Make Your Own Canvas Portrait!



I love the look of family photos printed on canvas, but I never knew I could make them at home! After transferring photos to fabric, I was super excited to try some pieces using stretched canvas. I hope this inspires some of you to make something special for your home…


Here's how I transferred my photo to canvas:
1. Supplies needed- stretched canvas (I chose an 8×10 size), gel medium (I used this kind from Liquidex), paint brush and the image you want to transfer (laser copy) and a spray bottle filled with water. Remember, your image will print reversed. 2. Completely cover your canvas with gel medium. Use a heavy coat. 3. Press the photo copy onto the canvas and let it dry for several hours or overnight. 4. After your image is completely dry, use a spray bottle to wet the top of the paper. 5. Rub the surface with your fingers until pieces of the paper start coming off. When pieces start coming up your image will be revealed. This step takes patience and is messy! Be careful not to rub too hard as this can remove your transfer on accident. Continue until all the paper is removed and the image is completely visible! 6. Cover your canvas with one more coat of gel medium to seal and protect the image.



Note: You can expect an imperfect transfer. I think the imperfections are absolutely lovely! It's best to choose an image that is not incredibly detailed to work with. Each transfer is different. The more you experiment, the better!


I'm so excited to have this little keepsake for our home. These would also make amazing gifts! I can't wait to make more. xo. elsie


Wedding photo courtesty of Arrow and Apple.

EDITED TO ADD: Wow, guys! We're so happy that hundreds of you have tried this DIY! Some of you have had questions or issues with this project so we wrote a follow up post with more details and FAQ- click here for more information on making your own canvas! Happy Crafting! 

  • Perfect. I just ordered a canvas print and they are crazy expensive!!! This looks so doable. I actually think it looks nicer. Can’t wait to try it!!


  • Amber, I haven’t tried color on canvas. I did try it on cotton fabric, though… check out the link in the post above. XO!

  • Oooh! I totally want to do this with my new wedding photos to use as Christmas gifts! Such a great idea!

  • I absolutely love this! I think it would make a perfect gift for newly weds. I might have to do it for my sister and her husband 🙂
    Love and Turtledoves,

  • I know this has been around for a very long, long time and it’s nothing original or new but do you ever give credit to the source you get your “ideas” from? Or are we expected to believe you just invent them (as from these comments, we are)? You’re a huge lifestyle/diy blog and would think you wouldn’t, but just been proven wrong.

  • Elsie,
    you have the bestest ideas ever! This is so great and it looks so perfect and lovely!
    I’ll definitely try this one out very soon! <3

  • OH MY GOD! I love you for that tutorial! I was thinking about buying a picture on canvas, but now I can do it by myself! WOW!

  • Just a reminder, using a professional photo that you do not own the rights to would be a bad choice for this project.

  • Elsie, this is great. You’re really making some fabulous projects! I can’t wait to try this one.

  • Elsie, I have been obsessed with this idea since I first read your post on the image transfer pockets you made. Amazing. I am wondering, though, regarding fabric transfers for things that you wear and wash: what would happen if after the image was set and complete, you put it under heat (an iron or a transfer press)? Do you think it would just make a huge mess, or would the heat set the image more permanently into the fabric, which would mean you could then machine wash?

  • What an excellent idea! I had been racking my brain for a gift to take to the inlaws across the country and this would travel very well! Thanks so much!

  • Ohhh fun. I have 4 little canvases around already and would love to do one of each of our pets for a little collection. Such a great idea.


  • I love this! I m going to try it with a couple of my wedding photos and one for my sisters birthday present! thank you so much forthe fabulous idea Elsie!

  • I am so excited about this!!! I have wanted pictures on canvas for so long but they can be seriously spend-y when you have someone else do it. I love the way this looks!! It has a really old antique-y look and I L-O-V-E it!!! Thank you for sharing…you are THE best!!! 🙂

  • I love this idea and can’t wait to try it( (especially with Christmas coming up). Thanks for posting! But I was wondering, does Mod Podge glue count as a gel medium?

  • Wow! this is such a great idea! I love it! you always have the greatest DIY projects on here. I loveeee your blog.:)

  • Q: This is beautiful! Is it possible with coloured print?
    A: Yes. I’ve seen them done beautifully. I might try a colored version next!

    Q: I know this has been around for a very long, long time and it’s nothing original or new but do you ever give credit to the source you get your “ideas” from? Or are we expected to believe you just invent them.
    A: When teaching basic skills it’s *always* true that I’m not the first person to ‘invent’ the skill. Even with basic skills that have been around for a long time I think it can be valuable to produces a new, high quality photo tutorial. Sure, you can find tutorials else where but we are producing them with our unique style and easy-to-follow instructions that my readers enjoy. Some of my readers have never learned about this technique and I want to share it in a way that is beautiful and practical. Also, I want to share my personal tips for basic skills.
    I link other people within the community all the time. This tutorial wasn’t a skill I learned from another blogger, so I didn’t.

    Q: Just a reminder, using a professional photo that you do not own the rights to would be a bad choice for this project.
    A: Good point! I do have rights to my wedding photos. I forgot to put the credit to my photographer up last night (sleepy mistake) so I’ve added it now.

    Q: I am wondering, though, regarding fabric transfers for things that you wear and wash: what would happen if after the image was set and complete, you put it under heat (an iron or a transfer press)? Do you think it would just make a huge mess, or would the heat set the image more permanently into the fabric, which would mean you could then machine wash?
    A: I don’t know for sure if heat setting would work for these, but I doubt it. There might be some kind of treatment you could use, but I’m not sure.
    For the method I taught here I recommend hand washing those pieces.

    Q: But I was wondering, does Mod Podge glue count as a gel medium?
    A: I haven’t tried this, but it would probably work. Maybe try a small sample piece to test it?

    Thanks so much for all the kind comments! I loved making this basic skill and I hope that some of you can make beautiful things with it! XO!

  • Q: what is gel medium and is laser paper just normal printing paper?
    A: ooops.. sorry, i missed you! Gel Medium can be found in the art section. I linked the brand that I use in my post. It can also be called ‘heavy gel’. It is the same thing that I use to seal all my acrylic paintings.
    Laser copies are the ‘cheap’ kind that you can get at a copy store. The kind you print with at home is usually an inkjet printed. If you have a nice photo (photo paper), just take it to the copy shop to get a quick copy for this project!
    Hope that helps.

  • i love this!=] i was wondering if this will work on photos printed with a black/white laser printer or does it have to be a colour laser printer? Thanks! =]

  • Thanks Elsie, that’s awesome, I can’t wait to try this!:D Please keep posting these awesome diy projects=]

  • the gel that u use in this to make it stick is is similiar to mod podge? because i cant find the gel you are using??

  • Hi, Elsie!

    This has inspired me a lot! Soo amazing! Question: When you say “laser copy”, what is that exactly? Can you use any type of photo?

    Thanks for sharing this!


  • this is such a clever idea. am super keen to try it out for christmas pressies. thanks for all your wonderful ideas..and those of your team too.

  • Errr.. this might be a stupid comment but I wanted to make sure before I gave it a go myself – when you apply the picture to the canvas, it’s face down right? As in the photo itself goes onto the gel. Cheers!

  • Thank you, Elsie! Don’t listen to silly people. They are rude. My husband is wearing a super fly yellow sweater today that we bought at your RVA store back in April. Keep on rocking!!!

  • This looks so cool. I want to try it with some colored photos. What type of paper do you print on? Regular printer paper or photo paper?

    Thank you!

  • Such a great idea! I also love the picture you chose, it is so beautiful. You always inspire me to do some DIY projects… Plenty of ideas, now I just need that little push to actually start a project.

    Sparkles And Flare

  • Your directions say laser copy does it make a difference if it’s ink jet?

