How to Transfer an Image to Pastel Paper

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    Textured Transfer Method

    • 1). Choose an image that isn't too detailed or abstract. The image should have a wide tonal range. If the image is coated, it will not work. A photocopier duplicate should be made.

    • 2). Prepare a copy of the image. Leave at least an inch border to go under the clipboard clip. Because the image will be facedown on the pastel paper, the finished transfer will look backward unless the copy is a reverse image. To create a mirror image, scan the original and use a computer program to reverse it before printing it out. Another option is to copy the image onto a transparency, which will be flipped on the copier glass.

    • 3). Select an archival pastel paper. Most pastel paper can also be used with watercolors. Sofia Romero recommends Arches 88 for getting the most detail out of a transfer. However, it is a silk screening paper and may not work well with pastels. Stonehenge silkscreen paper may have similar results as Arches 88 and is advertised to be workable with pastels and other mediums.

    • 4). Fasten the art paper and photocopy under the clipboard clip. Tape one of the remaining corners down. You will lift the other corner occasionally to check the print's progress.

    • 5). Fold up a rag into a thick square. With gloves on, pour some solvent on the rag. Rub the rag firmly into the back of the photocopy. A brayer can be used for additional pressure. The solvent evaporates quickly; so several reapplications are necessary. After the transfer is complete, carefully separate the papers from each other. Let them dry for 10 to 30 minutes.

    • 6). Apply watercolors directly to the surface. If using pastels or pencils, spray a working fixative over the entire paper before drawing on it. When the image is finished, whether or not you drew on it, spray on a coat of acrylic sealer to the image.

    Smooth Transfer Method

    • 1). Select an image. This method creates a transfer with a smooth appearance. Details should be rendered almost exactly as they are in your photocopy.

    • 2). Prepare a copy of the image. Select an archival pastel paper.

    • 3). Fasten the art paper under the clipboard clip. Trim off excess paper from around the photocopy image. Place the photocopy onto the art paper. Mark the photocopy corners lightly in pencil so that you will know where to apply the gloss medium. Using a sponge brush, spread a thick layer of gloss medium to the photocopy image and inside the pencil marks on the art paper. Place the photocopy inside the pencil marks.

    • 4). Roll a brayer across the back of the photocopy. Wipe up excess medium from around the edges of the paper. Wet your fingertips with water, and rub them over the photocopy paper. Pick up the free corner of the photocopy. If the ink has transferred to the art paper, slowly peel away the paper. A thin layer of the photocopy paper will still be attached to the art paper. It can be removed by wetting your fingertips and rubbing them across the surface until it pills away.

    • 5). Make a mixed-media piece. Stabilize the image.

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