Friday, July 9, 2010

Try This Technique--Heat Emboss Your Photos!

I'd like to share with you a technique that I recently discovered and thought was unique--but considering the rage in mixed media and how scrapbooking has changed over the years, perhaps this technique isn't that new.  But, it is new to me and maybe some of you will agree.  I should say that I found this technique through an old article that I had saved.  I'm not sure where it came from, to be honest.  I hope you try this.  Let me know what you think and/or if you have any problems.  I'll tell you up front that you will need to use a photo that has a light colored background.  The lighter the background, the easier it will be to see the paper beneath.  I originally used a photo that I thought would work, but as I embossed, I discovered that it got too dark.  Have Fun!

Materials Needed:
*  Photo with a light background
Designer Paper cut to the size of your copied photo
UTEE (Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel)
*  Glue Stick (it has to be a glue stick as any other type of adhesive will not work)
Versamark ink
*  Heat Gun
1.  Copy your photo onto ordinary copy paper (the kind you use with your computer printer).  Cut the copied photo from the paper.

2.  Cut a piece of Designer Paper to the exact size of your copied photo.

3.  Apply glue using the Glue Stick to the back of the copied photo--cover the entire back

4.  Attach the copied photo to the top of the Designer Paper.  The pattern of the designer paper should be facing up.  Trim excess paper from around the photo.

5.  Apply Versamark Ink to the entire surface of the photo.  Check to make sure you don't have any 'dry' spots.  You might have to tilt it to see where you might've missed.

6.  Immediately cover the surface with UTEE and shake off the excess onto a paper towel or scrap of paper.  Set the paper/paper towel to the side or pour it back in the bottle.

7.  Next, place the photo in a pan (I used an old baking pan).  This helps keep the photo in place so the photo doesn't 'fly' around while heating.

8.  Apply heat to the photo using a heat gun specifically made for embossing.  DO NOT use a hairdryer!  If you're unsure of how to heat emboss, please read the manufacturer's instructions.  Just hold the heat gun a few inches from the surface and move it around your surface as the UTEE melts.

9.  Repeat steps 6-8 two to four times.  You should start to see the image of the designer paper showing through the photo.  In my photo, the vintage writing can be seen through the white of the jacket and of the bridal gown.  NOTE:  I had to do this project over using a different photo:

10. Can you see it? These are my parents when they were married in 1955. Today (the 9th) is their 55th anniversary! Note: Your paper may curl as your add the layers of UTEE. If you want to create a distressed look, just curl the upturned edges and the UTEE will crack. (after 4 layers) If you only use 2 layers, you can set your photo beneath some heavy books to flatten it, but it shouldn't crack.

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial.  Share any comments you might have! 


Tiffany said...

omg That is super cool!! gorgeous photo too!! :)

A Cards Delight said...

Oh wow, how interesting! You could even make that into a card for their anniversary! Thank you for the tutorial. My parents celebrated 66 years on Monday! Hugz to ya!

Lynda said...

Super cool! Thanks for sharing, I will definitely give it a try :) And congrats to your parents!!

Pryn said...

Very cool technique! Great step by step photos and instructions! They are very easy to follow and understand. Thank you for sharing :)

Lisa West said...

Yes,I have tried this great technique with beach pictures. I love the effect. Great tip about the glue. I must not have put on enough as they are curling a peeling quite a bit. I never posted it as I have a shadowbox adventure to go on with them. Stay tuned. Lisa