How To Transfer Artwork: Graphics (Episode 1)

In this video I’ll show you guys a
relatively easy and very accurate way to transfer a graphic design from one side
of a vehicle to another. Wicked Art Airbrush Studio How To Transfer Graphics When it comes to laying out a design, whether I’m doing
a graphic or even a traditional flame job, I’m still very old-school in that I
prefer to grab a roll of tape and just go to work by hand. It takes a little bit
of time and you will waste some tape during the process, but in the end I
think you get a better result because your design is more tailored to whatever
vehicle you’re working on. So I know this is just a test panel but imagine for a
minute that this is the side of a vehicle. And we’ve laid this design out
and now we need to replicate it on the other side of the vehicle. So how do we
go about doing that. So what I’m about to show you guys is also a very old-school
method for doing this. It’s been around for years and years and years. And in my
opinion it’s still one of the easiest and most effective ways of transferring
an image from one side of a vehicle to another. It doesn’t require any expensive
tools or materials. In fact, it starts with masking paper. You can buy masking
paper for relatively cheap in large rolls and varied widths. So you could cover
the entire side of a vehicle if you needed to. So to begin with, I’m gonna
cover this panel with a piece of masking paper. Just loosely. Now at this point if we were
actually working on a vehicle we would want to find registration marks so that
we can line it up on the other side the same as its lined up on the side that
you’re working on. To do that you can use a panel gap, or the wheel arch lip,
whatever you can find. But because this is a panel we can just use the edge
of the panel itself. So next I’m going to take a crayon, and just like in grade
school, you take the crayon and then you… go over the design… along with the edges
for our registration And just like that, we now have a copy of the masked off graphic. From here, we’ll take this down… and we’ll go to the bench.
Now that we’re on the bench you can see I’m just using a cutting board
underneath this tracing. You can use a piece of cardboard or anything else
that’s got a little bit of give to it. And from here I’m going to use a pounce
wheel. The pounce wheel has a little spur on the end of it
with spikes so that you can trace over your design and put a dotted line right
across that… where you’ve taken it. You want to be careful and not press too
hard because if you go too deep you’ll just cut the paper all together. You
won’t have the dotted lines. It would be completely cut. So… but I try to trace
down the center of each tape line. And that gives me a pretty good idea for
when I go to re-tape this design for where I need to be. I prefer the 14 TPI, which is teeth per
inch, pounce wheel. I’ll leave a link in the description where you can get these.
Because the 14 teeth doesn’t tend to cut the paper like the finer ones do. But
I’ll go through and trace each one of these lines that need to be masked again
on the other side of the vehicle. And then we’ll have a good road map for the
next part of the process. And you want to make sure you get all of
them. To check you can run your finger over
and you’ll be able to feel whether that line has been scored with dots or not. For
instance, that one right there I missed. So we have our new pattern and I flipped
this panel over so that we can simulate the other side of the vehicle. So to put
the pattern up, we don’t want to put it in the same orientation as we had on the
other side of the vehicle. If we were actually doing this on the opposite side
of a vehicle you would want to flip this over. And then we line up using the
registration marks. This paper is thin enough that I can see through it. And then I’ll tape it in place. The next part
of the process involves a pounce bag. This is just a canvas bag filled with
blue chalk. I’ve looked, and apparently they don’t make these anymore. I’ve had
this one for, man I don’t know how many years. You can buy a pounce pad which is,
it looks like a plastic or a wooden box that has a bag attached underneath it
that holds the chalk in there. I don’t know how well those work. I’ve never
tried one. But this is not rocket science. You can make one of these out of an old
sock. I’ll leave a link in the description below to the blue chalk that
I use, or if you’re working on a dark background,
baby powder works great. But just cut the sock to whatever length that
you want, pour your chalk in, wrap the end with tape so you kind of have a little
bit of a handle and all we’re going to do is pounce through all of the
perforated dots we have on our pattern. Sometimes it helps to rub over it just
to make sure you’re pushing the chalk through the perforated lines. Then lift it,
just to make sure you haven’t missed anything. We haven’t. So I’ll put that down and we can remove our pattern. And now we’ve got a great pattern to work from to mask off the
design on the other side of the vehicle. All right, I’ve washed the chalk off my
hands. So now I can start masking this off. Now remember I tried to keep the
perforated lines in the center of the quarter inch tape before. So when I tape
this off I want to try to keep those lines in the center of the tape. Music playing So once you have the basic graphic
masked off then you can mask over the top of that for individual colors and
it’s ready to spray. There are so many different methods for transferring your
art, whether you’re talking about graphics or artwork in general, onto
your canvas or substrate, whatever you’re working on. Rather than trying to cover
every single method in one video, which would take a while, I decided to start a
new series. So this will be the first video in a series on just how to
transfer your artwork on to whatever you’re working on. If you guys are
interested more in the automotive side of things, I highly recommend Craig
Fraser’s book “Automotive Cheap Tricks & Special F/X II”. Craig Fraser has
been in the industry for a very long time. He’s one of those guys that I’ve
looked up to throughout my entire career. I’ve learned a lot from his books, his
videos and his articles in Airbrush Action Magazine over the years. I’ll
leave a link in the description below to his book. Check it out if you’re
interested. Thanks again for watching! Remember to
like, subscribe and share if you got something out of this and I’ll see you
guys next time.


  • Simon Carter

    Great job Wicked. I’m really enjoying the videos Buddy, the subjects your choosing are great, and I always love real world information. Thanks for posting.

  • Nick Wheeler

    very informative, thanks for sharing. I would be interested in seeing your take on ghost flame aka hot rod style. I'm trying to perfect my technique.

  • Guy Verney

    Hi Trevor.
    Old ways are always the best done it myself.
    It is also a good way to transfer artwork guidelines. I just printed a picture and ran the pounce wheel round particular features and then airbrushed along the holes. Leaves you a great map to start from.

  • Richard Gray

    Thanks Trevor for taking the time in making these videos tips advice are deeply helpful THANK YOU

  • Charles Locklear

    Question what do I need to rebuild my iwata eclipse bottom feed, and can the original size be changed, thx for all your help….. what size do you recommend I'm into painting model planes….thx again

  • Charles Locklear

    Great video, thx…

  • In the garage hey bro, good video. If you wouldn't mind can you cratique this video and help me out with my white. Also I'm not having much luck using the balancing clear with the candy2o like at all. I appreciate it.

  • sped17373

    Strangely enough, in my almost 40 years of airbrushing I've never had to use a pounce wheel.


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