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How To Strengthen Tracing Paper Sketches

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Tracing Paper Backing Support

I found myself being very careful "as one should" when handing, sketches that are on tracing paper.
At the same time, due to them being translucent, you don't get to fully enjoy the artwork drawn.
So I started to add a backing support that strengthened and improved the viewing of the pieces.
Hope you find this guide helpful.

Step 1: Supplies
Transparent Photo Corners - You could get these in white, but I think the transparent ones are best.
Heavy High GSM Archival Paper Acid Free - I went for 200 GSM but anything around 100+ should be thick enough



Step 3: Locate tracing paper sketch


Step 4: Place sketch on the Archival paper and mark the corners


Step 5: Place Corner Stickers On


Step 6: Check to see if everything fits correctly

Step 7: Mark where the cut will be, remove artwork and cut the paper to size.
I found using a sharp blade and metal ruler worked really well.
The cut was very clean and straight.



Step 8: Inspect to see if everything is correctly aligned,
make adjustments or repeat process if cut was not neat.



Step 9: Place sketch in and enjoy the added support and clarity.


Step 10 "OPTIONAL" : This large sketch was falling out, due to it being folded in half.
The following steps will show how to remedy this.


Step 11: Adding more support to large pieces


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For the corners, you can get even safer making them with archival paper and taping the paper with archival tape. So there is no glue from the corners nor plastic corners itself.

Just cut a stripe of paper and bend it to make the corner. The place the archival tape on the borders of the paper. I’ll take some pics!


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Is there a way to remove scotch tape from tracing paper?  One of my Lemmings cover drawings that’s on tracing paper was done on I think four separate sheets and taped together.  Because of this, the middle section folds awkwardly.  I’ve just unfolded a few times and have kept it folded since.  Is the tape going to effect the paper negatively long term?

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First you want to be sure that removing the tape won’t remove value: it’s not a tape added by some framer but the artist itself and it’s a part of how the drawing was done.

Then to remove the glue I use a rubber cement eraser.

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Here you have the corners made of paper. I’ve also made a custom matte for the Populous tracing as the paper sheet is completely irregular.

the board is acid free, not acid buffered. Commercially you’ll find tons of “fake” acid free stuff. You want to ask to professionals for the correct board and tape.



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5 hours ago, Bronty said:

As soon as you said lemmings I knew who this was 🙂 hi Jeremy!

You could always remove the old acidic tape and replace with artists tape as an option  

Hi Dan!  Yup it’s me   

Ok, I was nervous to attempt removal but I’m going to try once I buy a board.  I think it was Sanford that had mentioned me doing that long ago but I was always nervous I would tear the paper.  

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