contact us

Tell us what's on your mind!

Use the form on the right to contact us.

 

Soto-Cordova Studios/ 285 Laughing Bird Hollow Rd.
Penland,North Carolina
USA

828-467-1472

cups.png

Transfer Application

ISLA TRANSFER HOW-TO:

In theory the transfer process is very simple but it has its little tricks and variables so

we encourage you to take the time to experiment on a variety of test tiles, especially

if this is your first time.

Below is a step-by-step guide on how to transfer onto a flat surface as well as onto sculpture or pottery.

Materials to have at hand:

 • ISLA TRANSFER SHEET 

• WET TO LEATHER-HARD CLAY

• ISLA BASIC WHITE SLIP (buy slip) OR ANY OTHER SLIP YOU MIGHT WANT TO EXPERIMENT WITH. 

BASIC WHITE SLIP (cone 04-10) recipe:

27 EPK

26 OM4

22 FLINT

20 FRIT 3124

5 ZIRCOPAX

________

100 grams

 

• SOFT SLIP BRUSH, 1-2 INCHES

• SMALL SOFT BRISTLE BRUSH (OPTIONAL)

• HEAT GUN/ HAIR DRYER (OPTIONAL– CAN HELP SPEED UP PROCESS)

• WATER MISTER OR HAIR SPRAY BOTTLE (WE ARE LOOKING FOR A FINE MIST AND NOT THE HEAVIER SQUIRT OF REGULAR SPRAY BOTTLE)

• RED / YELLOW MUDTOOLS RIBS

• SCISSORS

• WOODEN ROLLER (OPTIONAL)

 

TRANSFERRING ONTO A FLAT SURFACE

Apply slip on clay and on Isla Transfer: Brush approximately two generous coats 

of slip onto the surface of the clay and one light coat 

of slip onto the Isla Transfer, after misting the printed side of the sheet with water. The moisture of 

the slip and mist will rehydrate the ink and allow it to lift off.

For more detailed instructions

read below: 

1. With a brush, apply an even coat of slip to leather-hard clay.

Let the slip set until the glossy shine lessens to look more suede-like. Use a heat 

gun or hair dryer if you wish to speed things along.

  PHOTO A: Applying slip to leather hard clay 

PHOTO A: Applying slip to leather hard clay 

 

2. While the slip is setting, brush one or two coats of slip on top of the 

Isla Transfer (We recommend you cut a little bit of extra material to have a place for your fingers to hold onto the sheet.)

Let that set until it too loses the glossy shine. If the slip dries 

completely, it may chip off the paper.

  Photo B: Applying slip to Isla Transfer 

Photo B: Applying slip to Isla Transfer 

 

3. When both the clay site and the slipped transfer sheet have a slight sheen (a non-glossy, moist 

surface), lift the corners of the Isla Transfer and carefully apply its slipped surface to the 

clay surface. Summon the experiences of applying contact paper to a notebook in grade school!

Once the Isla Transfer touches the clay surface, do not readjust! 

  Photo C: Applying Isla Transfer to clay surface

Photo C: Applying Isla Transfer to clay surface

 

4. Pat the Isla Transfer gently in place with your fingertips or a sponge and let sit for a 

minute.

Tip: Have a small hair spray bottle (a.k.a. water mister) of water available 

to mist any dry spots on the back of the newsprint.

5. With the red rib tool (soft rubber), burnish the Isla Transfer while also gently guiding out as 

many air pockets as possible.If you are applying to sculptural pieces with uneven surfaces, using a make-up

sponge or a soft brush to gently guide the transfer into place works well. Let it set for another minute or two.

  Photo D: Red rib burnishing

Photo D: Red rib burnishing

 

6. Use the tip of a pin, needle tool or x-acto knife to make small piercings in any remaining air pockets. This

will remove bubbles and not destroy the image. Burnish again. At this point you might want to introduce

the stiffer yellow rib or the wooden roller.

  Photo E: Wooden roller in action

Photo E: Wooden roller in action

7. Apply heat to the back of your Isla Transfer as it lies on the clay for a few 

seconds with a hair dryer or heat gun until the newsprint achieves a semi-moist surface.

8. Slowly peel back one corner and check to see if the image is releasing off 

the Isla Transfer paper (photo F). If so, begin peeling the rest off. If not, place 

corner back on the clay, repeat step 5 and peel back again. If certain spots are 

not sticking, carefully place the paper down once more and gently burnish until 

the complete image transfers to the clay (photo G).

  Photo F: Checking corner of print transfer

Photo F: Checking corner of print transfer

  Photo G: Image Transfer on clay tile

Photo G: Image Transfer on clay tile

 

APPLICATION VARIATIONS:

AP SLIP ON CLAY AND REHYDRATING ISLA TRANSFER WITH WATER:

You can transfer onto uneven surfaces by rehydrating Isla Transfers with water and applying slip only to

the clay. This helps reduce bubbles, which are more common on uneven or textured surfaces.

1. Brush approximately three generous coats of slip onto a clay surface

and lightly mist water on the printed side of the Isla Transfer sheet. We

recommend allowing the ink to fully absorb the moisture and misting once or twice 

more (the moisture will rehydrate the ink and allow it to lift off easier). Once the 

Isla Transfer is ready, apply it to the surface, sponge/burnish into place, and mist again 

all over to ensure the moisture has absorbed through the paper. Look for dry 

spots (photo H)! These mean the image hasn’t become fully rehydrated. Burnish 

again and peel away slowly to check transfer accuracy. 

  Photo H: Dry spots on transfer sheet

Photo H: Dry spots on transfer sheet

 

MULTI-COLORED MONOPRINTS USING ISLA SLIPS

Using multiple slips you can color in particular areas of an Isla Transfer with a smaller soft bristle brush.

Our “Flechas” and “Cubos” transfers are great for this method!

Apply about three coats of slip (or less – your choice) and let the slip lose its glossy shine (photo I).

When finished applying colors use one of the previous transfer methods described to apply the Isla 

Transfer to the clay surface. When finished you’ll see that the colors you brushed 

in rest between the printed image and your background color (photo J).

  Photo I: Brushing in select areas with an alternative color

Photo I: Brushing in select areas with an alternative color

  Photo J: Monoprinted Cubos transfer

Photo J: Monoprinted Cubos transfer


CUTTING AND RESETTING PATTERNS (Coming soon!)

AFTER THE TRANSFER (Coming soon)


NOW WHAT?

You now have a screen-printed image transfer on clay! But the question now is what do 

you do with this process? Try applying Isla Transfers to your figurative sculptures, 

decorate a slab to use with a hump or slump mold for plates and bowls, and better yet, see 

how you can apply them to your wheel thrown pottery!