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 Acrylic Transfers for Perfect Letters

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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Acrylic Transfers for Perfect Letters   Thu Jan 21, 2010 10:10 pm

Here is how to use acrylic transfers that you make yourself to get the exact letters you want. They are great for eliminating the torturous and tedious painting of letters. I use them for painting plaques to sell and give as gifts. I still hand paint the picture on them, but no longer struggle with the letters.

Design the letters and words you want on the computer. Try to use a program that gives you nice, clean edges on your letters. Size them according to what you plan to put them on.

Print the letters out on a piece of white paper. Trim to size so you have a 1/4 inch extra around the edges.

Place the printed sheet on a piece of glass which will be you work surface. Have the printed side UP. Spread a thin, even coat of Golden soft gel gloss medium over the letters and let it dry. I find that a cake icing spatula works really well.



The gel will be cloudy at first and then clear once it is dry in about 1 to 2 hours. Add 3 to 7 layers depending on how thick you make each layer. You want the finished sheet to be sturdy enough to peal off the glass without tearing.



Once it is all dry, trim off some of the excess, turn it over and wet the paper back thoroughly. For smaller pieces, I like to take it directly to the sink and really saturate the paper. Once it is really wet, gently rub the paper off with a fine scrubby.




Keep re-wetting it as you go.

When you get almost all the paper off, I like to use my finger to gently rub the rest of the paper off. You can feel if there is still more, and it is easier to control the pressure.



One you are satisfied that there is no more paper, blot it dry and lay it flat on a piece of wax paper to dry. If it is a large piece, be sure to not allow it to touch itself, because it will stick together. If you need to fold it because of it's size, be sure to put wax paper in between the layers so they don't stick together. They will be almost impossible to separate without damage otherwise.

When it is all dry, trim it as much as you want. Separate the words if you want. Get it ready to be put on what you want.



I like to use a clear ruler to help me place the letters evenly.



To adhere it to the surface you have chosen, spread a thin coat of the gel medium on the back of the words. I like to use a small paint brush to apply the medium. Place it on the surface and gently rub out from the middle to flatten the letters and make them adhere.




I prepared the wood in two different ways.

In this one, the painting was done with acrylics and so I didn't prepare the wood at all. I wish I had because if you look around the letters, you can see where the gel medium sealed the wood giving it an uneven finish when I started applying the acrylic polyurethane coats over the finished plaque. Fortunately, the more layers I added, the less visible the difference was. Also, the raise of the letters became almost indistinguishable.

I used soft pastel pencils to sketch in the cabin. They dissolve into the acrylic paint or can be wiped off easily if you want to change something

This other one was sealed with 2 coats of Liquitex Clear Gesso before painting.

It was painted with WS Oils as an experiment to see how well the paint would adhere to the wood. Without being sealed, I'm sure the wood would have soaked up the paint and given fuzzy borders.

The paint adhered beautifully to the toothy finish of the clear gesso. It blended easily and did not lift at all as I painted over areas.

Also having sealed the wood, there was no problem with the gel medium sealing the wood around the letters like in the other example.

I sketched the paintings using Neocolor II water soluble wax pastels. They don't smudge but can be washed off if you want to make changes. They also dissolve into the WS Oils as you paint over them.

The only problem now is waiting for the WS Oils to dry sufficiently so I can seal the whole thing in an oil friendly varnish.

Having done this, I would not hesitate to do a full painting on good wood such as baltic birch plywood, as ;long as I did not want any of the wood showing.

For plaques, I'll stick with acrylics for the painting and acrylic transfers for the letters but I will be sure to seal the wood first.

Judy

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Janet
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PostSubject: Re: Acrylic Transfers for Perfect Letters   Thu Jan 21, 2010 10:54 pm

Judy, that's really neat! Thank you for sharing! Smile

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kbaxterpackwood

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PostSubject: Re: Acrylic Transfers for Perfect Letters   Sat Jan 23, 2010 1:59 am

You can do this with images btw, I use a teflon pressing sheet instead of glass to to my transfers on, the flexible surface helps with preventing tearing.

Kimberly
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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Re: Acrylic Transfers for Perfect Letters   Sat Jan 23, 2010 11:49 am

Thanks Kimberly,

I have done it with some of my paintings for less expensive items I sell at art fairs. People are funny. Some only want the hand painted and others don't want to pay the price for the hand painted. I found that you have to have variety to please more people and make more sales.

Thanks for the suggestion about the teflon sheet. I'll give it a try. It makes sense for making it easier to get it off the support surface.

Judy

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Callie
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PostSubject: Re: Acrylic Transfers for Perfect Letters   Sat Jan 23, 2010 11:58 am

This is very interesting! Thanks for the how-to, Judy!
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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Re: Acrylic Transfers for Perfect Letters   Sat Jan 23, 2010 12:01 pm

Hi Again Kimberly,

Just looked at your website. Very impressive on all the things you do. I also do some quilting and have also converted some of my paintings into embroidery patterns for hand sewn items. I'm also into natural as far as food go, but your natural dyes look pretty interesting; something to consider.

I'm in the middle or writing a page on the transfer technique and would love to include your hint about the teflon. I could put a link to your site on the page as the contributor of the tip. Let me know if that is all right.

Judy

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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Re: Acrylic Transfers for Perfect Letters   Sat Jan 23, 2010 12:03 pm

Thanks Callie,

I tend to constantly be experimenting with new and different things.

Judy

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kbaxterpackwood

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PostSubject: Re: Acrylic Transfers for Perfect Letters   Sat Jan 23, 2010 12:51 pm

judyfilarecki wrote:
Hi Again Kimberly,

Just looked at your website. Very impressive on all the things you do. I also do some quilting and have also converted some of my paintings into embroidery patterns for hand sewn items. I'm also into natural as far as food go, but your natural dyes look pretty interesting; something to consider.

I'm in the middle or writing a page on the transfer technique and would love to include your hint about the teflon. I could put a link to your site on the page as the contributor of the tip. Let me know if that is all right.

Judy

I would love that Judy!
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