Photo to Canvas Art | Redo It Yourself Inspirations : Photo to Canvas Art

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Photo to Canvas Art

Oh what fun it can be to make canvas art! 

Here is my older son and Bob Dylan playing guitars. Not at the same place; nor together.

My son is actually sitting at the campfire playing for family and Bob Dylan is on stage with thousands of fans watching his performance.

So what is with this artwork? I thought it would be cool to make an art piece of the two of them for my son's music room.

Dylan is one of his favorite inspirations. I must say, he performs and sounds just like Dylan too. Even playing the harmonica and guitar while singing. (Yup, I'm bragging. I'm a proud mom.) We really enjoy listening to him.

This is how I did the the art piece:

I chose two photos with similar lighting and easy to merge poses.

One of "E". 

And one of "B". 
(Photo chosen for one time personal use, not for sale)

I went to FotoFlexer to reverse and erase most of the background of the camping photo, then coloring in dark areas,

to get this and save it. It needed to be rough because I wanted an art piece, not a photograph.

I left the camper lights in the photo to blend into the artwork. 

Then, I went into PicMonkey and put the two photos side by side in a non spaced collage and saved it:

PicMonkey also allows you to create art overlays. After finding the look I wanted I ended up with this: 

The two photos became blended together. I saved a few sizes of it in a folder. The size needed is just short of 1 megabyte to upload for a poster. I did the resize in a 600 x 500 pixels.

To make a poster size of the image to decoupage, I went to Block Posters to create a 2'x1.5' poster out of 4 plain paper sheets printed off my inkjet to fit my canvas. The site guides you with previews to get the poster you want. You can try several times before you save a PDF of your poster size photo.

Once the PDF is created and saved, you print out your poster and trim the photo sections to be transferred or glued and decoupaged.

Oh, and make sure you have full ink cartridges, not nearly empty ones like my first attempt here. :)

Still a cool art piece. I practiced cutting and lining up edges with this failure.

Full ink cartridges work better than empty ones  :)

During my first attempt I reversed the photo to transfer the image on canvas with Mod Podge. It failed. It didn't transfer. Why? Mine was not a transfer medium. If you use a transfer medium, it will work. I need to get some!

So I printed out the non reversed version of the photo and glued the image directly onto the canvas over the mistake I made. After the glue dried, I decoupaged over the entire canvas.

I started painting on Mod Podge at the seams where the pages met on the images and used criss cross brush stokes similar to painting.

I covered the entire canvas surface with the decoupage solution. The bubbles concerned me, but I waited it out, not disturbing the image. (It was ugly) After the Mod Podge dried thoroughly, the bubbles had mostly flattened out by itself.

 I sanded the surface to get the distressed effect I wanted.

I rough sanded the edges of the image where it met the sides of the canvas for more of the effect.

I hung it temporarily in my youngest son's music room to take pictures. It's a lot smaller than my older son's room at his house. So the photos are not very good with a full set of drums in my way... the space is really limited.

I think it's going to be a nice addition to his Dylan collection. 

 (I think I'm going to play around with more pictures in PicMonkey. It's just too much fun!)


  1. Robin, this is very cool! Great job! I love that you were persistent on it and it turned out great!

  2. You did a great job. I did not know about FotoFlexer and bookmarked the site! Thanks.

  3. I just love photo's on canvas and have quite a few in my home! You did a great job with this!

  4. Rebekah Charming ImperfectionsJanuary 22, 2015 at 7:41 AM

    Looks awesome! I had no idea something like this could be done. I was just going to buy some canvas photos off shutterfly, but they were crazy expensive! Might have to try this.

  5. are amazing. I appreciate your support over at Sunday Features and I am so glad that we are working more closely together in our newly formed group. Thank you so much! Love this DIY tutorial. Shared on FB today.

  6. Using your own photos is so much fun! I hope you enjoy this as much as I did. I got some canvas from Hobby Lobby and printed out my worked up photo. And the end result is our personal wall art. Have fun! :)

  7. I saw your share earlier and can't thank you enough. Our group is amazing and you are proof of it. Thamk you from the bottom of my heart!

  8. I do too. Finally got a chance to try it and it's so much fun. I hope you can try it too!

  9. What a fantastic idea! This is such a great personalised gift and so simple to create. Brilliant. Thanks for linking up at Mum-bo Monday

  10. That is pretty awesome! I love the effect it gives...super cool.

    Thanks for linking up to Marvelous Monday on Smart Party Planning.

  11. This can get really creative with so many options. (Actual photos, art, newsprint, cloth, mixed media) Thank you for being a great hostess :)

  12. Thanks so much Catherine! Great link up! :)

  13. This turned out pretty great! Thanks for linking up with us over at Motivational Monday! I hope you'll join us again tonight for this week's linkup:

  14. Thank you, Melanie! I look forward to it! :)

  15. That's so cool! Thanks for sharing with Small Victories Sunday linkup!

  16. You did a terrific job, especially with the photo editing. Couldn't have been done better.


  17. You always bring the coolest things to our party! Thank you. Pinned and tweeted. We feel honored that you take the time to stop by our party. I hope to see you on tonight at 7 pm. We love to party with you! Happy Monday! Lou Lou Girls

  18. Thanks for stopping by Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party. This post was linked up to our Pinterest Board!

  19. I'm so honored as well! You always take the time to visit, comment and pin! You are a fabulous hostess! Thank you so much!

  20. Thank you so much for pinning and the visit! :)