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Chalk Lettering

Lesson 3 of 5

Three Methods of Image Transfer


Chalk Lettering

Lesson 3 of 5

Three Methods of Image Transfer


Lesson Info

Three Methods of Image Transfer

So now that we have our image and we're ready to go, I'm going to talk to you guys a little bit about how it is that we want to transfer that image from the computer or from the piece paper onto what we're going to be working on there's three different methods that I'm going to cover today use whichever one is easiest for you on did you can also try and find your um the first way that I'm going to go over to chance for the images using something called transfer paper the stuff is super easy it comes in a whole bunch of different colors so if you're working on a different colored surface if you have a use green chalkboard paint you don't want to have either black or white they have yellow they have blue um I tend to use when I'm working on a chalkboard surface I tend to use the charcoal based one because you khun barely see it you can also use white if you want to have something a guide that's a lot more visible and easy to follow I prefer it to be a little bit more subtle so I'm going ...

to use the charcoal based one so it comes in a roll and you just cut off a little piece and you're just gonna tape that there's two sides to the transfer paper there's a side that has the charcoal on it and there's this side that does not so you want to tape it, do a little quick test and tape it charcoal side down on top of your service you really only need a piece that's as big as your image area itself I could have used a a lot smaller piece um thie great thing about transfer paper is that you can use it over and over again it last you many, many uses so don't throw it away when you're done with this first image transfer, you can keep using that same piece for quite a long time, so then I've taken my image and I printed it out to be the size that I wanted to be to work on this board. If I'm working on something larger, either I can get something printed at kinko's or staples or any place where you can get stuff printed on larger paper or you can just tile it yourself by printing out different sections of the image and taping them together doesn't have to be pretty it just has to all all the information just needs to be there you can do the same thing with the transfer paper itself. I recently did a piece that was four feet by seven feet and I took an entire one of these things and I unrolled everything, cut it up into pieces and made one giant giant piece of transfer paper for myself s o don't worry you can scale it up or you can scale it down however you are most comfortable so then I'm going to tape down my image on here and now you're just going to go over the image itself with anything with a hard hard tip you can use a ball point pen you can use a pencil whatever you have available is going to be fine you want to press down fairly hard in order to get it to transfer a nice clean solid line I recommend doing a little test first if you want to see what does it look like when you press light you know if you press too hard though you break the lead in your pencil what does it look like if you press harder do you need to go really hard and so then you can feel it back and take a little look and see okay, you know I'm actually going to be okay with this latest line I don't need to go super dark but it's nice to test that before you trace your whole image because otherwise that's a lot of work and if you get done and you peel it back in your images and they're gonna start all over so I'm just going to trace the word create here and I'm not going to worry about being too exact because this is a piece of ham lettering if I were doing someone's logo I might be a bit more concerned I might want to take out some rulers to get straight edges and stuff like that but ah for this piece I wanted to feel like it was done by hand. Um so I'm ok without them transfer paper is a wonderful choice. Uh if you have an image that you need to replicate exactly or if you have something that's super detailed um it's also a really great way to start in this process before your super comfortable working in shock. It's nice. If the first thing that you d'oh you feel that you have a little bit more of a solid guide to work from as you get more comfortable on the chop you might do left and left of the transfer and you might do more and more just drawing things by hand. So one thing done chasing over this word before I take off everything completely I'm gonna want to peel it back too see if there's anything that I miss I'm only gonna take off two five and take a quick look it looks like it looks like I missed part of the ease their okay, so this back do the cross bars on my ear trump stayed there so that covers the first method using transfer paper in order to get your image onto your chalkboard surface the next method that I'm gonna d'oh eyes going to be using a projector they're all sorts of different projectors you can get I got a simple many pocket projector there's a bunch of different bunch of different options but the pocket projector is not that expensive you can't go see super huge with the image but you can certainly go big enough it's really small it's really easy it's it's a great tool tohave okay, so I brought up my image on the projector and I'm going to get that pretty much in place it's not super exact these air different methods obviously I suggest you use one method per mural instead of multiple ones I'm just trying to show you all of these together. Um so at this stage you can either block it out using chalk using chalk pencils are just using a regular pencil I'm going to continue using pencils since that's what I started with above and I'm just gonna lightly trace this I don't tend to worry about my pencil lions going into this space that I'm going to be filling on lee out of its with you notice a lot of my lines come in further into the letter and the pencil really won't show up at all ah in your final piece is um say keep your lines is as light as you can while still being able to see them well enough that you can do the illustration on top but but the pencil really blend right into that to the chalk background and in terms of getting your chock surface to begin with, you can use chalkboard paint that you pain on with a brush or with a roller you might get a smoother surface if you use a roller um or to get a really smooth surface you can always use a spray paint there's a there's no cry aloud makes up black chalkboard spray paint that I used to do these small boards here um if you doing something like a while you're gonna want to roll it out and you're going to want to do a bunch of coats to for sure um at least two coats if you're doing this spray pain probably more like three or four you want the surface to be pretty smooth but it's nice if it has a little bit of tooth to it a little bit of roughness two it um really gives the chalk somethingto grab on to ok, so now we've got our first two words one done with transfer paper one done with the projector and then for the last one I'm just going to do it free hand so I'm going to bring out my sketch again so that I have this to look at, um and something that you might noticed about this versus what was on my computers that this has a grid on it whenever I'm sketching something free hand, I like to work with a grid and often transfer the grid on teo the surface that I'm working on. So if it's a super large mural, it might be one foot by one foot squares, but whatever it is, it helps control the spacing ahs you're working, so if you already figured out how much space each one of these takes that makes a big difference I think because this is so small I won't be doing a grid on here, but when I move on to do the mural on the wall with you guys, you will see me do the entire grid on the wall, so whenever I'm doing stuff free hand, the first thing I always do is dry and my baseline and my head my my cap height and then I'm gonna block out roughly where you to the letters goes nice whenever you can to sort of think about and look at the images a whole make sure your spacing is going well. So when I first started sketching, I am working super light still trying to figure out if I've got the letters in the right place and once I have everything blocked and I'm going to go back over it so I can see it a little bit better but this first passes just super light and making sure there's enough space for all the letters okay, so the spacing is feeling pretty good thinking about where the three d is going to come in, mr to go over it a little bit darker, and you can try using a different different kinds of different softness is of lead in order to get, um, a darker line versus a lighter line so you can play around with swapping out different lead in your pencils. I tend to always use mechanical pencils because I can't be bothered to stop and sharpen them really loves sketching with mechanical pencils more than anything, the only when I'm feeling super confident and I go into my last round with our work that I usually switch over to markers, so I realized that the pencil it could be a little difficult see, particularly on camera, so I'm going to do this last past of the word day with the charcoal white pencils that I have rather than the regular pencils just so it shows up a little bit mark, barely, but again, even with this, I'm gonna keep its super light because I'm really just blocking this then so now I've got my image ready, and I'm gonna move on to talk to you guys a little bit about materials that you can use.

