I knew something Pinteretsy (definition: the state of being consumed by Pinterest-inspired topics/projects) was up after Dustin spent an entire weekend designing and building our gorgeous DIY headboard from salvaged wood pallets. Once that project was completed, he proudly proclaimed one night at dinner, “I’m going to start a new project! Would you like a photography board?” The evidence was clear– Dustin discovered Pinterest!
This week’s edition of “Dustin Made Something Amazing” features a tutorial for a DIY photography board. For many readers this DIY project is not a necessity, but if you’re a blogger, a good photography board is an important prop.
A well-done photography board can take a photo from “Mmm that looks good!” to “Woah! That looks amazing!!!” While a photography board is not the most important factor in good food photography, this prop can certainly help add that extra little touch of character or color your photos may need. I like to keep a variety of photography boards in my studio to help add character to my photos. After all, we eat with our eyes first. A little extra touch of character and beauty never hurts!
Dustin’s DIY photography board is easy to make (says the girl who took photos and never picked up a saw), and only requires a couple of hours of hands-on time. This board is made from a salvaged wood pallet, just like the headboard, which means you don’t have to spend a lot of money to create a beautiful customized background for your photos.
To guide you through this project I asked Dustin to share a complete step-by-step tutorial.
Dustin, they’re ready!
Hey, it’s Dustin here! I’m excited to share another easy tutorial with you. Before we get started on this project you’re going to need one wood pallet. You can get a wood pallet for free from local businesses around your area (check Craigslist). I prefer a wood pallet because this type of wood is a rough-cut which allows you to create a very distressed look.
Let’s get started…
DIY Photography Board
- wood pallets
- circular saw
- pry bar
- brad nailer
- nails 3/4"- 1" depending on the thickness of the wood pallet boards
- paint in desired color
- sandpaper 80 grit
- hand sander
- wood glue
Step One: Source and Cut the Wood
The trade off from using free wood is that you have to disassemble the boards yourself. To save time, cut off the ends of the pallet with a saw so you don’t have to bother pulling out all the nails. By doing this you only need to focus on pulling out the nails from the middle section of the pallet.
Step Two: Secure the Wood
Lay out six long boards on two side boards. Glue the six boards to the side boards for longer durability, then nail the boards to the sideboards. I used a electric brad nailer to secure the boards. The length of the nails will depend on the thickness of your boards. I mainly used 3/4-inch size nails.
Step Three: Paint and Sand
I painted one side of the board an antique white color with a satin finish. This photography board only needed one coat of paint. Let the paint dry overnight. The next day sand the painted board with 80 grit sandpaper until you achieve the distressed look you desire.
The end product is simply amazing. I can’t believe how beautiful the photography board turned out by just using free recycled wood.
Side One (Painted and Sanded Wood):
Side Two (Plain Wood):
Wow, what a great idea……Photo Boards will add a new dimension to me photography. Like all great ideas this is simple and easy to action.
I am new reader and love everything that you and your family are doing. Are such an inspiration to me. I am just finishing my diploma in Holistic Nutrition and I am trying to figure it out how I am going to create my audience and connect with all the beautiful community and provide service to all… In the process I am being doing some trials on photography and read your tips and advice on equipment. Do you have any suggestion on lighting? All our pictures have a lovely look. I know there is a lot time editing and putting all the scenario together but I was wondering if you have any suggestion on lighting for beginners.
Thank you so much. I’m so glad you’re enjoying the site. The best light is natural light from the sun. Not direct sunlight just the ambient from a window. And you want to shoot with the light to the side or behind the subject. Best to you.
Hi, I like your tutorial. I’m curious, what are your shoes in the last picture?
I like the rustic look and potential of this backdrop as an alternative to my current bright and white style. Going to pop this under the husbands nose …
Wonderful, Toni! Enjoy!!
I love this idea Kristin, thanks for sharing! Being a blogger, I’ve realized how many props I need. But this is idea is great… have my husband make it! 😉
You’re welcome, Suzi! Let me know if you (or the hubby ;)) make a photo board …I’d love to see it!!
I’m new follower! I’m in love with your posts !! Such beauty and encouragement to eat clean!! Your photos seem to just drag me into the joy of “creating good THINGs “Wish me luck! AND I’m so proud of your honey, such great projects he’s sharing with us!! Looking forward to all the wonderful things you two come up with!
Hey Donna, Welcome to Live Simply. Thank you so much for your sweet words of encouragement! Best of luck with the projects!!