  • Thank you for this!! I have been wanting to buy one of these for so long, but they are SOOO overpriced! I knew there had to be a DIY way. 🙂

  • I’ve seen this done recently and fell IN LOVE! The girl I saw do it did it on a wood block though, which is cool too!

  • Hi, I’m from Holland and I love this project, but what is this medium gel you use? Is it some sort of glue or..?? In Holland we put gel in our hair, or is that excectly what it is? Haha, I would love to do this project!

  • I totally want to make a bunch of these but dont have a laser printer, do you know of a place that can print laser photos online?

  • Wow, such a wonderful tutorial!
    This idea seems so much fun!
    I’m gonna try this as soon as I’ve got the time, I’ve got everything I need at home all ready 😀

  • Genius! I need to try this on some of my mum’s black & white 50s & 60s photos. What a lovely gift they’d make. Thank you for sharing 🙂

  • quick question… I bought everything to do this today, but I have a question about the photo. Does it need to be printed on photo paper or just regular white paper?

    Can’t wait to try it!

  • I love this method! Does the canvas texture still come through on the photo? Also, I have seen other DIY for transfers onto wood and other surfaces…what kind of paper do you print the photo on? No one ever seems to mention that…

  • I forgot to elaborate on my paper question….if you use photo paper, do you use matte, glossy, high gloss, etc or does the photo paper type even matter?

  • Do I really need a picture printed in laser? I only have the normal ink printer. :(:(…. do u think it could work?
    I love the tutorial! Thank u so much!

  • What exactly do you mean by laser copy of the photo? just a regular copy?

  • I’ve done this before!! Instead of using your hands to remove the paper, you can use a kitchen scour. Great arm workout hehe.

  • Thank you so much for this DIY!

    We have a tiny Christmas gift budget this year, but this would be a perfect gift for family! We just got married in April, so I’m thinking maybe doing a few wedding photos for the parents would be a lovely gift.

  • Do you place the photo face down on the canvas?

    This is exactly what I am looking for! THanks!

  • Sorry feel rather stupid, but is a laser copy the one you get from the photo kiosks in places like Walmart?

  • Great idea!

    What exactly do you mean by laser copy? Can it not be a glossy print? Just wanting to make sure I get this right before I use a canvas. Also concerned about the quality of print from a regular laser printer.


  • Tried this last night with regular printer paper, out of a laser printer. I can’t believe how good it looks. The color, the detail in the photograph—everything transferred perfectly.

    The only problem I ran into is that I must have rubbed the wet paper too hard, because some of the image rubbed off with it. Oh well, it still looks great.

    Thanks again for this post. It has inspired me in ways you can’t imagine.


  • I am sorry this may be a stupid question but what do you mean by “laser copy?” and also do you put the photo print side down on the canvas?

  • what kind of photo paper do you use? laser paper, jetink paper or real photo paper?

  • This looks like a great idea! For the photo, I saw it needs to be a “laser copy” but should it be on regular paper or photo paper. Also, do you think modge podge would work instead of the gel medium?

  • You can also use a piece of transparency paper to do a gel medium transfer like this. You just print out your image and follow the same steps, except you don’t have to wait over night. You just have to wait a couple of minutes for it to really “move” from one thing to the other, and then peel up the transparency. The result is really cool because the ink kind of floats in the gel medium if you coat it really thickly.

  • I’m wondering where we get a print made of our picture if we want to do a really large size, say a 24x 30?

  • I love this project. I’m thinking Christmas gifts. I have so many images I’d like to display and this is an affordable way to do that.

    Thanks for sharing

  • Can you tell me more about what type of printed image you used- “image you want to transfer (laser copy)” Is that on photo paper, or a home print out on plain copy paper… or an actual glossy print etc.? Thanks!!

  • what exactlly is a laser print. Can they make those at a photo lab?? LOVE this tutorial!!

  • Why not flip the picture on you computer before you print and then when you tansfer it, it will be correct

  • ok so I went to Walmart and printed off copies of our wedding photos on their paper followed your intructions and it didnt transfer at all is it because it was on the photo paper that walmart uses? really disappointed because i spent 20 on the canvas and then 4o for all my photos i got copyed 🙁 any advice or help? my email is [email protected]

    thanks Brooke

  • This is great. Definitely going to try it. Couple questions:

    Can I use Modge Podge for the medium? Will a print from just a regular inkjet be okay? And do you place the image ink side down or doesn’t it matter?

    Can’t wait to decorate with these 🙂

  • This is awesome! I’ve looked everywhere to buy the gel medium but can’t find it. Cold mod podge be used instead?

  • This is great! I was wondering if you can do this with anything? I’d like to transfer sheet music to canvas or a wooden block and then paint a quote on it…would this be possible or does it have to be photos for it to work? Thanks for your response!!

  • I just found your blog and am now bursting with ideas. Thank you!

    I really want to try this canvas printing technique but have a quick question. For the laser photo print, do you have it printed on photo paper or just regular paper?

  • trying this right now as i type! I’m trying it on pine with a colored picture. Ill let you know how it goes becaues im super excited about it! I dont know if i can wait the 24 hours for it to dry lol

  • So… This might be a silly question, but I REALLY want to try this!! What is Gel Medium…? And where can I get it? At the craft store or something??

  • I am very interested in trying this project. My only problen is I don’t know where to get a laser copy of a photo. Can you help me ou here.

  • I’m very interested in doing this, I just don’t know where to find a laser print of a photo. Can you help?

  • i have a silly question! when you laser copy the photo, do you laser copy to photo paper or to card stock or something else? I’m just curious if photos printed out could transfer as well… Thanks! (:

  • LOVE this! my friend just got married so i am thinking i am going to make one from her wedding!
    just wondering…is the picture printed on paper? or is it photo paper?

  • What kind of paper do you print the picture on and can you do it with just a regular printer?

  • I am so doing this and I have the perfect picture in mind! I can’t wait! Thanks for the idea!

  • This is amazing, i just transfered an image and used a blowdryer for about 15 minutes instead of waiting. It worked perfectly.
    I also used the corner of a wet tea towel to remove the paper instead of fingers. good if you want to protect the nails!
    Thanks for the idea!

  • I saw this on Pinterest. About how long does it take for the rubbing off part, and I’m assuming a laser copy is different from something you’d get printed at Wal-Mart? If a laser print is a special kind, then how much is it to get one printed? (And then you destroy it when you rub it off the canvas…)

  • I love this!! I added it to my list of “things to do after surgery” on pinterest… and I might have to look into a few more of your ideas! 🙂

    One Q – what do you print the photo on? Regular paper? Photo paper? I’ve seen some on tissue paper?

  • This is a great idea 🙂 Can I just use a photo that I printed on my home printer?

  • Hi, I just happened to come across your blog. Lovely project! I am planning on making some. I just had one question. Did you use the Liquitex Gloss Super Heavy Gel, or just the Gloss Heavy Gel? I didn’t know if there was a difference.

  • What do you mean by “Laser” copy of a photo, just a photo printed on regular paper on my printer? Help!! I have everything to do this but not sure on this part, thanks for sharing!!

  • By “laser copy,” I’m fairly certain she means just that: a copy made with a professional-grade laser copy machine.

    I’ve done portraits like these before, and you seriously just need a copy of the picture made on a copy machine. It can be on the cheapest, most plain paper ever. I honestly feel like that works the best!

    Inkjet, photo paper, and others will not work as well.

    I’m interested to hear how the photo transfer worked on the wood that someone commented about awhile back!

  • I am doing this for my mom’s 60th birthday present! I am SO excited. Do you need to use transfer paper or can it just be a laser copy on normal paper?

  • THIS is a great idea. I have the perfect set of pictures that I’d like to do. I’m not super familiar with laser printing … what is it about laser printing that will help this transfer to work properly?

