Q: What type of Mod Podge do you use? Can you use spray acrylic to seal the picture?
A: I use MATTE Mod Podge. I haven’t tried it with glossy, but some readers have. I think it comes down to personal preference. Some suggest making your own mod podge formula by mixing white glue and water – I’m not gutsy enough to try it, plus I used a coupon and bought a lifetime supply of Mod Podge. As far as sealing the Mod Podge or sealing the picture for humid climates, I’m not sure. I’m really curious to hear if anyone has tried this and what the results were?
Q: My photo bubbles up/the ink on my photo smears/what kind of paper do you print your photos on?
A: DO NOT USE photographs printed from your home computer. For the best results, get your pictures printed up at a photo processing center. I like Costco. I always get my photos printed in a MATTE finish. Also, when you glue the photo on the canvas, be sure to lay it face down on a clean work surface and smooth out the photo from the back of the canvas in addition to smoothing it down well from the top side.
Q: The paper around the edges bubbles up while it’s drying/doesn’t lay flat.
A: First of all, use a heavy cardstock/scrapbook paper. My favorite brands are Basic Grey, American Crafts, and My Mind’s Eye. A good quality paper will make all the difference in your mod podge projects. It smoothes out nicer, doesn’t crumble or bleed or deteriorate while you’re smoothing it down on the sides of the canvas. Also, cut your paper pieces just a hair smaller than the surface; it’s much more difficult to get the paper to smooth out if you have to press it around a curve. Use a better quality canvas. I really like the canvases from Joann’s. The brand that is sold at Michael’s seems to be a lot bumpier where it’s folded at the corners; I did not like the results of my canvas photos when I used the bumpy canvases. Finally, let the paper dry and most of the bubbles/bumps will likely smooth out. I walk past my drying projects every now and then and just press out any bubbles/bumps.
Q: Have you done a larger photo and how did it turn out?
A: I have only put up to an 11×14 photo on a canvas – it turned out awesome. I did a bit of a larger photo (12×18) on a slab of MDF and it was more difficult to work the bubbles out – though it did dry without any bubbling under the picture. I sort of rolled the picture out onto the base, smoothing out the bubbles little by little.
Q: I can see lines in my finished canvas. Is this right?
A: I use a wide foam brush to reduce the number of overlapping brush strokes as much as possible, BUT the finished product will have visible lines. I LOVE this effect – it gives the canvas some texture and character.
Q: Can you use this technique on wood or other bases?
A: Why not!! I used some scrap 1/2″ MDF, sealed it with Mod Podge, and did all the steps exactly the same, and it turned out perfect! Actually, the paper smoothed out around the edges even EASIER. I did NOT sand the edges at all before gluing everything down. Makes the project even cheaper if you have scrap wood/wood-like product in your garage!!
So let’s look at some more examples.