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Old 01-24-2013, 05:15 PM
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Grid Method for Transferring Image

I'm really liking this method for getting a drawing on my painting surface...it works well for everything from cold press to illustration board. I do the grid on tracing paper and make final adjustments. It really helps me simplify (versus tracing where you are tempted to incorporate too many lines). It also looks more natural because it's a little more uneven than a photograph.

After it's on the tracing paper in the correct size, I use my homemade graphite paper for the final transfer. It is really a good preliminary study, too, because you begin to focus on shapes and not symbols (especially in a portrait).

This is an excellent video that shows the process. You can set up the grid on your scanned or digital reference photo in Photoshop and print it out rather than marking up a good photograph.

Grid Drawing by Larry Kitchen

You also have the tracing paper to lay over the painting if you lose your way!

Jan
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:46 PM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

One of the other youtube videos showed using string taped at the sides, top and bottom in place of pencil lines. I should try that. After drawing, the tape and string are removed leaving no lines.
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Old 01-24-2013, 08:32 PM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

Jan, I use the grid method for either enlarging or reducing a photo or sketch prior to my transfer to watercolor paper. This saves a tremendous amount of time. For my transfer I use a home made carbon transfer paper and my handy ball stylus to rub the lines for transfer. I also use the graphite rub method to make my transfer carbon. I've recoated the same sheet 4 or 5 times now, it lasts a long time. Here's my reduction for Doug's Amish Pair. Hope you can make this out.



Mike

Last edited by Mike3839 : 01-24-2013 at 08:35 PM.
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Old 01-24-2013, 09:23 PM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

Thanks, Mike! That's exactly how I transfer my drawings. I have recharged my graphite paper (6B woodless pencil) several times and it still works great. I really like using a stylus, too. The ball tip doesn't dig into the paper and I can lift out the lines very easily if I want to make changes or lighten them.

John Salminen uses a grid for his complex city paintings. He draws the lines directly onto the watercolor paper and lifts them out if they aren't absorbed into the composition when he starts painting a section.

I used a grid directly on some illustration board for a gouache painting, but for watercolor I would rather put it on the tracing paper instead and not have the lines to erase.

Jan
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Old 01-25-2013, 05:57 AM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

This is a really useful link Jan thanks...just to 'see' it rather than read about it when trying to do it is really helpful!I'd originally traced but have moved to just using key 'dots' for external parameters of eg corners of eyes, end of nose etc to try and improve my drawing skills which are still sadly lacking...this looks like a nice in-between that improves your drawing skills and observation while you're doing it, plus being able to manipulate between sizes without pulling a muscle in your brain!
Thanks for posting
Suzanne
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Old 01-26-2013, 01:26 AM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

Something somebody might find useful is this: Get a clear "sheet protector" that you can slip your 8x11 photo in. Then you can draw your grids on top of the clear sheet protector and using the same # of grid boxes on your WC paper, you can almost freehand transfer your photograph simply by drawing what is in each box of the grid onto each box grid on the WC paper.
I've got several clear sheet protectors that have different #s of grids on them and then I can try out which grid I like by just slipping my reference photo into and out of it.
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Old 01-26-2013, 06:24 AM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

Great idea, Molly! I had some acetate sheets, but a sheet protector is even better.

Jan
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:14 PM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

Having different size grids on separate sheet protectors would be great so the painting you want to work on could be quarter sheet, half sheets or different sizes. All you would have to do is calculate the correct ratio for each size.
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:26 PM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

Molly: This is a tried and true historic method of transfer and works every time. Can't beat the graph method.
For those old-timers who are lazy like me: I ordered an overhead projector from a school equipment site. (really good deal).
I put my transparency (acetate paper) over my sketch or photo, and with a very fine rapidograph pen, I trace the image with just the few lines I need and then project onto the paper attached to the easel or wall, just about any size I want in pencil.
Then, the real work begins
Thanks for sharing Molly.
derek
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:24 PM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

Hey DEREK, Can you tell us more about this school equip. site? It would be nice to find one of those projectors at a discount of some sort. They aren't cheap!

RON, Those cellophane or clear material "bags" that you'd slip your art work into (like if you were going to sell something with a matt around it and wanted to keep it nice...) come in a ton of big sizes. I bought some to accomodate my 18x24 sprayed or unsprayed drawings in to keep the mess of the charcoal down and from being smeared. I'll bet you could get a few, (they're less than $2-3 for the 18x24 at least) in the sizes of your favorite sized watercolor color paper, put your grid on the outside and carry on from there in some fashion.

Thanks, Nicole
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:25 PM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

Thanks for sharing this video, Jan. The graph method works very nicely. The sheet protector's are a GREAT idea, Molly.
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Old 01-29-2013, 10:59 PM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

Hi Molly:
Here is just on of the tons of ads for new and used projectors. I got mine used for around $125.....worth every penny.
http://electronics.pricegrabber.com/...e/results.html
Happy Painting.
Derek
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Old 01-29-2013, 11:35 PM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

I couldn't live without my gridded reference photo when recreating the image as a drawing on watercolor paper! I draw a diagonal grid (corner to corner in an X, then vertical and horizontal lines across centers, then subdivide the sections to the level of granularity desired) on a copy of the reference photo. I like the diagonal method because it requires no measuring and no math to proportionally scale the grid on the watercolor paper. Once the grid is on the watercolor paper, I draw the image in pencil by referring to the gridded reference photo. After a few dozen images done this way, the hand-eye coordination gets pretty accurate!

I tried using graphite coated transfer sheets once or twice in the past but didn't care for that method...it seemed like an extra step if I'm using a grid anyway and was a bit messy and tedious. Also tried a projector but didn't care for that method either.
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Last edited by Brindle : 01-29-2013 at 11:39 PM.
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Old 02-01-2013, 09:06 PM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

Hello,

I don't grid directly from photos, and I don't own a projector, but I sometimes decide that I want my finish work a different size than the final sketch (usually larger); so the sketch is what I grid. I do this by taping the finish grid to a sunny window, the finish paper over that, and then doing the transfer that way (the smaller gridded final sketch taped on the window, also). But, it doesn't always work, as some of the finish papers (or boards) are too thick to see through. In that case, I have to use homemade transfer paper. The above method puts no grid lines on the finish paper. I hope I explained this well
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Old 02-06-2013, 11:33 PM
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Re: Grid Method for Transferring Image

I haven't gridded for watercolor, but when I'm doing graphite work and I think I might need it, I draw the grid directly on the original and the final. I use the finest, lightest lines I can... and I erase the grids as I work on the final image.
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