  • Just tried this at home and LOVE it! I do have a question though, how did you keep the paper from warping from the gel medium? When I adhered the paper to the canvas with the gel medium it was nice and flat…..but when I went to check on it 30 minutes later the paper had warped from the moisture……what do you suggest? Thanks for your help and and AWESOME DIY 🙂

  • Do you need to have the print on photo paper or printed from your home laser printer on normal paper?

  • I did this yesterday and today and it came out incredibly foggy and so soft you can barely make out what the picture is. I followed the instructions and didn’t rub too much when I was taking off the paper. Any idea where it went wrong? 🙁

  • this is such a cute idea! i’m going to make one for a wedding gift. what kind of paper did you use for the photo? did you just print it on a laser jet printer?

  • Does anyone have any tips for how to get the paper entirely, entirely off at the end? I keep ending up with a thin, smudge-y layer of paper that is clouding up all my images.

  • This is a great idea! I have a question though. I saw it done on wood as well, but what paper do you use? Regular copy paper or photo paper? I really want to do this on either wood or canvas!

  • this is awesome. do you have to use laser photo prints or can you use photos printed from a photo shop?

  • Do you think this would work on wood at all? Like a smooth ply-wood? I have a large project in mind and this would definitely be cheaper than oil paints!

  • I LOVE this! But let me please ask you something: What do you mean with ‘gel medium (I used this kind from Liquidex)’? I am german and I own some gel for ‘decoupage’ . Is it the same?

  • I was wondering, did you have the picture developed somewhere like wal-mart or did you print it at home on photo paper? Also, what is the exact type of the liquitex? (When I click on the link there are several that show up, and the picture is unclear)


  • I just completed my first canvas and it turned out pretty good. When my son saw the end result, he replied “dang that looks pretty old.” Exactly the result I wanted! Thanks for the wonderful idea.

  • Gorgeous canvas! and GREAT tutorial. I do have a question though. I have an inkjet printer, where do you get the ‘laser copy’ made? Thank you!

  • I tried this twice and my photo came out pink both times. Tried it Sienna and Black and White. Could the gel medium I used be reacting with the ink? Any Ideas?

  • Inkjet printers use ink that soaks into the paper; laser printers use a toner that melts to the surface of the paper, which is why inkjet prints won’t work for this project.

  • I am confused when you say the print will be reversed…so you put the image face down onto the canvas, or up so you can see?

  • Love the idea! This may be a stupid question but do you print the photos onto special paper? I do have access to a Laser printer.


  • Super cute!!! I’m sure this is a dumb question but it seems like all the projects like this require a laser copy of the photo… does this mean just a copy of the photo from kinkos or what? Sorry for the ignorance :/ just want to make sure I’m doing everything right!

  • Just did this but to wood and it worked out awesome! Make sure you don’t get the picture too wet just damp.

  • Does the image need to be laser copy of regular paper or photo paper? I am guessing regular paper?

  • Did you use photo paper or plain printer paper? Love the idea and will try it with pics of my grandkids.

  • Have you tried this without using a laser copy photo? would a normal photo work do you think?

  • Hi,
    I saw a tutorial recently where a gentleman used an acrylic caulk to do this. What do you think of that? The gel medium is a little pricey for me right now and I’d really love to do this.

  • Do you mean a laser copy, like from a copy machine? And on regular paper? Wanting to make these for Christmas presents!

  • Question ~ do I understand the photo must be just copy you printed on the computer? Can you use a photograph that was done on professional photo paper – or is that too heavy? Thanks!

  • LOVE IT. I do have a question. When you say “laser copy” do you mean a home printer version? I was just wondering if you could use a photo that you ordered from a store and then transfered over, would that work?


  • is this technique only possible on fabric/canvas, or does it also work on hard, smooth surfaces like glass?

  • Hi! Love this!!!!! When you say laser copy do you mean a copy with a copy machine, or do you mean a computer print out???

  • I want to make these for Christmas gifts this year, this is such a great idea! Did you use just regular printer paper and inc?


  • Heellppp!! Every step went perfect until the rubbing – so much of the photo came off no matter how softly i rubbed. Do you want the paper to be saturated or just damp? Thanks for any tips!

  • When you say you will need a ‘laser copy’ what does that mean? Thanks! I can’t wait to try this out!

  • Most printers let you print your images as mirror images. That way when you transfer it to the canvas it will look correct.

  • Ok I have a dumb question. You said to make sure it is a laser copy of the
    Could I just use the prints I am getting from Walgreens? Do they develop photos with a laser?
    Inform me! Thanks!

  • I would love to make this for my sister using one of her wedding photos!! I just have a question, I don’t own a printer whatsoever. Did you have a laser printer or did you go to a photo place to get a print?

  • This is really cool. Do you have to use a laser printer? I don’t have a laser printer, but I have a photo printer…

  • hi there, juat wondered if this only worked with a laser print photo? will inkjet not have similar results?

    great idea by the way

  • Just a quick question, this may be dumb 😛 but do you use photo paper, or regular printer paper? I don’t want to mess this up, it’s a gift. Thanks!

  • This is awesome! But when I try it I’m going to reverse the image on my computer before I print it out so that way when I put it on the canvas it will be the right way! haha (:

  • if one were to add paint accent, would u do that before or after the transfer?

  • I’m having a hard time getting all of the paper off without it also taking the picture off. If I coat it will gel medium (after getting as much paper as I can off) will it then dry clear the way it looks when I spray it with water? Or will the paper dry underneath the gel medium?

  • I printed my picture on the laser printer, but it came out so light.

    Will lighter prints transfer well- if I’m printing it from Paint, is there any way to darken it up?

  • Love the concept, just one question. The “laser copy”, is just from an inkjet copy or home printer or is that something you order?

  • Just wondering about what a ‘laser copy’ of the photo is? I am thinking its a copy of your image but printed on a home printer? Thank you, great site.

  • I just did it. The picture looks really clear when wet and it seems Ive removed all of the paper…but everytime it dries it becomes white. Any suggestions?

  • What kind of paper did you print the picture on? I tried this and it didn’t turn out right! And does it have to be a laser printer?

  • I love this idea- but I don’t have any way to print a laser copy of the photo I want to use. And it needs to be on paper, correct? So maybe the Kinko’s near my apartment could do it- but I want to make sure I have the right kind of photo copy first.

  • This may be a silly question but where can you get laser copies done at? I would LOVE to do this! 🙂

  • I love this. Thanks for sharing… I’ve pinned it on pinterest, so that I can come back to your site for more details when I do some of these for my daughters upcoming graduation party.
    Thanks again!

  • very cool! I am wanting to try and see if this will work on ceramic/marble 4×4 tiles to make coasters. What sort of paper should the photo be laser printed on?

  • I have a question. What kind of paper do you need to have your photo printed on? I’m planning on doing these for Christmas gifts!

  • hi, i really want to try this before christmas?!?! what exactly do you mean by laser print photo? thanks!

  • Elsie- You say on here that you used a laser print. Will it work okay with a normal printer print??

    Thanks so much for your answer.


  • I don’t have a laser printer. Will this work with ink jet?
    Thanks! Beautiful project!

  • bummer. mine didn’t turn out. i left for an hour and it looked fine and came back and it look completely faded…like i hadn’t taken the paper off. i wonder if the actual transfer got TOO wet? if you have time and suggestions, can you email me [email protected]


  • What does laser copy mean exactly?? Tried it an didn’t work… but just used a normal photo

  • I have some stuff called Royal Coat Decoupage finish. Will this work? Sorry I am a beginner and Im still learning what I can use some things for lol. Thank you for your help.

  • When you say lazer copy, what kind of photo paper do you mean? Just regular computer paper?

  • I’m so glad I stumbled across this on pinterest. I’m obsessed with canvas art but it’s way too expensive for my blood. I’m going to give this a try as I already have a lot of canvases around the house. Thank you!!

  • Does it require stretched canvas? I have a canvas but im not sure if its stretched.

