Saturday, August 28, 2010

Linda Ledbetter: Super Simple Image Transfer with Gesso

I learned this cool and simple method of doing image transfers in the "At Home with Claudine Hellmuth" class I'm taking, and I've had so much fun using it! This method works with laser prints, photocopies and magazine images, but not with ink jet prints. Remember, your image will be reversed in the transfer, so if there's text involved you'll want to flip it in a photo editing program before transferring it!

You'll need:

♦ A canvas (mine is 5 x 7)

♦ Claudine Hellmuth Studio Gesso

♦ A flat paint brush

♦ A piece of scrapbook paper

Begin by spreading a layer of gesso

all over the canvas with your paintbrush,

about as thickly as you'd put peanut butter on a sandwich.

Place your scrapbook paper or printout face-down

into the layer of gesso, and smooth it out gently

with a credit card or craft scraper. Work out any air bubbles and

make sure the paper is completely pressed into the gesso.

Let this dry for 24 hours. Seriously.

Don't cheat and try to rush it.

Remember: "If you rush a Miracle Man,

you get lousy miracles."

Nighty night...

Okay, now it's a new day!

Saturate the paper with water.

Begin gently rubbing the paper off the canvas.

This will take what feels like forever. It'll be worth it, I promise.

Just keep rolling off those little bits of paper,

adding more water as you need to,

until you're not feeling paper crumbs under you fingers anymore.

Magically, the print has transferred to the canvas.

You might have a few spots where the image

didn't transfer completely.

That's good! That's why we call it "SHABBY chic!"

For extra added shabbiness, if you so desire,

dry-brush a little gesso on top of the image for a whitewashed look.

If you overdo it, just gently wipe away some of the gesso with a damp paper towel.

And, there you go! An easy, shabby-yet-chic image transfer,

just waiting for you to embellish it!


  1. Wow great tutorial, thanks
    Claire xx

  2. you must have read my mind as I wanted to try image transfer thanks for the tutorial

  3. Great tut, I've never tried this technique.

  4. Hi Linda...this is great...thanks for the tutorial....
    Cynthia Schelzig

  5. Oooh, can't wait to try this, thanks so much Linda,

    Lucy x

  6. Great tutorial, Linda! You've got this technique down and get superb results with it! Claudine's class sure is fun. Had to laugh with your movie quote - at our house we throw around "Have fun storming the castle" just a little bit later in the scene :-)

  7. Great tutorial. I'm taking Claudine's class too and this has to be one of my favorite almost foolproof. (Good for me!) =)

    Your project turned out beautifully.

  8. Am going right now to give this a try! Will let you know how I make out! Thanks for the information.

    Have a great weekend.
    Smiles and Blessings,

  9. Thanks Linda, this is a great tutorial and the results are beautiful. :)

  10. What a great technique! Gotta try it - you've gotten beautiful results. (BTW, Linda and Penny, we "Have fun storming the castle" at our house, too, ROFL!!)

  11. I Love doing image transfers but never tried using decorative paper, Great idea and well done!

  12. Love the transfer and isn't Claudine wonderful!

  13. I didn't realise you were on the course too! It is really great isn't it. Will look out for your work. x

  14. What name are you using for your work on Claudine's course?

  15. Great tut GF, you write with such flair, and make me lol, nitey nite! xx

  16. Ouuu! This is neat! Thanks for the lesson!

  17. Fabulous technique! Thank you Linda for sharing! I just posted a couple ATCs using it on my blog!


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