Momi Lotta

brush, paintbrushes, basic, tips, acrylic, tutorial

Transfer a sketch onto the painting surface

Table of Contents

How do you start a painting? With a pencil sketch? Or are you very adventurous and do it directly on the canvas? Alla prima? Anyway, everyone has their favorite method. I’m telling you how I transfer my pencil sketches to the canvas or other surfaces.

1- Make a sketch.

You get an idea and you draw it. Some people make small sketches and others make very detailed ones. 

I usually do a monochrome sketch in my sketchbook.

brush, paintbrushes, basic, tips, acrylic, tutorial

2- Scan or take a photo.

Then, I Take a picture of it with an Ipad.  I use Procreate to trace the contour lines, avoiding shading and small details.

I use Procreate to do a color test and choose the palette I work with too.

3- Print

Print the line drawing. When the final dimension of the piece is bigger than an A4 size sheet, I print it in parts and tape them together. A4 is the maximum size my printer prints.

brush, paintbrushes, basic, tips


To transfer used two methods. One is with graphite transfer paper, and the other is with HB graphite pencil. The technique is the same, but one gives more work than the other.


Graphite paper is easy to use. You put a sheet of graphite paper between your print and the final surface and then use a pencil to trace over your design (the graphite side face down). But many are messy and not easily erased.

The other method is to paint with the HB graphite pencil on the back of the print. Basically, it’s like making your own graphite paper. I use HB pencil because this is soft enough to transfer but not too much to make everything dirty.  This one takes more time but you can easily erase it.

brush, paintbrushes, basic, tips
brush, paintbrushes, basic, tips
brush, paintbrushes, basic, tips

Try these techniques and decide which one is best for you.

Please leave a comment below, and let me know how it went.

 You can also share with me your practices on instagram with the hashtag #momilottapaint. I will be very happy to see your work.


How to start painting with acrylic.

Transfer a sketch to the final surface


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