INTRODUCTION Transfers offer two methods of application: a shape transfer that matches the paper cutout, and drawn transfer that is created by drawing with a dull tool on the back of a transfer to create dots or lines.
Transfers allow you to create designs that have an entirely different look than brushed on coloured slip. Shapes can have homogenous colour or mottled colour, and the edges of shapes have crisp edges.
TIP: The Best Papers for Transfers Newspaper is the best paper for transfers. Manila paper also works well. Printer paper, if not heavy stock will tear apart.
ESSENTIAL: Preparing a Shape Transfer Apply 2 coats of slip to a shape transfer so that you can no longer read the print on the newspaper. (It doesn't have to dry between coats.) If the slip is applied too thinly, when transferred there will be gaps in the colour. If the slip is applied too thickly, when transferred the edges may smudge.
ESSENTIAL: Preparing a Drawn Transfer Apply 1 thin even coat of slip to a shape transfer so you can still faintly see read the print on the newspaper. If the slip is applied too thickly, when drawing on the back of the transfer, lines and dots will be bigger than the drawing marks.
TIP: Transfers are Ready When... A transfer is ready when the coloured slip has a dull sheen, is no longer shiny and you can touch it with your finger and the slip doesn't come off the paper.
TIP: When to Apply Coloured Slip Decoration Coloured slip can be applied to the clay until it is leatherhard. Once it is past that point, slip will flake off and transfers will not adhere. When applying transfers onto clay that already has slip applied to it, wait till the slip is no longer glossy and has a dull sheen.
TIP: The Transfers are Ready BEFORE You Are! Once the transfers are ready, you can gently lay a plastic bag over them until you are ready to use them (Ideally, in less than an hour). The plastic does not have to be tucked under the bat.
TIP: The Transfers are Dry! A transfer is too dry once the coloured slip no longer has a sheen. The paper may curl up from the bat. To restore the transfers, lightly mist with water, wait for any water droplets to evaporate before applying them.
ESSENTIAL: Drawn Transfers Must be Burnished Any lines or dots that were applied by drawing on the back of a transfer, must be burnished onto the plate. Place a scrap of newspaper over the area and burnish with the silicone rib. This will make sure the slip is fully bonded to the surface.
TIP: Fixing Mistakes The easiest way to fix a mistake is to hide it under a new transfer. Small mistakes can also be removed by carving once the plate is leatherhard (or nearly there). This may occur while the plate is still in the slump mold, or after removing it. Do not try to wipe away mistakes with a sponge. It will leave a smudge of colour that you might not see until after the glaze firing. Watch the Fixing Mistakes Video on the Stencil Video Page for details.
NOTE: It may take some time for the video to appear
Transfers are a little finicky, but the results are worth the effort.