  • ok so this might be a dumb question but what do you mean by a laser copy of the photo? I have a laser printer, is it just a photo printed on normal computer paper using a laser printer?? Im new to the whole crafting scene and just need a little help 🙂

  • When you say the print needs to be a laser copy, does that mean you printed it just from a laser printer at home? Or did you actually get the picture printed somewhere?

  • does the print need to be a photocopy on normal paper or an actual picture on photo paper? thanks. really wanna do this and want to make sure im doin it right.

  • What Ive learned so far from doing this: be careful with the edges of the paper. Dont glue it all the way down, and dont let the gel medium get thick around the edges, it dries that way and looks icky. Leaving a border is not such a good idea. Wish I knew a way to finish the edges on a portrait of my grandson. Its an adorable photo but the edges are not even and I dont like the white. What to do?

  • Where do you get a “laser print”? Is that just a picture printed off of like a home laser printer??

  • Just wondering if it has to be a laser copy or if it can be done with an ink jet printed copy of the picture?

  • Thats awesome! When you say laser copy did you use the actual photo on photo paper or a copy of it?

  • Does it have to be a laser print? I have an inkjet printer. And if it DOES have to be a laser print is there anywhere that uses laser printers that I could have print a picture for me (office depot, kinkos, etc?) ??

  • Liquidex you can get from just about any craft store. Just ask for “gel medium” and they’ll direct you. I don’t think it REALLY matters which one you get (heavy, super heavy, gloss, matte, etc) It can be expensive but you don’t need much for this project so just buy a little thing. I don’t think mod podge would work as well as it is used to stick paper to various products so the paper may not rub all the way off. The gel medium is different and its prob best to use gel medium.

    A “laser copy” is just a copy of whatever image you want to use PRINTED ON A LASER (not inkjet) PRINTER ONTO PLAIN PAPER -NOT PHOTO PAPER-. This isn’t rocket science.

  • If you want to have the print on canvas the “right” direction, would it be possible to scan the photo onto your computer, and then reverse the image? Just seems like if you want the photo not to be reversed, there would be a way…just a thought!

  • What kind of picture do you use?? It says a laser print…is that just a picture printed on a home laser printer? Do you print it on regular paper or picture paper?

  • I’ve done this before with a piece of wood and both images that I did came out great! Such a fun and unique gift idea as well.

  • I did some black and white canvas photos….after I rubbed the paper off there is a yellow tint on the canvas. Can you tell me maybe why it’s doing that? Thanks!

  • does the photo have to be a laser copy? Where can i get a laser photo from? Can i go to a walmart or cvs and use that to transfer it on canvas?

  • Is the photo just printed on regular paper or photo paper? I’m totally trying this!

  • I just tried this idea, and for some reason in some spots the color pink is visible even though it is a black & white photo. Did you have this problem?

  • Ok so I’m trying to do this with some engagement pictures, and I wanna make sure I get it right. For the laser copy photo, where can I get that printed for me? Can Walmart/Walgreens do that? I see they do glossy or matte finish prints. Is a matte finish what I would want to have ideally?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for the great instructions!

  • I love this project!! I have a question, though. I’ve been stuck on step 5, and can not for the life of me get all of the paper off! I’ve even tried gently “scrubbing” with a wet washcloth, which helps, but I still have little paper fiber lint all over the canvas. Does the sealing coat help with that? Or am I missing something?

  • I have a question – when you say ‘laser copy’, are you referring to a computer-printed image?

  • This idea is really cool..I just tried it though & for some reason there is a tint of green. Did this happen to you?

  • I did this! Thanks for posting. It was fun and I did it with my students. I used Matter paper — can you also use GLOSSY? Also we came to the conclusion that if you use a thicker coat of gel medium it comes of easier the next day. It is time consuming and messy – but very cool and vintage looking!

    Thanks for the post.

  • Thanks for the adorable idea!

    Because I couldn’t find the Liquitex product, I used this one: . The rest I did exactly the same, but when I had to rub the paper off, I either pushed too hard, so I accidentally took off the trasnfer in some spots, or I pushed too gentle, so that very thin layers of paper remained on the canvas, making the transfer completely visible when wet, but extremly blurry, almost imposible to distinguish the image, as soon as it dried out.

    When I wet it again, the image was again very clear and visible, so I tried to rub off the extra layers of paper on some spots, but as I insisted, the transfer started comming off again.

    What do you think was the problem? Help? 🙂
    Thanks in advance!

  • So the image you use is not a printed photo, but instead a photo copy of a photo made on a laser printer/copier?

  • Awesome idea! What are the chances of me failing at this? Haha I would love to do this as a gift for my parents but I’m worried I’ll spend the money and completely screw it up.

  • I just finished making my own… It turned out absolutely awesome! Tearing all the paper off was super tough – I’m not positive I got it all off though 😉 Haha. Thanks so much for the instructions!!!

  • So is it printed on photo paper still? It has to laser not one that I order off shutterfly or anything?? I want to try but the photo ihave is one I ordered off shutterfly and afraid of eating a piece of canvas.

  • Elsie, I am so excited to try this!! These will make excellent gifts for my daughters’ best friends and the grandparents. You are an amazing, creative talent. Thank you for sharing!

  • Does the picture need to be printed on computer paper or can you use an actual picture?

  • Can’t wait to try this! Thanks for sharing such easy to understand directions. 🙂

  • I am going now to purchase the supplies… I can’t wait to try it…Thank you so much…Your photo is beautiful…

  • When you say laser copy of the image, do you mean just a copy on regular paper with a laser printer or on photo paper?

  • Really want to try this.. Will it work with printed photos from Walgreens, Target etc.? Or will the chemical process not work with it? Thanks!

  • hey i did this and after it dried it had a foggy sheen over the photo that i could not get to go away. Did you run into this problem and do you have suggestions?

  • this is amazing and i’d love to try it! is there an alternative to the glue you use? i’m from the uk and shipping for the glue alone to here is around £10!
    thanks x

  • Is there a particular type of photo paper to use? Love the idea but when I tried it the paper wouldn’t stay saturated enough to peel it away.

  • What kind of paper did you use?! I have a laser printer, but should I print on regular paper or photo paper?!

  • Do you use like regular computer paper… I just did it and realized i used photo paper… don’t think thats gonna work! DANGIT.

  • So I know this is probably a stupid question, but what is a laser copy? And what kind of paper do you use? I am making some of these for Christams gifts!

  • I tried this and the contrast in the image is gone… the black is very gray. The image looked nice when wet but not when it is dry. Elsie’s example image has a lot of contrast in it.

    Does applying the gel medium on top darken the black in the image?


  • So cute!!! I am going to try this! Thanks for sharing:) You are always such an inspiration:)

  • Is this printed on just regular computer paper?? I tried a version of this where you printed it onto tissue paper and mod podge it on the canvas, but the tissue is so delicate I had a lot of wrinkles and a few smudges.

  • extremely difficult and a waste of time..

    ruined and just ended up modpodging the picture on the block of wood. easy as that.

  • the photo’s, are they paper? or that glossy photo paper stuff, want to make this for my sister, i love it 😀 x

  • How did you make it so the print didn’t come off? I tried it and some of my print came off, also does it looker nicer when it dries?

  • I tried this and couldn’t get it to work for some reason 🙁 I followed the directions and can’t figure out where I went wrong? Now I just have pictures glued backwards to a canvas.

  • definitely doing this one, so excited. do contrasty images work best? and is it photo paper? i’m kind of persnickety, must know all details ^_^ these shall be x-masy presents!

  • I tried this, and I couldn’t get it to work. can you be more specific on what kind of paper/printer to use? I tried it with photo paper and printer paper and neither worked.

  • guess i’m not that persnickety since EVERYONE asked the same question, ha! we just happen to have both a color and b&w laser printer where i work so yay me! i’m going to get cracking.

