Transferring Images to Wood #2: The Dirty Work & The Big Payoff!

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Blog entry by KnotCurser posted 432 days ago 1834 reads 13 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Day One - Prep Work & Stickin It To the Man! Part 2 of Transferring Images to Wood series no next part

Okay, you have waited overnight (at least) and are now ready to continue…....

The image has now dried and all the medium has gone perfectly clear.

If you noticed the change in scenery, we are now in my kitchen at the sink.

Get the water running pretty warm and then totally soak the image – that’s right SOAK IT!

Let the water sit on top of the wood until the paper actually absorbs it and then put a tad more on.

Now, take your thumb and, gently at first, start rubbing the paper in one direction until it starts to roll up and part company with the image underneath. I generally start in the center and work my way to the edges. Keep applying water when the paper starts to dry out. Don’t try to get every bit of paper off on this attempt – just the easy stuff.

Now, once all the “slag” is off, go back and use your finger tips in a circular motion to start getting some of the tougher bits off. Don’t rub too hard or you will start removing the image itself! Also, don’t go too long or the image will start to soften. When you have most of it off, dry it off with a paper towel and put it down to dry for a few hours.

Here’s what it will probably look like when it dries – not too nice yet….........

Once again, go to the sink and this time only wet your fingertips and get the spots that remain – if you wish, you can now experiment with adding a touch more pressure at certain places to remove some of the image for that aged look.

You should only get a small amount off – don’t worry about getting every last little bit – it isn’t needed.

Once again, dry it off and let it dry.

Here’s what it will look like – still, not the greatest, eh?

Now, for the big payoff! Change of scenery again – back in the shop…....

Intermission: Here is where you can take a piece of sandpaper and roughen up or blend in the edges of your image. Make it look aged, etc…. I most certainly did this with my first image, but this one I chose to only go with what I rubbed off during the cleanup process.

Back to the show…........

Take your clearcoat and spray (or brush I suppose) a coat over the entire surface of the wood.

Instantly, as if by magic, all the white blotches disappear and out pops a brilliant, crisp and clear image!

I’m going to attache a picture hanger on the rear of this one and hang it up at work – I am pretty sure I’ll sell it to somebody in the next week or so. :-)

I hope you enjoyed this two-part thriller and please feel free to let me know how this goes for you, should you decide to give it a shot! Also, I’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have – good luck!!!!

Cheers, and GO O’s!


-- Robert Rhoades WoodWorks / Email: /

14 comments so far

View KnotCurser's profile


1813 posts in 1700 days

#1 posted 432 days ago

One other thing I forgot to mention – try not to rinse all that paper down your sink! It will do bad thing in your pipes, and nobody wants that!


-- Robert Rhoades WoodWorks / Email: /

View degoose's profile


6996 posts in 1986 days

#2 posted 432 days ago

Very cool procedure… and your blog was very informative…

-- Drink twice... and don't bother to cut... @ For lovers of all things timber...

View DIYaholic's profile


13304 posts in 1307 days

#3 posted 432 days ago

Great write-up!
Explained soooooooo well…..
I think even I could successfully do this!!!

Thanks for taking the time to blog this procedure!

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procratination a bad thing?

View SPalm's profile


4788 posts in 2514 days

#4 posted 432 days ago

Neat. Thanks.
Go Natty Boh.


-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View flintbone's profile


181 posts in 1788 days

#5 posted 432 days ago

Nice and easy to follow information. Thanks Bob.

-- If I had only known, I would have been a locksmith. - Albert Einstein

View Celticscroller's profile


768 posts in 705 days

#6 posted 432 days ago

Great blog Bob. This is definitely worth a try.

-- Anna

View robscastle's profile (online now)


1645 posts in 836 days

#7 posted 431 days ago

Well I know Titebond II does not work!


So it was off to the The Art Factory 274 Montague Rd for some Derivan Matisse Gel Medium and try again !
02 9736-2022

-- Regards Robert

View Roger's profile


14373 posts in 1436 days

#8 posted 431 days ago

Nice blog bob. I’ll have to give it a try one o these days. :)

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe.

View BritBoxmaker's profile


4358 posts in 1668 days

#9 posted 431 days ago

Good blog, Bob.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

View robscastle's profile (online now)


1645 posts in 836 days

#10 posted 431 days ago

Well here is a shot of my second try its a bit raggedy but a project well worth perusing further.

Thanks b0b for your inspiration.


Robert Brennan

-- Regards Robert

View KnotCurser's profile


1813 posts in 1700 days

#11 posted 431 days ago

Looking good Robert – A great choice for the subject of your work!

I might suggest switching to spray lacquer instead of the poly though….. I have heard that poly might interact with the medium and make it all gooey, but since I’ve never tried it I am not sure.

Keep up the great work!


-- Robert Rhoades WoodWorks / Email: /

View stefang's profile (online now)


12936 posts in 1966 days

#12 posted 357 days ago

A super tutorial blog Bob and a fantastic result on the transfer. I already have the medium, so I will surely give it a try in the near future. Thanks much for sharing this with us.

One point that was not clear to me was the final instruction of drying,lathering, rinsing and repeating. Do you mean to get off the medium or are you talking about the picture? And it seems a strange thing to do after the whole surface has been lacquered.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View KnotCurser's profile


1813 posts in 1700 days

#13 posted 357 days ago


This is my fault – I meant to put that statement directly after the part where you rub off a layer of paper and BEFORE you apply lacquer.

Good eyes! Thanks for pointing this out – I am going to edit the page to avoid anyone screwing up there work at the last second.

Thanks again,


-- Robert Rhoades WoodWorks / Email: /

View brianadams's profile


183 posts in 1276 days

#14 posted 325 days ago

Awesome, thanks for the extra info, that’ll help a lot!


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