!).

**note** If you want to give your transfer a more “weathered” look, rip the edges of the picture, like above.

3. Prepare your canvas.  Use the foam brush to spread your Modge Podge all over your canvas.  You should make sure the canvas is fully coated with a thick coat of Modge Podge.  If your canvas is not completely covered, your photo will not transfer well.

4. Gently lay your picture, face down, on the canvas.  Start in the middle and work your way outward to press out the wrinkles.  The more wrinkles you have, the more areas where your picture will not transfer completely. 

5. Let your picture dry for at least 24 hrs.  You need to make sure it is completely dry, or else the transfer will not work.

6. After at least 24 hrs, your transfer is ready for you to finish.  This will be tedious work.  But, if you turn on Netflix while you are doing it, I promise it won’t be bad!  Start by dampening the paper on the canvas.  Then, using your finger, rub the paper.  You will notice that it will begin to pull away.  Do this all over the canvas.
**note** A great way to dampen the paper is to wet a paper towel and then brush the paper towel against the paper.
As you begin to rub the damp paper, it will peel off.  Keep peeling!

7. Repeat step 6 again and again until all of the paper has rubbed off.  You will likely need to do this 8 or so times, occasionally taking breaks in between rubbing the paper.  This will allow the paper to dry so that you can see where you need to rub some more.

8. Once the paper has been removed, and you are satisfied with the dried canvas, your picture is ready to be hung.  Enjoy!

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