How to Decoupage a Photograph on Canvas
Photographs mounted on canvas make striking wall decor in your home. But, artist originals sold at galleries, or even knock-offs sold at home decorating stores, can run pricey, especially if you're decorating your home on a budget. To keep your budget within its limits, gather photographs of your children or family history photos. Even as a beginner, you can make a professional-looking canvas with a few supplies and a little patience.
Things You'll Need
- Stretched canvas
- Craft knife
- Acrylic paint
- Sponge brushes
- Decoupage medium
- Antiquing glaze
- Soft cloth
Photocopy a photograph you plan to decoupage; enlarge it to the same size as the canvas. If you have digital pictures on your computer, print your own. Most picture making software allows you to size the picture and print in color, sepia tone or black and white. Use regular copy paper as photo paper tends to be too thick and shiny to decoupage effectively. You can have photographs enlarged at your local office supply store.
Trim the photocopy 1/2 inch smaller on all sides than the canvas using a straight edge, such as a metal ruler, and a craft knife. Avoid using scissors as they don't produce a crisp finished edge.
Use a sponge brush to cover the canvas with a coat of acrylic paint. Pick a complementary color to the picture. For example, dark brown really highlights a sepia-toned photograph. Paint to the edges of the canvas; this gives the photograph the appearance of being matted. Allow the paint to completely dry.
Coat the back of the photograph with decoupage medium with a sponge brush. You need several sponge brushes because the medium hardens quickly, and you have to discard used brushes when this happens.
Center the photo image onto the front of the painted canvas. Smooth out wrinkles and ensure it adheres properly. Cover the entire canvas with another coat of medium out to the edges. Leave the image to dry completely. Follow up with three or four more coats of decoupage medium, letting the canvas dry completely after each coat.
Wait 24 hours after the final coat to add the metallic antiquing glaze. Apply the glaze with a soft cloth and light touch. Make it darker around the perimeter of the canvas for a framed effect. Rub off any excess and let dry. Buff to a light sheen with a soft cloth.
Affix hanging hardware to the back of the canvas or place it on a decorative stand for display.
- The Complete Photo Guide to Paper Crafts; Trice Boerens