Class Description

A typographic mural uses words to produce a stunning and highly communicative piece of art. In Chalk Lettering, Annica Lydenberg will take you through the process of completing a large scale installation as she makes a chalk mural on-site at CreativeLive's San Francisco headquarters.

Besides being artistically gratifying, chalk lettering is an in-demand service that can bolster your client work. In Chalk Lettering you’ll learn the many ways to turn a small sketch or something you designed on the computer into a piece on a wall. Annica will discuss methods you can use to create temporary or long-lasting chalk murals and demonstrate freehand sketching and grid mapping. 

You’ll learn:

  • How to prepare your surface
  • Multiple options for transferring an image to a wall
  • Techniques for stylizing letter forms
  • The pros and cons of chalk, conte crayons and paint markers

Annica will help you develop a system for choosing type styles that work well together while enhancing the message of of your mural. She’ll also discuss the benefits of chalk and how practicing facilitates fine-tuning and makes murals less daunting.

Bending words into art, typographic murals are visual powerhouses. Watch one come to life and learn the techniques and process that go into making one in Chalk Lettering.


  1. Introduction - How to Develop Image
  2. Creating a Sketch and Adjusting in PS

    Annica shares her “getting started” process and how she transfers her sketches into Adobe Photoshop.

  3. Three Methods of Image Transfer
  4. Your Tools: Chalk, Markers and Beyond
  5. Chalk Lettering Mural in Action


Manish Gupta

Annica obviously has great talent, her method needs patience, truck loads of it. Of course, if you don't have patience, you should not purchase this course. This is a great course for someone starting off in chalk lettering. I would personally love to have a segment on the actual techniques used in photoshop to fine tune the chalk lettering done on paper/pencil. I especially loved the technique of doing it with paper pencil and just inverting it in photoshop. Overall, a great class. However, I felt, portions of the video could have been time lapsed ( like the wall mural segment) to save the students some time. Looking forward to seeing more from her.

Letter Shoppe

What a great class! This was the best online education I was able to find on Chalk Lettering by far. Annica's approach is fresh and she does a wonderful job of showcasing her process in a easy and fun way. Highly recommended!