  • I was wondering, as a European reader, would PVA glue be the same as the gel medium you suggested?

  • I love this idea, but I have a question! I drew a picture for my boyfriend and I was thinking about transferring the drawing (Which is just a piece of computer paper drawn with a pencil and colored with color pencils) Would this transfer well since it’s not inked?

    Thank you!

  • I did a search on Liquidex – what is the difference between this and Mod Podge? Could you use that instead? Love this Idea – Gonna give it a try!

  • Its amazing! But I must say I’m trying it right now and the rubbing it off stage is harder than I thought. Any tips?

  • If you don’t want the picture to be reversed, just print the laser copy in reverse. Select T-Shirt Transfer or some other reversed print option in your printer settings, or if you have a photoshop like application just flip or mirror the image so that it’s reversed on your screen and print.

    BUT – WHAT IS THIS GEL you speak of? If I go into a hobby store and say I want medium gel are they going to look at me crazy?

  • Quick question. Did you use photo paper? I’m assuming you did but I guess I was just a little unclear on that part

  • Looks great!
    Did anyone already try if it also works with ink-jet prints and a water-based medium?
    i don’t have a laserprinter..?


  • this is the best! question though: when you say Laser Copy of the photo what does that mean? Do I have to make a copy on a laser printer? If so does the type of paper I use matter?

  • Hi Just found you today though the article in Create for Less. And have spent the last hour going through the site, love it, love it!! I have attempted something similar to this, but want to ask, what type of paper are you using? Is it matted or glossy photo paper?

  • Hello! I love your creations and I would love to do this. I am from Mexico and here do not sell “Gel Liquidex” could be replaced by other glue? Answer me please my question, I really love to do this painting ♥

  • Where did you get a laser print? Is this something I can just get done at any photo kiosk?

  • This is wonderful! I have one small question though! Does mode podge work for this? Also, Can i transfer images from regular printer paper to the canvas? Thank you so much! This stuff is beautiful!

  • I discovered this post via pinterest a few days ago and decided to try it. My canvas is drying now, so we’ll how it turns out….thanks for sharing!

  • This will sound silly for all you creative people, but for this newby, can someone please explain what you mean by (laser copy)?

  • cool idea! i will definitely try this! is the gel medium you used the same as a transfer medium?

  • It’s really super cute!! Just a question: can you explain what exactly is gel medium, please? Is it kind of glue? I dont know if we have it in italy, maybe we do, but i dont know… Thank you soooo much, and wish you a great 2012! I hope to start the new year making this fantastic canvas portrait!!
    hugs&kisses from rome, italy

  • Sorry to sound ignorant, but what do you mean by laser copy of the image? Do you take the original photo somewhere that has a laser copier?

  • This really is a cool idea. Just wondering, can you use any picture? Like a regular photo? Thanks!

  • what type of paper did you print the photo on? and can you just print it at home on your printer, or do you have to take it to a copy store?

  • Love this! So, by laser print…you mean a photographic print from your laser printer on regular thin paper, or an actual photographic print on photo paper? Help!!:)/Johanna

  • I went to try this, but I think I ran into a few bumps. Is your laser image printed on paper or regular photo paper from the store? I had issues rubbing off the paper and was not sure what you suggested.

  • I tried to do this and my photo didn’t come off like you explained. A laser copy is printed from your computer or a professional lab? Also, when you lay down your copy you put the photo down on the Liquidex, right? Do you put more liquidex over the back of the photo?

  • Can you use a picture on regular computer paper or does it need to be printed off on photo paper?

  • I can’t wait to try this! My daughter is getting married in June and I would like to take a few of their pictures and fix them for her!

  • I just finished my second attempt. The first didn’t turn out so well so I thought I’d share what I found. 1. Regular white paper from a laser printer. 2. When you spray it with water, give the first intial spray a good coat and let it soak in. 3. Rub the remaining paper off with your middle or ring finger (you don’t use as much pressure). 4. I also dipped my finger in water when it was getting dry and there wasn’t much paper remaining. Hope these things help! It works great, going to try it on wood next :).

  • Good evening Elsie,

    I discovered your blog two days ago and now i’m mad about it…
    to read it often will make me improve my english, i’m french and i don’t have often the opportunity to speak or write english.
    I’m very keen on sewing, cooking and i found a lot of good ideas there yet


  • What is a laser print and what kind of paper did you print onto?? I want to do this so bad.. Thank you

  • I just tried doing this. It was printed onto a normal piece of paper, and it was looking good, but after it dried, it looked foggy. Like there was still paper on it. However, if I try to rub more, it just takes off the picture. Did it still look foggy even though a little visible when you were done? I don’t know if I go ahead and put on the coat of gel medium if it’ll show up after that and not be foggy anymore.

  • I love this idea, where did you get a lazor print. I have called around town and no one uses lazor printers. Thanks for the great ideas! Can’t wait to try this!

  • Okay, so I’ve tried this twice now and it came out bad both times. The first time it was like I was looking at the photo through a cloud, so I figured I didn’t take enough of the paper off. So the second time, I rubbed more and too much came off. But it doesn’t even look crisp in the parts where it didn’t come off. So I came back and read the instructions. I see you say it needs to be a laser copy. I think my in-laws have an ink jet. Do you think that could be the difference? Thanks! Can’t wait to make one the comes out right!

  • I just tried this project & had a big fail, the entire image just peeled off – does it matter what type of paper the laser image is printed on? I used photo paper, and the image was in color. The canvas was also laminated to a board – is this my problem? Any tips would be super appreciated as I’m living overseas in Kenya & don’t have access to any craft stores.

  • What kind of paper was the photo printed on? I printed my B&W on regular copy paper – in retrospect, I should have selected “grayscale” when printing because even thought it was black and white the image has tones of red and green.

    The paper seemed to come off correctly but because of the odd color distortion I was wondering if maybe I had done something else wrong.

  • Awesome idea! Just one question…does it matter what kind of paper I use? Like can it just be regular printer paper or does it need to be photo paper?

  • This is very adorable..I attempted it without any luck:( is there a certain type of paper you print the photo onto? I used my color injet printer on photo paper…It dryed overnight and when I peeled it off, nothing stuck to the canvas:( Any extra tips would be greatly apperciated!!!

  • Does it have to be a laser print? Does Staples or Walmart use laser printers for their pictures?

  • do you just use a regular photo that you print like at wal greens from your camera

  • I combined this with your Lyric Wall Art idea! This blog has been such an inspiration to me. Thank you 🙂

  • I took a friend’s engagement photo and made one as part of their wedding gift. It is beautiful. I struggled with the pace…I got the paper TOO wet to start with and then the ink came up, but when I went MUCH slower…the effect was rustic rather than blotchy. It took me a couple hours to remove the paper completely. Do you have a recommendation for making that step less time-consuming? I was probably doing something wrong.

  • You really can’t do this with a colored photo for all who asked above. The tri color process used in printers and most copiers will leave you with only the top layer of color once you’ve peeled the paper off. I tried it yesterday without thinking about it. If you print your image at home especially, make sure your printer is set to black ink only. I will be posting the results of the one I redid later this week if anyone wants to see the results. – Leah

  • i m lost at what kind of paper to print pic on ..are u using printable fabric or photo paper

  • For the photo do you have it printed on regular photo paper or plain white paper

  • would you be able to use prints from an inkjet printer? whats the difference betwwen laser and injet(or walmart prints)

  • This looks awesome… when you say a laser copy of the photo what do you mean exactly. Just because right now I basically get all my images printed at walgreens or something.

  • You are incredibly talented. Wow. Thank you so very much for sharing your talents 😀

  • Does the photo have to be a laser print, or can it be from a desk jet printer?

  • What kind of paper is used? I am just becoming crafty and not quite sure what should be used as it wasn’t listed in what we’d need.

  • I just found this post- this is so neat! Definitely doing….how/where do you get a laser copy of a photo?


