My sisters remember my grandfather’s barn. I don’t. Roscoe and Inez died before I was born, and I never visited their house in Fort Payne. When they lived there, Roscoe was a dairy farmer. He kept his cows in the barn.
On a trip last May to visit old family sites, we pulled over to see the old place. “It’s Roscoe’s barn,” they said. “It’s still there.”
We took a few quick photos on our smartphones. This one was mine.
For months, this photo was just one of the images taking up a little memory in my gallery. What can you do with something like that anyway – a poor-quality picture of a barn in a field with power lines in the scene, and a whole lot of road at the bottom? My sisters did not have much sentimental attachment to the electrical supply and asphalt, as far as I know. Just the barn.
In case, here’s what I did with it. Christmas was upon us, and I was giving some hand-crafted gifts to family members. And I remembered that barn. So I transferred the photo to a canvas panel (twice) and gave the pieces to my sisters. It was really easy, and here are the steps I took:
Step 1: Crop the photo. As I mentioned, the image from my smartphone was of a wide shot with a lot of “non-barn” detail.” I used the default Paint program that comes in Windows to crop the image. Also, I reversed the photo. You need a mirror image so that it looks like it’s supposed to when transferred.
Step 2: I inserted the image into a Word document. I was going to transfer the photo to a 5×7 canvas, so I adjusted the image size to 5×7. I printed the document on my ink jet printer. (I don’t know what happens with laser printers; I didn’t try it.)
I mention this to make a point. When I first started experimenting with mixed media, I wasn’t sure how best to cut the tissue paper and cardstock that I was using in my pieces. I tried several methods that seemed like they’d be “artist-y” – such as an X-acto knife and a paper cutter, when one day I hit on the process that works best. Scissors. I use scissors now.
Do not discount how hard it is sometimes to recognize the obvious.
Instructions say to burnish; I don’t have a burnisher. I pressed down and smoothed across the canvas panel to make sure the paper was securely affixed with no bubbles.
Step 6: Take a sponge and water and remove the paper.
After it dries, you may need to repeat. I have to do this a couple of times to remove all the remaining paper.
When it dries, you’re done. Unless you want to put it in a frame, and then you’re done.