Digital Art: How to Print Your Own Tissue Paper

It's probably safe to say that the digital scanner vastly increased the possibilities for using and reusing your artwork. Scanning a two-dimensional piece so you can print it out over and over again as digital artand even manipulate it in the computer firstallows you to use it in other ways to make all of your artwork your own.

Digitally art tissue paper by Nikki Smith.

Nikki Smith has been writing a series of digital art tutorials in Cloth Paper Scissors magazine. In the November/December 2012 issue, she explains how to use digital artwork to print your own tissue papers.

"Consider scans of your artwork, digital art, photos, or public domain images from sites like for printing images onto tissue. The effect is amazing yet it is simple to do. And it opens a world of possibilities for using your own imagery as transparent layers for collage, decoupage, resin jewelry, and more," writes Nikki in the Getting Technical column.

Here are the basic directions, adapted from her article.

Supplies needed:

  • Tissue paper, white or colored
  • Scissors
  • Repositionable adhesive spray (Nikki uses Krylon® Easy-Tack.)
  • Printer paper, 8½" x 11"
  • Cardboard
  • Printer, inkjet or laser and computer
  • 8" x 10" digital images
  • Matte Finish spray, for Inkjet printers (Nikki uses Krylon.)

1. Cut the tissue paper to the size of your printer paper.

2. In a well-ventilated area, spray a light coat of repositionable adhesive onto the printer paper. Press the paper to a piece of cardboard and then peel the paper off the cardboard to remove some of the tackiness.

3. Smooth the tissue paper onto the sticky side of the printer paper, starting from the center and working outward, avoiding wrinkles.

4. Trim any tissue paper that extends past the edges of the printer paper to keep it from jamming in your printer.

5. Place the combined sheet in the printer's paper tray and print the digital image. Note that some colored tissue papers may have a coating that resists ink, so allow those sheets to dry completely after printing before handling them.

Note: For inkjet printers without pigment-based inks, Nikki recommends sealing the image with a fixative so that the ink will not bleed.

6. Gently peel the tissue paper off of the printer paper. The tissue paper will curl, but that's okay. You now have a custom-printed tissue paper with your own digital art images ready to use.

You could use this paper in collage, encaustic, mixed-media paintings, art journaling, and even jewelry.

Technology has really expanded the possibilities in art, from creating it to learning about it. From our eMags to digital versions of Cloth Paper Scissors magazine, you can get your collage, mixed-media, and digital art fix on the go, any time. Be sure to check out all our digital media offerings.

P.S. Have you been saving the tissue and wrappings from your gifts? Tell me about it in the comments section below.


Blog, Mixed-Media Techniques