  • This may be a stupid question, but if I’m going to try this, I want to be sure I’m using the correct materials – when you say laser copy of the photo, do you just mean an 8X10 photo or what do you mean by laser copy?

  • Hey just wondering- is this copied on photo paper or just plain white paper? For the picture- before you put it on canvas !

  • Love the pillow video.
    So cute and easy tho I might just have to watch the video again to be sure. lol
    Think I’ll make these pillows for my 2 granddaughters who both have birthdays soon. They’re getting harder to buy for, way out of our budgets, so I try to make them things.

  • When you say laser print do you just mean a black and white copier? Do yo use regular paper to print the picture on?


  • So I tried this but I can’t get the last layer of the picture to come off…any suggestions?

  • So I tried this and I can’t get the last layer of the picture to come off…any suggestions?

  • Its gorgeous! Seeing endless ideas with this! I am wondering though how you can get a laser copied image? Thanks for your help

  • Wow, this is fantastic. I’ll be going straight to Michaels after work!
    Thanks for the inspiration.

  • I want to try this project but I can’t find gel medium in the craft store or hardware (I live in the Philippines). Is there an alternative? Or is it called by another name?

  • Can you tell me if Mod Podge is the same thing as the Liquitex? I have some of that on hand and would like to try it.

  • just tried with a color copy, turned out just as cool as the b&w. very cool and easy ! Thanks for sharing!

  • I have been wanting to put my photos of the California sunset on canvas forever. Thank you so much.

  • Can I ask a dumb question?? How did you format your photo to be 8 x 10. I am having a heck of a time doing that!
    Lovely idea and tutorial 🙂

  • When you print the photo does it matter what kind of paper you laser copy it on? Is regular paper ok or does it have to be photo paper?

  • I tried this but didn’t work. Do I use regular paper or photo paper???? I used photo n it wasn’t getting wet n when it did it was peeling off the pic??? Help????

    [email protected]
    Please let me know.

  • I used to do that all the time back in college! I think I’ll start doing it again! REally loved it at the time! 🙂

  • Something I descovered… if you print onto a transparency sheet, you can get a great transfer without having to peel all the paper off! you can still make it have a distressed look by not pressing it down into the gel medium evenly, I actually wanted a pretty clean transfer so I used a brayer to smooth out and remove any bubbles.

  • I was wondering what kind of paper you need to print the photo on? Regular paper or actual picture paper??

  • I dont understand what
    kind of gel? where do you get it? I want to try this!

  • Does it work with an ink jet copy?
    I love the project but don’t have a laser copier so I would be a laser copy at a copy store?

    Love the project! Can’t wait to try it!

  • hi there elsie! wondering if inkjet printed copies would be alright to use instead of a laser copy. thanks in advance!

  • Having trouble getting all the paper off and getting a clear image. Any suggestion whatI may be doing wrong.

  • I tried this but the pic isn’t quite working… did yo use matte or glossy? does it matter

  • I am absolutely going to try this for my office, I love the look. Plus, I have the perfect photos in mind. I’ll let you know how they turn out!

  • What is the picture you used printed on? a professional print or just on normal paper that I would print on my home laser printer?

  • This is wonderful. I think a series of these would be perfect for my wedding- a lovely alternative to the cliche slideshow. Thank you 🙂

  • Maybe a total blonde question, should the photo be on the transfer paper or just a photocopy?

    Thanks for the great tip!

  • I tried this and am having a problem with it- I have sprayed and rubbed the paper off my canvas at least 5 times, and every time it dries, you can see all the paper left on it, so the whole photo is extremely faded. Is there a fix for this?

  • Ive been wanting to try this! Thanks for the instuctions! and also Love you Name!! My baby Girl is named after my mother who is also Elsie!!You never hear the name too much!

  • Lovely! One question! Could you use Modge Podge as the gel medium for this, or no?

  • Wow I love this so much! Do you think doing this on a larger canvas with multiple pictures would work?


  • I’ve been looking for an idea like this-I love canvas photos. But does it work with an inkjet printer or only a laser printer?

  • This is so great! I tried this project this past weekend and when I applied the last top coat of gel medium it stayed a hazy white. Is this normal and will take a while to go away or did i do something wrong? It has been sitting for 24 hours and still has that white haze on it. I used the brand you recommended. I would love some insight on this please. Thanks.

  • Just thanks…Right now is what I need, nice things made by someone like you ;). It’s being a hard time and your blog make it easier.

    xoxo from Madrid(Spain)

  • I absolutely loved this idea and couldn’t wait to try it out… but I’m not sure where I went wrong because it didn’t turn out the way yours did. Can you specify what type of paper your photo was printed on and exactly what kind of gel medium you used? I was a bit overwhelmed by the options when looking at my local craft store.

    Thank you!!

  • I am planning on trying this and I was wondering if Mod Podge will work for the transfering of the photo?

  • can just print the pic in reverse from the puter. just do mirror image ….. used to do this with fabric transfers….

  • do you know if it works with normal print (deskjet/inktjet)??

    xx from holland 🙂

  • I only have an Inkjet printer?? Where can I have photos printed with a laser printer?

  • Hey there. i cant wait to try this. just one question. I live in New Zealand and cant come accross any gell. where would you recommend i look for it? and if it is a different name, then how would i explain it?! thanks so much! 🙂

  • many kinds of gel medium. Gloss, acriylic not sure what to order? thanks Jan

  • Great idea thanks for sharing!i love crafts and i’m always looking for new ways of being creative…you have inspired me!:)

  • how do i get a laser copy of a photo? and is stretch canvas something i could find a walmart?

  • Hi, this is great – thanks for the idea! I’m curious, will this also work on other surfaces, such as paper materials, or does it only work on canvas and fabric?) Thanks in advance for your help!

  • I don’t know what I’m doing wrong…. mine keep turning out bad. What kind of paper are you using? I’m getting a bunch of wrinkles in them as well as the detail not being very great. Please tell me what I’m doing wrong. there was ONE that turned out wonderfully. But, it’s so hit and miss. I try doing this with wood, but the faces blend into the wood. ugh, this is so frustrating me so badly

  • I am confuse what you mean by lazer copy. Can you explain this to me? Thank you. I love this project!

  • So I tried this and It dosent work for me, I would really really like to do this so can you help me understand what I am doing wrong?

  • I love this awesome idea!! I need to have the picture enlarged first to desired size? I am sure thats a yes..but I still have to make sure.

  • This works great with colored pictures. The only bad thing is the few imperfections are quite noticeable but are small. Just be gentle when rubbing and very generous with the water. Love


    HER “SPECIAL” DAY IS JUNE 23RD, 2012!!!


  • Will it work with photos printed Forman inkjet printer? Is it just printed on regular printer paper? Thanks! This is gorgeous!

  • Question: what will happen if I print the pic on an inkjet printer and not laser copy?

    I only have inkjet printers, as do my friends.


  • Does it matter what kind of photo paper is used? because i am trying it right now (step #5, where you wet the surface and rub the paper off) and it isn’t coming off! blurgh!

  • This looks relatively easy and so cute! Have you happened to try to overlay two pictures? i.e., a picture to put into the background, and then subjects? I assume it would be possible to lay the gel down, and your background picture, and such. And then instead of doing the gel to seal it, it’s a gel to put the second picture over…?

  • I did this last night with color! Works beautifully! Thank you for the information!!!!!

  • Thanks, Elsie! I loved this as soon as I saw it and then finally got around to making it for a Pinterest Challenge this week. 🙂 Thanks for the great tutorial and idea. I’m excited to make more for some gifts.

  • Can you do this with an actual photo on photo paper or does it have to be like a picture you print off on regular computer paper?

  • Just wondering what you mean exactly when you say “Lazer copy”? Do you put it on photo paper and will just an ink jet home printer at home work?!

