Monday, February 22, 2016

DIY Project: Photo Backdrops

Being that I’ve changed the direction of my blog I find myself in a whole new world full of lots of great things to post about, before I posted about running and a sweaty picture with Mother Nature was perfect. A couple of weeks ago I started this journey of transitioning my blog and I quickly realized that it was a different ball game. Not too long ago I posted a quick recipe here and as I looked at other blogs for inspiration I realized maybe it need to do something about how I set up my pictures.
Turn the 2X4 into 2- 2X2 panels

My wheels started turning and I set out on an easy and cheap way to make some of my very own backdrops for my post pictures. I think I did pretty good :)
I headed off to the Home Depot (one of my personal favorite stores) – I’ll pause here and give you some much needed back story…
If you know me I have a secret love for power tools. My brother was a big influence to me over the years he has always been a jack-of-all-trades but he has a passion for creating too, anything from jewelry to knocking out walls he is always ready to go and along the way he’s taught me a lot. A few years ago he was a big part of helping the hubs and me build our little oasis in the back yard – a 16X16 pavilion that took a lot of serious work and lots of serious power tools. I think of remodeling, painting and creating stuff all.the.time. a lot of it was put on the backburner due to training and time restraint but right now I’m ready to knock out some projects!
So this is what I found at the depot – 2 ft. x 4 ft. Project Panel $5.97 – basically a very thin panel with wood veneer on both sides. It’s very light and easy to carry.
One of fav tools!
Cheap Paint Tip: I was looking to make this project on the cheap just in case it didn’t pan out. So I headed over to the paint counter and went straight for the “rejected paints” this little pile of wonders comes from paints that didn’t quite turn out the right shade or the customer failed to come back and pick it up after ordering it. I scored two perfect shades one dark tan color $ .50 and one grey blue $2.00. Perfect.
I did pick up a quart of white paint that was about $9.00, I just looked for the cheapest they had in a quart and then I asked them to tint it to an antique white.
My last item was wood glue, I did some Pinterest research on how to crackle paint and this was one of my main ingredients.  I grabbed a large bottle $6.00 (for all future endeavors!)
Once we made it back home we used a Circular Saw to cut my panel right in half now I had two pieces of 2X2 panels each one two sided. I used my sander to take off any rough edges so I wouldn’t get any splinters while handling the wood.

Next I went for my crackle painting experiment. First I painted on side of my panel the base color you want to show through the crackle. Once dry, I “painted” on the wood glue on nice and thick, you let the glue dry a little and once it gets a little tacky you paint on the top color – and the magic begins once it starts drying the crackle effect starts to happen!!
My first go around I didn’t let the wood glue get tacky enough, not very much crackle but I still like the finished product. The second go around came out perfect! Now I had two backdrops! I let them dry and I flipped over one panel and I decided to stain this one for a nice wood grain backdrop.
I find myself with one last panel and I think I’m going to go stark white with this one to give a blank canvass of sort. Although I received my Sephora catalog in the mail recently and the front cover was done with turf as the backdrop… maybe I’ll see if I can find some turf to glue to my last panel and then I’ll have a green grass backdrop for the Spring and Summer!!

The Goods:

4X2 Project Panel - $5.97

Tan Paint - $.50

Blue Paint - $2.00

White Quart of Paint - $9.00

Wood Glue - $6.00

Paint Brush - $1.50

Grand Total - $25.00

I think I could have made this whole project for even less if I would have thought about alllllllll the random paints I have in the attic!! I will say I didn’t use more than ¼ of any of the paints or the glue which means I have plenty for future projects.
Panel one in action! Just a little bit of crackle.

Panel two in action - Lots of crackle!

Panel Three - Plain wood panel with Dark Stain.
Little Bears planter box :) still lots of paint left over!


  1. Sooooooo inspired!! Great great idea!!!!!! Different from the usual white board backdrop. Love it!

  2. This is fantastic! I've always used a white foam board for flat images, but I like this idea for a backdrop as well!! Thanks for sharing & can't wait to see what other things you add to this new direction!!

  3. What a great idea, I will have to try this.

  4. OMG! So fun! Will have to try my hand at it!

  5. Neat idea! May need add this on my list.