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DIY Photo Block with an Image Transfer

Use your Instagram images to create this easy wood photo block! You’ll use Mod Podge photo transfer medium to make it happen.

Skills Required: Intermediate. It definitely takes some practice to do a Mod Podge photo transfer. You’ll be applying images to all six sides of a wood block using the medium. I remember you try on a piece of scrap wood or dollar store wood item first.

DIY Photo Block with an Image Transfer

If you’ve been around this blog for any length of time then you know that I love my pugs – and if you follow my Instagram stream then you really know that I love my pugs. So I made this Mod Podge photo block so that everyone who visits my loft will know just how much my piggies mean to me.

It’s especially important because I have so many pictures on Instagram of my Nellie, who passed away in 2012 (and I still miss her!).

This photo block is so, so easy to make and would make a great gift . . . and it uses Mod Podge photo transfer medium. Which is a blast to use. Here’s how this photo transfer to wood is done!

Photo Block DIY

Gather These Supplies

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First you need to get your Instagram photos off of your phone/photo stream and into a program like PowerPoint or Word so you can print them.

I plugged my iPhone in and downloaded them, but you can send them to yourself as well (via e-mail on your smartphone).

NOTE: If there is text on the image, you’ll need to reverse the image so that the text transfers correctly.

Once they are in the program of your choice and sized to fit the block, you need to print them.

You need to make sure that the ink from your printer is DRY toner so that it doesn’t smear. Laserjet will work, and some inkjet printers.

My printer is an HP inkjet and it works. However, a lot of inkjet printers smear, so you need to do a test.

If the inkjet ink smears, get your photo copied at a FedEx store or other place where you have access to a laserjet printer.

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Cut all of the photos out and set them in a pile. You are going to do each photo separately.

Use the sponge brush to apply photo transfer medium to the front of the photo – so much that you can’t see the photo because the image is completely white.

Doing this on the silicone mat makes it easy to pick the picture off (and protects your work surface).

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Smooth the image down carefully onto the block. Smooth, smooth, smooth.

Wipe away any excess that comes out the side. Repeat with the remaining five sides and let this dry for at least 24 hours. This is very important!

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When the 24 hours have passed, you can get the photos wet. I did this one side at a time as well. Why are you getting them wet? Because . . .

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you are going to rub the paper off and reveal the image! Rub very gently or you WILL rub the image off.

Here’s how I do it.

I rub lightly and rub a bunch of paper away. Then I let the image dry so I can see where I need to rub more.

I do it in stages rather than trying to do too much at once. I did all six sides at once, let the block dry and then wet it again where I need to remove more paper.

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The finished block will end up looking slightly faded and vintage-y – this is normal. You don’t have to add Mod Podge Hard Coat to your block, but it does darken the photos a bit, which I wanted.

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Here’s one side of my finished block . . .

Use your Instagram images to create this easy wood photo block! You'll use Mod Podge photo transfer medium to make it happen.

And here’s the finished project again. I love it! It’s proudly being displayed on my bookshelf.

Yield: 1 block

Photo Block

Use your Instagram images to create this easy wood photo block! You'll use Mod Podge photo transfer medium to make it happen.

Learn how to make a wooden picture block using Instagram images and Mod Podge Photo Transfer Medium.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Active Time 1 hour
Dry Time 1 day
Total Time 1 day 1 hour 30 minutes
Difficulty Intermediate

Materials

  • Wood block - 3 1/2" square
  • Mod Podge Photo Transfer Medium
  • Mod Podge Hard Coat
  • Mod Podge silicone mat
  • Instagram photos printed out on a dry toner printer - 6

Tools

  • Sponge brush
  • Scissors

Instructions

  1. Print out the photos on a dry inkjet or laserjet printer. Make sure they are sized to fit the block.
  2. Use the sponge brush to apply photo transfer medium to the front of the photo - obscuring it completely.
  3. Smooth the image down carefully onto the block.
  4. Wipe away any excess that comes out the side. Repeat with the remaining five sides and let this dry for at least 24 hours.
  5. When the 24 hours have passed, wet the photos and rub lightly to remove the paper. Let the image dry and repeat. It's better to work in several stages so that you don't rub the image away.
  6. The finished block will end up looking slightly faded and vintage-y - this is normal. Add a layer of Mod Podge Hard Coat to darken the photos and seal the block.
  7. Let dry completely before displaying.

Did You Make This Project?

Please leave a rating or share a photo on Pinterest!


If you enjoyed this picture block project, I’d love for you to check out these other photo transfer ideas:

Xin

Wednesday 13th of November 2013

Hi Amy! This is such a neat idea! I also want to try this on my own but couldn't figure out where to get the wood block square that you've used. Can I ask where you got it? Thanks!

Amy

Wednesday 13th of November 2013

Hi Xin! I got it from Michaels.

janymk

Friday 16th of August 2013

Can I photo transfer my T- shirts using Mod Podge Gloss? Or I need to use the photo transfer medium, specifically? Thanks!!!

Amy

Friday 16th of August 2013

Hi Janymk! There are some tutorials out there with photo transfers using Gloss - but I don't know how to do it on fabric (you'd have to Google a tutorial to see if you can find one). But the photo transfer medium specifically works on fabric :D

Amy mclean

Monday 12th of August 2013

Do you use photo paper to print the photos, or regular paper-or even cardstock.....that is the only part I was unsure of, otherwise I cannot wait to do this project, we actually have 6 pets, perfect for this project!!

Amy

Monday 12th of August 2013

Hi Amy! I just used regular paper! My printer is a dry ink printer though - if yours is inkjet, you'll need to follow the instructions here: https://modpodgerocksblog.com/learn-how-to-mod-podge

Katrina

Saturday 22nd of June 2013

What is considered a dry ink printer?? I have a inkjet and a photosmart printer. Thanks!

Amy

Sunday 23rd of June 2013

Hi Katrina! I don't know how to find out if yours is a dry inkjet - but my HP is. I would honestly do a test.

Ashlee

Tuesday 5th of March 2013

Great tutorial! I love your little block! Your pug is just too stinkin' cute!

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