  • Probably a stupid question but do you use a regular photograph or a laser ink-jet type photo you print on printer paper?

  • Ok 3 canvas peices later and mine still isn’t coming out right! The first 2 was cuz I had no patience to wait I was too excited lol…thought for sure the 3rd would come out…
    the 3rd one the coloring was perfect but some how like one whole face came off the image when I rubbed…what am I doing wrong!? Please help…and email me because I have no idea how to check back here lol

  • I tried it and it didn’t work 🙁 I printed my photo at wallgreens? Do i just print on a regular piece of paper or photo paper?

  • I tried it and it didn’t work. I printed my picture at Wallgreens, is it not suppose to be on photo paper?

  • What do you mean by laser copy? A picture printed at home on photo paper? Love this! Can’t wait to try!

  • I have a canvas but it has already been painted on. Would it work if I painted it over white and then tried the photo process?

  • This seems really neat!
    I have a canvas but it has already been painted on. Will this still work if I just paint over my canvas with white paint then try it?

  • Would this still work if I had a canvas that was already painted and I painted it over with white paint?

  • hello this is a wounderful idea i know this is a few months old but can you use mod podge? i have mode podge gloss and was wondering if it will work the same way thanks for the tips

  • I’ve tried this method on wood… I couldn’t make all of the paper come off. I want to do this on canvas, but am afraid of the same result. Any suggestions?

  • try printing picture on tissue paper as well. Tape to card stock and run it through your printer. Apply picture onto canvas. I’ve made tons! Love it!

  • I am sooo excited I came across this post! What a wonderful blog! I wonder, when you say you used a laser copy, does this mean a photo you photocopied onto paper? or an actual picture on picture paper? I suppose maybe you cannot transfer an image off of photo paper?? hhmmmm….thank you for any help ((:

  • just wondering if this was a pic you photocopied onto regular paper using a photocopier? could the image be transferred to canvas if it was a regular color photo on picture paper? thanks (;

  • I made one for my boyfriend for valentine’s day and he loved it. Thanks so much for the inexpensive and heartfelt idea 🙂

  • I’d love to try this! Just one question: when I print my photo on the laser printer, I’m assuming I use regular paper as opposed to photo paper… right?

  • I have a photo copier but it’s not a laser photo copier. Does that make a difference? My husband said he thought the ink would run. Do you know if it has to be laser or can it be ink jet?

  • I stumbled into this and was SO excited to see this! I have been looking for methods to do canvas prints of some of my digitized artwork and was hoping to donit at home rather have a printing company do it. You have just become my homecraft hero. 🙂

  • Is there a special type of paper that the image should be on? For example, photo paper, regular paper or a special transfer paper?

  • Love the idea! Question though…did you laser print the pictures on printer paper or photo paper.

  • This is such a cool idea!!!
    But I was wondering if you used like an actual picture from like walmart or costco or if you printed it onto paper from your own computer?

  • Elsie, could you please tell me which gel medium you used exactly? i live in a country where we don’t really have access to these things, so i’ll definitely have to order it from amazon, but the list you linked is endless, and i guess they all serve different purposes.

  • Did this project last night. Tips and lessons learned.
    1. Don’t forget your image is reversed LOL. I put a very nice saying on one of my photos to realize this morning that it is all backwards. Whoops… I’ll paint over.
    2. I used one of those orange nail emery blocks from the pedicure shop to gently remove the paper. I’m not very patient and needed a tool. It worked great to gently take off the paper.
    3. When I got all the paper off I took the canvas to the sink and ran it under gentle stream of cold water and got the last of the paper off and got it nice and clean for gel top coat.

    Thanks for the wonderful project!

  • Absolutely love this! have just finished it my first try and apart from a few holes it’s turned out great 🙂

  • I just tried it but I’m having trouble getting all the paper off. It makes a very hazy image. Any suggestions?

  • This is awesome totally wanna try!!!
    But what kind of photo do you use? Is it just a regular picture or a printed one off the computer to paper?

  • This might sound like a stupid question but I’m new to the DIY world 🙂 did you just print your photo on a laser printer or take it somewhere to be printed?

  • love this idea! question – when you say Laser Copy of the photo, do you just mean a picture that’s printed from a laser printer? (sorry, i just want to make sure I have the right material so I don’t screw it up!)

  • Where did you get your canvas and laser photo? I really want to try this.. It’s super cute!

  • I can’t wait to try this but I was wondering what a laser copy picture is and where you get your canvas?

  • YOU are LIVING MY DREAM! Thank you for sharing. I’d like to become your blog friend.

    ottotot, bab’z

  • What kind of paper do you use photo, regular copy paper???????

  • You can also use wintergreen oil to transfer images. It works extremely well, but smells very strong.

  • stumbled upon this and just wanted to say thank you so much for the inspiration! I transferred print outs of photos I took of my kids’ preschool and kindergarten art projects. Super cool to turn them into ‘high’ art with a personal touch. I did color, and I can’t believe my kids’ crayon and marker drawings now look like beautiful, bright museum paintings!

  • Help! What is the difference between the lasar photo and regular photo? Is this just a poster print? I would like to try this but just need to know what kind of photo because my printer cant do anything this large.

  • this is amazing…. but I have a question… you say to use a laser print… I only have a ink jet…. where can I get a laser print??


  • I absolutely love this project! I was too excited about getting it started, that I didn’t pay attention to what TYPE of liquitex to buy. It turns out that the ‘glazing medium’ works really well too! Thanks for such a wonderful idea!

  • i tried this, my photo didn’t work… where can i print photos to help me do this project?

  • Hi guys, great blog, I use a version of this chemical called dylon image maker(its for making t-shirts) you can paint/draw etc underneath..I’m sure you could try this with your stuff too.. a close up of where i used a black and white photocopy and the colour was from paint beneath..hope this helps you expand your experimentation..tip: can be lovely to reproduce “tinted” photogrpah effect on old black and white photos

  • i love doing this! i incorporate a lot of photos in my mixed media paintings. i’ve never tried just doing a photo by itself. must try!

  • This may be a silly question…but where do you get the laser jet copy from??

  • I just tried this today, thank you for this creative idea. So many fantastic artistic inspirations here for a girl who is reconnecting with her inner artist/writer. THANK YOU

  • Need some help! My image transferred beautifully but when it dried it looks covered in fog. I spray it down with water again and it looks great again until it dries. I checked my steps over and over again and to my knowledge followed your directions. What am I missing?
    Thank You

  • I trying this out! What type of paper should the original photo be on? I was going to use regular glossy photo paper but it looks like in your tutotial photo’s to be a thinner paper.

  • Hello, I love this and am going to do it…wondering tho…do you use pictures that are printed on photo paper? or regular computer paper?? wondering because of the ‘rub’ off step…not sure if premium photo paper will rub off??


  • Does it matter what finish the photos are (matte, gloss, etc) i tried to use this technique to transfer a photo onto wood and didn’t have good luck. maybe canvas would be easier? i just don’t want to spend the money on canvas and have it not work out! thanks

  • Kind of a stupid question…. do you use a normal photo? or do you need a special print? im confused by the laser copy and photocopy wording and not quite sure. Really want to do this anyone able to help?

  • Posted on The danger to America is not Barack Hussein Obama but a cerizinty capable of entrusting a man like him with the Presidency. It will be far easier to limit and undo the follies of an Obama presidency than to restore the necessary common sense and good judgment to a depraved electorate willing to have such a man for their president. The problem is much deeper and far more serious than Mr. Obama, who is a mere symptom of what ails America . Blaming the prince of the fools should not blind anyone to the vast confederacy of fools that made him their prince. The Republic can survive a Barack Hussein Obama, who is, after all, merely a fool. It is less likely to survive a multitude of fools such as those who made him their president.

