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Kerry Beal

DEMO: Making Chocolate Transfer Sheets

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I got the vacuum table on Ebay--they have some similar ones now, but they are quite a bit more than I paid for mine.  I also made one once by making an airtight box with a lot of little holes drilled in the top--make sure that the top remains flat when you apply a vacuum from a vaccum cleaner.

280 mesh is not "off-the-rack". I have all my screens made to order.  It's not that expensive, there are a lot of screen companies that do that.

I just put the heat lamp bulb in a Luxo lamp knock off and aim it at the screen.

Use the flood stroke only on the first impression to initially fill the screen.  If you use it for other impressions, it will overfill the screen after 3 or 4 impressions and then you have to blot off the excess and start over.  At the end of the print stroke, use the squeegee to lift most of the ink of the front of the screen and return the ink to the rear of the screen so that you are always doing the print stroke in the same direction.  Also use the stiffest squeegee that you can find--I use a 70 durometer.

Didn't mean to suggest that the 280 mesh was 'off the rack', just that if you can use one that fine, that it means I don't have to stick with the 80 mesh. I can try a variety of coarse and fine meshes and see which suits me as long as I don't go too fine.

I got a stiffer squeegee this trip and combined with your suggestions I can't wait to see how much better my images can get. Thanks so much for your help.

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So I finally got the transfers made. It took me a little longer to organize than I thought. I had trouble getting the colours as intense as I would have liked. The black simply wasn't opaque.

gallery_34671_4917_36842.jpg

My first screen, the yellow one, in the adjustable hinges that holds the screen above the surface you are printing on.

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The back side of the finished transfers, note all the white space. The screens didn't have good markings on them to facilitate alignment. The alignment markings were so faint that they didn't print on the screens.

As the screens get a little plugged with hardened cocoa butter I have gotten in the habit of using the heat gun to soften it up then a quick wipe with a paper towel to clean the screen. Unfortunately with the black colouring the heat gun popped a hole in the screen. The black powdered colour wasn't PCB or one of the colours from the suppliers I usually use, it looked quite different from other powdered colours and I wonder if it caused excessive heating.

So does it look anything like the original - not really! Do I like it? Well, I think it's kind of interesting. I'm thinking I'll try it with a different combination of colours. I also think that a single screen could be interesting on it's own. Lot's of experiments to try.

Once I use the transfers I'll post a picture of what the other side looks like.

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I know it's not what you were looking for, but sometimes when things turn out differently, it can be just as interesting as what you wanted. I look foward to seeing what it looks like on chocolate.

Luis

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I know it's not what you were looking for, but sometimes when things turn out differently, it can be just as interesting as what you wanted. I look foward to seeing what it looks like on chocolate.

Luis

Well said. From what I can see, Kerry, it looks really interesting!

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gallery_34671_4917_910.jpg

gallery_34671_4917_18079.jpg

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So I put my transfers in the bottom of two magnetic molds, left them overnight then pried off the magnetic back, peeled off the transfer before knocking them out.

The transfer for the smaller chocolates didn't have any red put on. Things get ignored when every surface is covered with drying transfers. I need to get some sort of rack to put each piece on while they dry. I've been looking through office supply catalogues, but haven't seen anything perfect so far. I welcome your ideas.

I contacted my favorite colour specialist today to find out what I can do about getting more opaque colours. She's going to send me some samples of a couple of things to try.

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I just wanted to add my thanks Kerry - I've been following with interest and appreciate learning from your experiences.

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I took the little frog sticker that I had made a few years ago, scanned it into the computer and used photoshop to duplicate it. I spaced the images so they will fit in one of the magnetic molds I have.

The emulsion I used was the one I made using white glue from Canadian Tire and the diazo dye sample I have. The glue was not quite as viscous as the commercial emulsion and next time I think I'd do a second layer after it drys the make the screen a bit thicker. But the interesting thing is that it seems to have worked very nicely.

gallery_34671_4917_6066.jpggallery_34671_4917_5000.jpg

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I've been studying for a course for a couple of weeks so I've gotten a little behind on my silk screening stuff, but I finally got around to using the frog transfers in a magnetic mold. I'll have to try a little harder next time to get them exactly where I want as I think the frog is a little too high up the chocolate.

Most annoying but I realize that the frog is backwards. He should have his right side reaching up. I have a better copy of the original artwork now so perhaps I'll repeat this one, turned the right way around.

gallery_34671_4917_14594.jpg

I have all the colours made up for my next try at the Jackson Pollock, more intense this time. Now I just have to find the time to make them up. I spent a bit of time searching for a rack again to hold a bunch of prints as I screen them. All the scrapbooking places have these lovely racks they use to display their paper, unfortunately they don't seem to get rid of them (and looking out back beside the dumpsters so far hasn't netted me any). There do seem to be racks they sell (but not anywhere around here) for scrap-bookers to hold their paper, but shipping is rather prohibitive. The search continues.

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I know I'm a little late past the post, but I'm pretty handy with photoshop and wanted to offer my services if anyone has image editing they can't do.

