for all those MIA students from tuesday – transfer processes

061as promised here are some directions for the transfer processes I demo’d in class Tuesday… you will need acetone, acrylic paint, packing tape, a container for water, photocopies, a foam brush and a roller and or brayer. Have fun!!

1. acetone transfers

This is by far the easiest way to move an image to another place. It will take some experimenting to get the right amount of acetone so that the image doesn’t dissolve in a sea of purple toner residue, but otherwise the process is very straight forward. Start with a photocopy of an image, the process works best if the toner in the machine making the copy has just been changed, so go to a high volume copy shop to get your copies made if you can, a B&W copy is only a few cents, and the images will be crisper…

a. place the image face down on the paper where you want the image to end up (practice first before you work on your final piece, and remember the image will not be perfect even after you practice!)

b. wearing gloves because acetone does evil things to your organs over time, apply a small amount of acetone to the back of the image with a foam brush.

c. rub the image with a roller to release all the toner, and gently peel away the copy paper, you should end up with something that looks like this


this was made from a very old copy, so its very incomplete, but you get the idea!

2. Acrylic transfers

This works well too, but is messier, but on the plus side it doesn’t use toxic chemicals, so…

a. take the image you want to transfer and lightly coat with acrylic paint, as you can see you can still see the image through the layer of paint, I applied the paint with my finger, it was easier to get a really consistent layer that way! 058

b. now place paint side down where you want the image to end up, because this uses acrylic paints you can put the image on pretty much anything!! now patiently wait for the paint to dry completely!! 065

c. now the final, but tricky part. onec the paint is completely dry you need to rub away the paper from the back without disturbing the paint layer. I used a slightly damp finger, which worked really well, but would kill your finger and probably draw blood if the image was large or you were doing a lot of these, I tried erasers and fine sandpaper, but they degraded the image a little, so you will have to experiment. but here is the end result. 064

3. packing tape transfers

this is the most tricky but produces astonishing results, practice a LOT if you decide to try it

a. select an image from any printed media, this one came from a magazine 068

b. apply a strip of packing tape over the top of the image

c. immerse tape and paper into a bath of water, and gently rub until the paper peels away, you will be left with just the ink of the image on the tape, and you will be able to see through it again.

d. lay tape over area where you want to apply the transfer, now you have two options, the first is to apply hard pressure with a brayer to the tape and rub the ink off, the second is to make the paper you are applying the image to DAMP with some acetone, and then roll the ink on with a roller, don’t use a brayer for this method as it will move the ink around and smudge, unless of course you want that effect!!070 applied with a roller, and then with a brayer here071

1 thought on “for all those MIA students from tuesday – transfer processes

  1. Sweet! Also. Jordache here is super siked about thee acetone one! hahaha but ya I will plan on showing you all my ideasssssssssssss on tuesday and will get all my materials together as well.

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