As part of my current work i have been using photocopies of my drawings and photos and transferring them onto paper blocks to make them easier to paint on, since I am using a lot of water which will warp the paper.
This technique is something I was taught in high school.
To do this I print out images or photocopy my work using a laser printer, and then using masking tape to hold it in place (image side down) on the paper block. To transfer the image, I use cellulose thinners. This is painted in small areas on the back of the image, and then using the back of the paint brush I scratch as the area to transfer it onto the image.
Cellulose thinners can cause headaches if you spend too long inhaling the fumes, so this should be done somewhere well ventilated, I also place the lid back on top when I’m not dipping my paintbrush.
All images will be backwards when transferred so if the orientation is important it may need to be flipped before printing.
This technique can be used to collage images together, by transferring them together or even on top of each other.
Although detail is lost when doing this, especially if its not a particularly clear or highly contrasting image, it creates a somewhat aged looking effect, which I like. It can also be worked back into, with paint pen, pencil etc to bring back some definition.
An artist who had used image transfers in their work is Rauschenberg.
Initially I was doing this to preserve biro drawing which took hours to make, as I didn’t want to destroy them by adding paint and potentially wating hours of work if they went wrong, however I found that I really like the effect given by transferring the images. It makes the drawing look soft and somewhat ages and creates a good base for adding back detail and colour with paint