Sunday, 23 June 2013

FOG Tuesday - Citrasolv™

I’m a little behind in posting a blog about our activities of June 11. We welcomed two new members to the group and had a great day altering magazine pages with Citrasolv™. The resulting pages are quite interesting and have, so far, retained the lovely light lemony scent of the Citrasolv™. We have talked about Citrasolv™ in a previous post when were using it for image transfers.

Choose magazine pages that are full of colour, as they seem to work the best. National Geographic magazine has been touted as the best magazine to work with, though the year of publication and the inks that were used at that time did seem to have some bearing on the outcome of our altered pages. I used pages from a local arts magazine and those worked very well.

The Citrasolv™ works by dissolving the inks on the page, most notably black, so text pages will just end up a muddy mess. Liberally apply the Citrasolv™ to the pages making sure that you have layers of newspaper beneath as well as a plastic covering for your work surface. The solvent will eat through certain types of vinyl gloves so try to find “nitrile” gloves, as they are a synthetic rubber with no latex. Also use glass containers for the solvent and natural bristle brushes.

Layer your pages face to face to that the magic starts to happen and wait for about 20 minutes before you peek. Be prepared for a lot of patience after painting your pages with the solvent as it does take some time for the inks to start to move.

Peel apart your pages and set out to dry. Once they are dry you can use stencils, cotton swabs, more solvent or alcohol based hand wipes and continue to alter the pages as seen in the photos to the left.

Citrasolv™ has become a mainstay in the tool kits for mixed media artists and they even have an Artist’s Section on their website.


  1. is there anything else I can use to alter magazine images other than citrasolv
    Some people use pine sol for image transfer and I've seen it working ok
    Could that work in altering images from magazines like national geographic

    1. Kostas, there are other solvent type products out there, but I have only ever used the CitraSolv for the type of transfers I do to fabrics and they are always successful. Two names you can google are Xylene Blender Pens and ChartPak Blender Pens. CitraSolv also smells good, but use in a well ventilated area.