Thursday, 21 July 2011

Image transfer

I was so excited when I learnt about the technique of image transfer. Transfering images on to a page without having to stick the whole paper on. Just transfering the ink on to the page. The effects looked so great. I couldn't wait to get started. There are different methods to achieve the transfer. Glues, gel medium, paint, gesso... Christy explains different techniques in the She Had Three Hearts workshop. In a book, I found detailed descriptions about two different techniques. I didn't try all of them yet, but I tried one or two. It sort of worked, but the results weren't quite too exciting yet.

Last week, I found this post on Donna Downey's blog, and I was so impressed. My goodness, she just peeled the paper off, without even having to wait until the whole thing's completely dry, and there it was, a perfect image transfered to the page! Magic. Of course, I just wanted to try it out myself immediately. Well, the result didn't look at all like in her post. In fact, it was even worse than the ones I've tried before.

I tried it twice, with equally bad results. The few details you can actually see on the right side (my favourite café in London, at Kenwood House, Hampstead Heath) are in fact the paper, which I hadn't removed fully yet. At the end, I actually didn't bother, I just left it where it was, stuck on, and put some ModPodge over it to make it a water resistant, workable surface... The other image is just a complete mess. Although, if you try really hard, and have enough imagination, you can just about see the outline of the branches of the beautiful old tree.

Maybe I've got the "wrong" kind of gel medium, maybe I should have let the printout dry longer. Well, I'll just have to go on practising, trying out all the different methods, using different mediums, until I find the one(s) that work for me. I still am fascinated by the process.

The image transfer desaster didn't mean that I didn't want to go on painting though. After all, there are so many more fun techniques with mixed media, so that when something goes wrong, well, just cover it up and work with it :). Most of all, I wanted to try out all my new script and other stamps I bought in London. My, I just love them! I've only discovered the world of stamping last autumn, but I'm a complete stamp addict now :)

Oh I just love these new stamps!! But note to self: next time, do try not to put it on upside down... Also try to be more patient and let the surface dry properly before attempting to write on it with ink...

I like using techniques with painting that have an element of surprise, beyond control. One of the ink splashes turned into this funny face shape, which reminds me of those early Pacman games back in the 80s. Well, it's certainly been some journey from there till now, in many ways, both personally and generally.

I really enjoyed creating this art journal page, which turned out to be about "journey". It looks a bit messy, but that's life's journey, full of details and surprises and  imperfections. Not always going according to plan, needing to be patched up and adjusted at times, accepting mistakes and making the best of it to get a satisfying result in the end. It's what makes it interesting, I guess :).

As to the image transfer business, I've actually ordered a book that's all and only about image transfer techniques. I am determined :)

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