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How to Transfer a Photo to Wood

How to transfer a color photo to wood or any other hard surface.
How to transfer a color photo to wood or any other hard surface.
By Kathy Cano-Murillo

Every month Kathy Cano-Murillo, a.k.a. The Crafty Chica, dishes crafty tips and tricks in La Vida Crafty on Jackalope Ranch.

Image transfers are one of those timeless crafts that are always fun to revisit. While recently shopping in downtown Tucson, I came across a few stores that had walls of image transfers on wood. Inspiration hit. I came home and used my illustrations (and my husband's) to give it a try. This is my trial run, and I love how they turned out! I definitely plan to make more and spruce them up a bit.

See also: How to Make Crushed Pepper Resin Charms

Here are the supplies you'll need.
Here are the supplies you'll need.
Kathy Cano-Murillo

Supplies: Wood plaque Decoupage medium Laser color copy (not InkJet) Soft bristle brush Sponge, bowl of water

How to apply the decoupage medium.
How to apply the decoupage medium.
Kathy Cano-Murillo

Tip: If your image has lettering, you'll need to flip it before printing it. That way it won't come out backwards.

1. Squirt a generous amount of decoupage medium on the image, and use the brush to coat the image. You want it to be nice and juicy. Carefully lift the image and place it face down on the wood plaque. Rub over it with your fingers. I like to use an old gift card to smooth out any bubbles.

How to remove the pulp.
How to remove the pulp.
By Kathy Cano-Murillo

2. Let it dry overnight.

3. Dip your sponge in the water and squeeze it on the image until you can see the image soak through. Rub the image in circular motions to remove the pulp.  

Keep rubbing off the pulp!
Keep rubbing off the pulp!
By Kathy Cano-Murillo

4. Let it set a few minutes until you see a haze. Squeeze out the sponge so it is semi-dry and rub off the haze. You can also use your fingers to roll it off.

Finished look.
Finished look.
By Kathy Cano-Murillo

5. The more you rub, the more you will rub off the image. So you can go for a weathered look and scrub around the edges or how ever you'd like. I found that regular printer paper works better than heavier paper like cardstock.

6. If you want a shiny look, use a high-gloss spray sealer.

How to Transfer a Photo to Wood
By Kathy Cano-Murillo

You can also use this technique to apply photos to other hard surfaces like a canvas, furniture, or a leather bag.

Have you ever tried an image transfer technique? There are so many variations, I'm excited to try more.

Until next time, peace, love, and glitter!

See more of Kathy's writing at CraftyChica. Follow her on Google+, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter.

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