Making Xerox selfies at home with your inkjet printer

Does your inkjet printer function like a Xerox machine? I didn’t think my Canon SuperTank printer would be able to make copies, because it doesn’t have a “copy” button on the printer.

Sigh, the lack of a Xerox machine.

Since I no longer work in an office, I don’t have immediate access to a Xerox machine. Oh the fun of the office copy machine, they are so much better than traditional scanners. Xerox machines are so much fun when they can be found in public spaces. Years ago my wife and I did a Xerox selfie on our honeymoon in Paris.

On Twitter, I started to lament how I missed these copying machines.

  1. The immediacy of making a print by pushing one button.
  2. The immediacy of being able to just walk over to a machine in under 30 seconds.
  3. The aesthetics of the Xerox print.
  4. Ability to adjust and make another print quickly.

Just as I tweeted that, I figured I’d google to see if my printer could indeed make easy copies.

You can try googling your printer too! I did the following search: g3200 copy. (Canon G3200 is the model of my printer) That resulted in this Canon article that explains how to use the copy feature with my printer!

Today I learned my inkjet has a copy feature—like a Xerox machine!

Oh wow. I just have to press the button labeled “Black” to make grayscale copies. If I want a color copy, I press “Color”. Seems so obvious, but I always assumed those buttons were for something else. Like, when printing something from my computer, and the printer got stuck, I would hit either the “Black” or “Color” button to get the printer going again. But nope. Those are literal copy buttons. Just like how a real copy machine works.

Of course, the first thing that I do is copy my face—just like a real Xerox machine!

My face scanned on the bed of a Canon Pixma G3200 SuperTank printer/scanner.

My first Xerox inkjet selfie uses so much ink that the office paper acts like a sponge. The ink absorbs and bleeds through to the back of the sheet. The resulting image is a nice ghost.

I’m not a fan of how much black ink this uses, but the bleed-through is rather charming. It makes the print feel even more like a print.

If you have a printer at home, maybe yours can make copies like this too.

If your printer can do this, please scan your face and share the pic with me! Super-bonus points if you snail mail the print to me! If you want to trade Xerox selfies, let me know. I’ll run off another copy of my face to trade.

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