Tutorial: Transfer Color Image to Wood

Tutorial Transfer Color Image to Wood image

Materials Needed

Material Needed for Transfer Color Image to Wood Tutorial by DEEJ DOES image

Gel Medium




Sponge and water


Popsicle Stick (or credit card)


Color laser copy (image inverted)

In addition to the materials above, you may also need couple drops of olive oil.

Tools To Use

  • Glue brush
  • Paint and paint brush, if you decide to paint edges of wood.
  • Imagination

How-to Instructions

  • Step 1

    Trim color laser copy to size of the wood piece.

  • Step 2

    Apply a generous amount of the gel medium to the wood.  You dont need a a very thick layer, just an even, consistent layer thick enough so color of wood doesn’t show through.

  • Step 3

    Carefully place your inverted image, photo side down, onto the wood panel.  Using your popsicle stick or edge of credit card to burnish, firmly rub to smooth out the image and remove air pockets.  Let it dry completely for 24 hours.

  • Step 4

    Use a slighty damp sponge to wet one section of the paper at a time by dabbing lightly.  Begin rubbing (with sponge) to gently remove the paper and expose the transferred image below.  It’s not a bad idea to remove the topmost layer first, let it dry some, and then repeat the process as needed to remove the white paper hairs that were left behind. Another trick to get rid of the fuzzies is to dab a fingertip of olive oil and gently massage any stray hairs to make them disappear.

  • Step 5

    Once you are satisfied with the image, seal the photo to wood transfer with a finishing spray or layers of modge podge.

  • Tutorial Tips

    I find images with more saturated colors tend to turn transfer and turn out best. So depending on the image you use you sometimes can get unexpected yet welcome results. The one I did above for my niece’s keepsake wedding box had a old-time Victorian look which greatly complemented the end result!