DIY: Photo Board

I would really like to give credit where credit is due, but I can’t for the life of me remember where I first saw this project. And I can’t remember exactly how they did it, I had to just go from memory (which worked out just fine, as you’ll see). If someone has seen this idea elsewhere, please provide the link in a comment so that I can attribute credit. Thank you!

In a nutshell, what I wanted was a surface to place objects on to photograph them, approximately 18″ x 12″.  I wanted it to have a light colored side and a dark one. I wasn’t concerned about the condition of the final board, in other words, I’m all for it becoming distressed throughout its life. I think that will only add to the look of the photos themselves.



  • 18 – 12″ long paint stir sticks (our local hardware store gave to me for free)
  • hot glue gun and glue sticks
  • heavy duty glue
  • paint  – I purchased the sample sizes , 8 ounces each, from our local hardware store at $3 each and I have enough left over to make about 10 more boards
  • blade / scraper
  • clamps
  • wax paper
  • small paint brush
  • newspaper or other surface for working on (I used my cutting mat because it’s two sided and one side was getting pretty worn)

This is so simple that I’m just going to do a quick 1, 2, 3 for you. The final board is a length of sticks glued together, with 2 sticks on each long edge, both sides, glued. See photos for clarification.

  1. For the base, using your hot glue gun, glue the edges of the sticks together until you are satisfied with the size of your board. I just put a dot of hot glue at both ends, knowing the length of the board will have sticks across them, securing everything. So no need to go wild with the hot glue the entire length of each stick.
  2. Take a blade and scrape off any bits of dried glue that are showing (mine isn’t perfect even after scraping, but yours could be!).
  3. Wait an hour to let the hot glue set. I used a low heat gun so I definitely wanted to give it time to set.
  4. Paint the sticks you’ve just glued, both sides. TIP – place a large piece of wax paper or newspaper under your board when you paint it, if you’re crazy enough like me to use your cutting mat. Just a good way to protect it and still have it for future DIY projects.
  5. Paint the edge sticks as well (we bought two yard sticks and cut them each in half).
  6. Apply the heavy duty glue on the edges, placing the edge sticks across the board sticks.
  7. Clamp – place a bit of wax paper under each clamp so the clamp doesn’t remove paint when you remove the clamp.
  8. Let set 24 hours.
  9. Ta da! You too, will have a photo board!

Paint and stir sticks

One side of our sticks had the store’s name on it, the other side was blank. But it didn’t matter because I planned to paint both sides. Here are all the sticks glued together, ready to be painted.



See the glue? That’s what needs to be scraped off. IMG_7992


These are the edge sticks which will go across the board sticks.IMG_8004

Let the clamping begin!IMG_8030

Ta da! A board for your photography!



What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s