I am going to show you how to make canvas wrapped prints for a little more than $1.00 per picture!!!
Besides a computer and printer, you will need:
- unwrinkled tissue paper cut to just under 8 1/2 x 11
- 8 1/2 x 11 card stock
- masking tape
- 8 x 10 canvas panel ($20 for 10 at Michaels, but with a 40% – 50% discount…..)
- sponge brush
- Paper Mod Podge – Matte (you can also use satin or gloss, but I liked the look of matte)
- Oh, and don’t forget to have a nice photo. (I used black and white, but if you decide to print in color, do let us know how it works!)
Because I was making a whole lot of prints (and making a whole lot of mistakes … so that you won’t have to make a whole lot of mistakes), I prepared a whole stack of tissue paper… (Clearly, this was a desperate bid to somehow do something with the 75,000+ pictures on my hard drive…)
Let’s just say you are only going to make one canvas print. In that case, cut the tissue paper just a bit smaller than your card stock (about 1/8 an inch should do nicely). When you are taping the tissue paper to the card stock, be sure to keep the tissue taut and smooth so there are no wrinkles to jam your printer head.
If, like me, you are making multiple prints, go ahead and make a stack. If you are normal, make just one….(no judging, please).
Load your paper so that the printer will grab the masking tape edge first. Follow your printer’s directions so that you print on to the tissue paper side. In most cases, that will mean the tissue paper side will be facing down.
Once printed, cut away the taped edges (it’s best to cut the long edges and the non-masking tape edges first. That way, the final taped edge holds everything in place). Hang on to the card stock and one of the taped edges (use the longer edge). You will use the card stock and the taped edge to help apply the picture to the canvas. Before you apply the tissue paper, mark the canvas so that your picture will be centered on the canvas. Pour some Mod Podge in a container. With the sponge roller, spread the Mod Podge evenly on the canvas (you can’t really see it in this picture, but trust me the Mod Podge is evenly spread).
You want to be sure that it is evenly wet, but not sloppy. Before you begin to apply the picture to the canvas, the tissue paper picture should be lying on the card stock. Align the bottom of the tissue paper between your two dots and slowly pull the card stock away from the picture so that the tissue paper picture falls on to the Mod Podged canvas. Use the taped card stock edge to help the tissue paper picture lie smoothly on the canvas.
Once the entire tissue paper picture is lying on the canvas, put the card stock (remember, I told you to save it) on top of the tissue paper picture. Quickly smooth the area by applying pressure with your hand. Remove the cardboard right away (if you don’t, some of the picture might transfer to the cardboard).
NOTE: You may be tempted to try to smooth things out while you are laying the tissue paper picture on the canvas, but DON’T DO IT!!! Use the cardboard and smooth it with your hands. You will notice some bubbles on the canvas. Use your fingers (make sure they are dry) to press them down. It’s sort of like popping bubble wrap. (Some of the ink will transfer to your fingers, so be sure to wipe them off before pressing bubbles on lighter areas of your canvas).
Once you have all the bubbles pressed out, let your picture dry. Optimally, you would let it dry for a few hours, but I have done some with only a 40 minute drying time.
Once dry, you need to put another coat of Mod Podge over the entire picture and canvas.
You need to work fast. Apply a blob of Mod Podge to a piece of card stock and roll it out to the size of your canvas print. Use the foam roller. It’s fast and efficient. Press the Mod Podged card stock on to the canvas and rub quickly with your hands. Lift the card stock. It should leave a nice even layer of Mod Podge on your canvas. Use the foam roller to smooth out the Mod Podge. See how quick I was? You can barely see my hand move…. Use your finger to smooth things out a little more (not quite bubble wrap, but pretty darned close…). You will undoubtedly smear some of the ink on to the white edge of the canvas. That’s okay. Once you are happy with your picture, you can take a wet rag (not soppy wet) and wipe the ink from the canvas (do NOT wipe the picture). Let the picture dry for several hours. By the way (and this was very important for me while I was trying out different methods), up to the point of the canvas drying, if you make a mess (and that’s entirely possible the first couple of tries) you can quickly wash the tissue paper and Mod Podge off the canvas (use a dish rag to help remove the old Mod Podge, tissue and ink). Once the canvas dries, you can use it again!!! This method is so fun, so easy and so cheap, I want to put everything on canvas.