The images in this topics subsections are fired onto ceramic pieces. The graphics that are used are either older photo prints or digital images. Many of our digial images are of vintage cards or documents. Photos prints are scanned so that they become digital images. The images are taken into photoshop where they can be edited if needed. From Photoshop they are printed on a specialized laser color printer. This printer prints in ceramic toners rather than regular ink toners. The images are printed on a decal paper and then have a clear ceramic glaze on a backing paper laminated over the decal. The decals are then put onto tiles, plates, or other ceramic pieces that are already glazed with a transparent glazes. The pieces are moved to the kiln where they are fired at approximately 1550 degrees Farhenheit. The firing takes several hours. Once the kiln has cooled the pieces are removed and may have a cork or other type of backing glued onto them depending upon their intended use.
This system can be used to fire any digital photo onto a ceramic piece.
The steps in the process are:
- Get a digital image or scan a photo into the computer.
- Take the image into Photoshop for editing and processing
- Edit the photo if needed and change to a special color system
- Print the photo once it is prepared on the laser color print in ceramic toners
- Take the resulting decal and laminate a clear glaze coating onto it
- Put the decal on a ceramic piece that is already glazed
- Fire the ceramic piece making the decal printing permanent on the it
- Cool the kiln and remove the pieces that have been fired
- Put cork on the back or perform other post firing processing if needed
The ceramic image after firing is permanent on the piece, foodsafe, temperature safe, and color permanent.