How to: Make a Gigantic Solvent Transfer
I've been on a “big art” kick lately. And when I say “big”, I mean gigantic (check out The World's Largest Wood Type for further clarification). There's something about a traditional art or craft done at a mind-blowingly large scale that just tickles my magic beans. So I'm going to file this 15' x 10' solvent transfer sign + tutorial in my enormous folder for all things awesome.
The creative folks at The Mandate Press applied this Beatrice Warde quote to a big ol' sheet of canvas that is, hands down, the largest solvent transfer I have ever seen. If you're not familiar with solvent transfers, the process is actually quite simple:
1) Print out an image with a toner-based printer (laser printer, not an inkjet) and lay it ink-side down onto a piece of canvas or paper or wood…the list goes on.
2) Coat the back of the paper with acetone and firmly burnish all of the inked areas with a spoon or brayer.
3) Peel the paper off and, assuming you used enough solvent and pressed hard enough, the ink will have transferred from your paper to the canvas.
A coupleimportant things I should mention about solvent transfers: 1) The transfer on the canvas will be a mirror image of what was on the paper, so make sure you reverse your image/text before printing it. 2) Solvents are nasty, toxic stuff. Besides acetone, I know people who use Xylene, as well as wintergreen oil (for real…it's less toxic than a lot of solvents, and it makes your entire house smell like wintergreen). Regardless of what you use, make sure you do this in a well-ventilated room and wear gloves.
Now back to the huge solvent transfer: The tutorial that was written up by The Mandate Press is great, but if you've never tried this before, I'd recommend starting a bit smaller and possibly checking out a more detailed tutorial (like this one).
Double XL Solvent Transfer + Tutorial [The Mandate Press]