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Most annoying but I realize that the frog is backwards.  He should have his right side reaching up.  I have a better copy of the original artwork now so perhaps I'll repeat this one, turned the right way around. 

gallery_34671_4917_14594.jpg

Y'know, I like seeing the underside of the frog. It's almost as if the frog's inside the chocolate, and you're seeing him cling to the top as if it were a window. (The partner to this view would be the cat sliding down from the outside of the chocolate... :biggrin: )

MelissaH

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Y'know, I like seeing the underside of the frog. It's almost as if the frog's inside the chocolate, and you're seeing him cling to the top as if it were a window. (The partner to this view would be the cat sliding down from the outside of the chocolate... :biggrin: )

MelissaH

A transfer of a cat sliding down a chocolate is a brilliant idea. Now where would I get a picture?

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Y'know, I like seeing the underside of the frog. It's almost as if the frog's inside the chocolate, and you're seeing him cling to the top as if it were a window. (The partner to this view would be the cat sliding down from the outside of the chocolate... :biggrin: )

MelissaH

A transfer of a cat sliding down a chocolate is a brilliant idea. Now where would I get a picture?

Unfortunately, we've since moved from that house, so we have neither window nor frogs anymore. I think you'd need two people: one outside the window with the cat-tempter, and the other inside with the camera set up. I'm afraid I won't be of much help.

Wouldn't this be even cuter in 3D? The frog's underside up on one end, and the sprawled-cat-from-above down below?

MelissaH

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gallery_34671_3115_8525.jpg

I've been doing a bit more silkscreening lately and made a 20 by 24 inch screen with a bunch of little stick figures on it. Tonight I printed a couple of pages of transfers and used them to decorate some mint meltaways. I'll be interested to see how well they transfer after I peel off the plastic in the am.

Unfortunately while I was cleaning the screen using the heat gun to melt the coloured cocoa butter I did manage to pop a hole in one of the zebras. Most annoying.

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Hi Kerry,

I was just wondering the other day, what happened to your silkscreening adventures.

Luis

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Hi Kerry,

I was just wondering the other day, what happened to your silkscreening adventures.

Luis

I recently got involved in making up some screens for a pastry chef at Niagara College - he will be competing in competitions using 'dead dough' where he uses unleavened bread dough to make figures. Really something. The screens were a beautiful mill wheel and a baker putting a loaf of bread into a wood oven with a peel.

I've asked for pictures when he's used the screens.

Here is an eG link to decorative bread using dead dough.

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Dawn Dishwashing soap and hot water does a great job of cleaning screens. It's very easy to put a hole in a screen using a heat gun.

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Hi Kerry,

I was just wondering the other day, what happened to your silkscreening adventures.

Luis

I recently got involved in making up some screens for a pastry chef at Niagara College - he will be competing in competitions using 'dead dough' where he uses unleavened bread dough to make figures. Really something. The screens were a beautiful mill wheel and a baker putting a loaf of bread into a wood oven with a peel.

I've asked for pictures when he's used the screens.

Here is an eG link to decorative bread using dead dough.

thanks for the update. sounds interesting

Luis

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I'm up in Manitoulin Island again and Beth (from the Manitoulin Chocolate Works) and I were playing this evening making some transfers. As you will recall from the beginning of this thread - it was Beth and I that started playing with this last year at about this time. We've learned a lot since then thanks to the help of eG'ers and some screen printing folk.

We practiced getting the texture of the cocoa butter and colour right then Beth said - "what would happen if we just dragged some colour across the screen?" - so we decided to find out.

I have one screen that I use to put a white layer behind the Jackson Pollock transfer and we hauled that out.

gallery_34671_3115_6066.jpg

We started by putting some globs of colour along the top.

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Then we dragged the squeegie through the colour and across the screen.

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This was the first image we got.

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Over time the colours became more mixed and we added some smaller blobs of new colour.

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One of the later prints.

Eventually of course we ended up with brown and that's where we called it quits.

So you see you can get some nice effects at minimum cost.

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Cool - now playing artist...when you got to that pastel screen you can't add another layer because it would be covered by the pastel in the final print, but if you reversed the order and let's say hand painted swirls or polka dots, dried, then did the pastel spread. Or, have you tried doing a screen, and while wet, carving away at it to reveal blank transfer, then doing another screen?

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Cool - now playing artist...when you got to that pastel screen you can't add another layer because it would be covered by the pastel in the final print, but if you reversed the order and let's say hand painted swirls or polka dots, dried, then did the pastel spread.  Or, have you tried doing a screen, and while wet, carving away at it to reveal blank transfer, then doing another screen?

We were bouncing around some ideas like that last night. If you had a polka dotted or swirled pattern screen - then did this effect over it...

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keep up the good work kerry, and soon enough, you'll be selling transfer sheets to everyone on the board. lol

Luis

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Playing with transfer sheets again after a few years - I picked up one of those YUDU units at Michael's before they stopped selling them. It's been sitting in the box probably for 8 years. I really only wanted it for the lights because the guy who exposed my screens for me died and his son told me he didn't want to take over the business. Found out a couple of days ago that the son and wife actually did take over the business - so all this time...

 

I used one of the crappy YUDU coarse mesh screens to make this transfer - printed it out this afternoon and then realized it was BACKWARDS! DUH!!!!

 

IMG_4226.jpg

 

 

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