  • I have a question… I went to Target and had 2 8x10s printed and went through step one and this morning when I went to remove the paper, the whole image ended up coming off. I do not understand!! AH! Help please

  • Do use an actual photo or a printer ink copy? You mentined a laser copy, that’s why I ask. I am excited to try this.

  • Did you ever get to a point where it was just shiny material and stopped being able to rub anymore off? I think I hit a plateau and can’t take off anymore layers :/ did this happen with anyone else?

  • I am having trouble finding Liquidex. Can anyone tell me where I can buy it or another brand (other than online)? Thanks!


  • Awesome idea. LOVE LOVE LOVE! Can’t wait to try it out and make amazing gifts and especially some for myself. Thankyou

  • I tried this and had a terrible time getting all of the paper off, and also with smearing. Any advice?

  • The picture looks really great! I have a question, does the picture have to be printed on a laser printer? And, what is the printing media, transfer paper or photo paper?” or something else? Thanks!

  • Not surprisingly, I immediately went to Amazon to purchase the gel and find that they offer more than one version. Can you tell me exactly which one you used? I can’t wait to try this.

    Thanks, Debra

  • Thank you so much for the tutorial. I have gone a bit crazy and made up about 6 canvases so far, the problem that I’m having is once the picture dries there is a white film over the top of the image, I wipe it down but it comes back when it’s dry. I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong!!

  • Hi

    I just want to find out do you have to print the image on photo paper or should it be normal paper?

  • 苫小牧海上保安署によると、釣り客4人はいずれも登別市桜木町に住む釣り仲間で、死亡したのは自営業の中原和彦さん(64)と会社員の門田富夫さん(64)。行方不明は無職の菊池久男さん(65)。船長の沢田さんと、アルバイトの渡辺博文さん(67)は低体温症の症状があるが、命に別条はないという。

  • I love this idea. I have a question though… would modge podge work just as well, or do you recommend using the gel medium?

  • I just did. It work not perfect but your are right u can’t rUb to hard. Next one will be better. Thanks for sharing this technique

  • Is a laser copy the same as a photo print that you would order from walgreens or is it a special kind of printing. Can I use a developed photo that I have, like just a regular photograph?

  • Does this transfer also work with colored pictures? And can you transfer it onto scrapbook paper? Thank you for the greeat idea!

  • Does the print have to be printed on photo paper OR reg printer paper? I love love love the idea!
    Also, will Mod Podge work for the gel medium on gesso board?

  • Does the photo need to be printed on photo paper? Sorry I didn’t understand when you said laser copy.

  • Does the picture need to be printed on photo paper? Sorry didn’t understand when you said laser copy. I just love the idea!

  • Love it and tried it today! So how do you keep the black ink from running together and making the white spaces gray?

  • I did this and after it was all dry it has a purplish white glow to it, is there something I can do to make it more clear and glossy?

  • Thank you so much for sharing. I’ve seen directions for the transfers before but they weren’t as “doable” as yours! I cant wait to try it!

  • Did you just use a laser copy from your printer? Using regular copy paper? Or is there a special kind of paper I need to use?

  • What a great idea!!! Ok, I tried this last night and I must have got the wrong laser copy because it did not work. What did you use for a print? I used some family pictures that we had and it did not work. Please let me know any suggestions you have?

  • this is so cool! I cant wait to try this! Did initially print the photo image on photo paper or printer paper?

  • Wondeful idea! I’m extremely intrigued and I want to try this myself.
    I googled the Liquitex stuff you used, and came up with a few more results than I was expecting. Any chance you could tell me WHICH one you used specifically?
    Thanks so much!

  • First this idea is AWESOME….but I do have perhaps a silly question…. When you are talking about a laser copy does that mean a photo copy or printed from my computer printer??? Thanks for your help !!!!!! Can’t wait to try !!!!!

  • what do you mean by ‘gel’ and ‘laser copy’ (is it printed by computer printer?) i’m spanish-speaking, from Argentina, but love the blog and would love to try it !!

  • Just wondering what exactly is a laser print? Is it different than a regular picture you would have printed at any store?

  • This same process works on wood, as well, and looks beautiful when the texture of the grain shows through a little bit. I didn’t know it worked on canvas too! The way I print on canvas is a lot more difficult. Thanks for making life easier!!

  • Hi I love this idea!! I was wondering if this would work on watercolor paper as well…or would it only work on canvas?

  • Hi! I was wondering what you meant by “laser copy”? (Sorry, I’m new to the world of crafting and all things Pinterest.)

  • I’m so glad that I found this space, so have so many fun ideas! I’m so excited to try this out during the holidays hehe but I was wondering if the images needed to be a laser copy. Will the effect be the same if I were to use normal images on paper? Thanks for sharing and I’ll surely be following this space for more interesting DIYs 🙂

  • Hey there,

    I just tried your technique and it didn’t really come out. What kind of paper was your photo printed on? Your image seems so clear whereas mine is mottled and blurred. I used a simple black and white picture too.

    Any thoughts would be helpful! Thanks!

  • do you just get the photo printed from cvs or do you print it on normal paper?

  • So is this possible with color pictures if the color saturation is increased?

  • Did you use regular printer paper or the special glossy type photo paper? This is a great tutorial. Thank you for sharing!

  • Hey there,

    I love your project and recently tried it. However, my transfer definitely did not look like yours. I was wondering what kind of paper was your photo printed out. I couldn’t get all the paper off of my canvas and the photo ended up being pretty smudged. Any suggestions would be helpful.


  • This is gorgeous, and simple! I’ve used transfer gel for other things, but i’ve never thought of using it for a full sized image! I’m so inspired!!!!! I’m a Denver Realtor and I might just use this idea to stage the houses I’m working on. Nice personal touch 😉

  • I’m totally going to try this out! When you say laser copy of a photo, what exactly do you mean? Would an 8×10 printed out from riteAid work?

  • the photo copy is on picture paper not a ‘photo copy” from a copy machine right?

  • I love this idea!!! I can’t wait to try it! I have some what of a silly question; Is a laser copy just a picture printed from a regualr printer? Or do you have to go to like staples or office depot to have one made? thank you for your time.

  • Actually, your photo would do well as a watercolor cubaese you could “swim” that tree line into a wet sky and get neat effects.However, I would think the BEST way to handle this picture is to do it in shades of grey with a pencil. Using a soft 6B pencil and a hard 6H pencil alternating the details. The path/road winding up the hill is great. However, your photo is very monotone. There aren’t intensive whites or intensive blacks. Squint at the photo and 80% of it is the same value. It has a neat moody feel to it .which would lend itself best in pencil/graphite. If you choose paints, you have a very high chance of getting a lot of muddy colors that’s why I vote for a black and white pencil drawing. Just my humble opinion! Best wishes .References :

  • Good tpciure!Hair. Ha, ha. Your hair in that tpciure looks pretty darn good to me. I have that curly, curly hair that will never look kempt. Seriously. I wake up looking like sideshow bob (simpsons show) And that’s no joke.LA. Hmmm. I don’t have anything nice to say about that. No offense to LA girls, but I’m an East Coast, cold loving, prefer the mountains wilderness girl. Unfortunetly I only have the East Coast thing going for me right now with 3 months of cold.

  • can you use a photo from like walmart or does it need to be printed on paper?

  • I just created one of these, but the picture is very faint and seems to be disappearing even more. I left to gel to dry for six hours. How to I get the colors to stay and not fade?

  • What works better, if your laser print is on photo paper, or regular paper? Such a great idea, I’m definitely going to try this!

  • Love it and going to try it soon, I’ve been looking at the gel mediums and there’s afew different kinds,matte, acrylic, semi gloss, which do I use??

  • this is awesome! what is a laser copy? a normal photo or a printed out from a printer?

  • I am so excited to try this. But i do have a quick question for you. I want to transfer a black and white photo to canvas but I want the canvas to be black. Can I paint the canvas and then transfer the picture to it??