Photo Project: Why You Should Create a Photo Inspiration Corkboard - Digital Photography School
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Photo Project: Why You Should Create a Photo Inspiration Corkboard

36x48 inch Photo Inspiration Corkboard

36x48 inch corkboard.

Like any project around the house, I thought about doing this almost a year ago and finally put it up in my office last month.  It turned out so well that I wanted to share it with you all.

This is a 36×48 inch natural corkboard, purchased at the Container Store with silver tacks.  It took some time to plan out the sizes and make the prints, but it was a fairly simple project.  To get a better sense of the size, the print on the top left is 8×12 inches.  I found that instead of planning out the entire thing, it was easier to fill up a third of it with 8×12 prints and then plan how to fill in the rest of the space.

The best thing is that friends love it, clients love it, and most importantly, my wife loves it.  It’s helped show off my work in an interesting way that engages people and it shows off the prints without any glass in front to show visitors the true quality of the prints and paper.

Also, framing can get expensive, and especially for areas like your office, your studio, or whenever you do your photo work, you will undoubtedly get the urge to change the photos on your walls constantly.  Framing makes that tough to do, as I have learned the hard way.  With a board like this, all you have to do is print and replace.

It is a fantastic way to work on a long term project of images that you can play with and change over time to see how the images work with each other.  I chose to organize mine around a specific set of my street photography and even after a month I plan on changing it and adding to it.  I am eventually going to add two more board and put painting lights above them all.

There are also many other ways to do this.  After I posted about the board on my blog, an Australian reader named Kristen sent me a photo of a version she had created.

Here’s what she said:

“I bought three, 40 inch by 20 inch canvases.  Then, I nailed the canvas frames together to make a single 40 inch by 60 inch canvas.  Over the top of that, I attached mat black material and put a hanging string along the back of the frame.

I used hot glue to stick 4 velcro bits for each photo on the black material, then I put the other side of the 4 velcros bits on the back of each photo.  Every 6 months or so I take down the 24 photos and I can put up new photos or re show old photos, because they all attach via velcro – so I can take down and put up photos to suit.”

There are so many ways to do something like this.  So get started!  And if you’ve done something similar, please share it with us in the comments!

Photo Corkboard

 

 

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James Maher is a professional photographer based in New York, whose primary passion is documenting the unique personalities and stories of the city. He is the author of the e-book, "The Essentials of Street Photography" and runs photo tours of New York. Visit his website or say hi on Facebook or Google+.

  • http://www.mikegarrard.co.uk Mike Garrard

    Very tempted to get straight to work on this now! Now to find a space to hang it…!

  • Donnie

    This is awesome!

  • Juan

    Nice. I’m thinking of doing it. Thanks for posting. By the way, great snaps you put in there.

  • http://mpiremedia.org Blake Murphy

    This is awesome! I think I’ll start doing it.

  • Lakshman

    I am moving to new house soon. This may be the perfect project to start a new beginning there. Cool shots by the way. Thanks for sharing…

  • Paul Moyer

    This is great! An awesome way to solve the problem of always wanting to change the photos on my wall but never doing so because it costs a lot to buy frames or canvas prints each time.

  • http://blogs.gonomad.com/traveltalesfromindia/ Mridula

    I used to have one such board in my office but then I changed the room and never got the soft board again. Maybe it is time to it at home this time.

    http://blogs.gonomad.com/traveltalesfromindia/

  • http://designtravellife.wordpress.com Lisa

    cool. i’ve always wanted to do something like this! i just have to take the time to finally do so. :)

  • ray sheely

    It’s like an organized refrigerator door that my grand kids use to post their school “art” papers. Today is payday, so I’m going to purchase a black magnetic board (vs cork) and hang-up images using small magnetized “tacks”. Then photograph the finished project. I enjoy creating collages. Gotta run…stores are opening soon!

  • http://www.thegadgetprofessor.com Don Baine

    Great creative way to display your photographs. I enjoyed reading your post

  • Scottc

    This is a cool idea, thanks for sharing it.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/lendog64/5872172168/

  • R’laine

    Perfect! I now know what I can do with a bland, blank wall in my living room. Thanks for sharing this brilliant idea.

  • JacksonG

    Great idea James, I love Kristen’s take on it also, the black background looks fantastic.

  • Shirley

    Love it, going to make one. I think it will inspire me to shoot more.

  • Liisa

    I love this idea. I will be creating one to see how my skills are progressing through out the year. It will be interesting to see what photos will be on the board in Dec :-)

  • LFilmer

    Love the velcro on the black idea. We just blue-tack pictures to our wall. It allows us to make the photo-collage creep across the wall and guests always comment on it and spend time looking at it. Not as classy as whats on show here though

  • http://fotoframes.in(TBD) Saju

    great and simple concepts, both the ideas are good, i hsould be able to do them. will upload the results after ti….

  • Alton

    A very nice idea!! Thank you for sharing!!
    I will try this at home to showcase some of my photographs :-)

  • Julie

    My mind is busy. I like the black, but like the pin board too. How to combine the two?! ;). Thank you for the idea!

  • http://www.jamesmaherphotography.com James Maher

    I’m happy to hear that you all like the idea so much! It was so much fun to put up.

  • powelli

    I’ve just tried a similar project using a cheap photo frame with string and wooden pegs. Inspired by a (much more polished) example I saw online.

    [eimg url='http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8071/8414686552_bd3966f2f3_c.jpg' title='8414686552_bd3966f2f3_c.jpg']

  • http://martybugs.net/blog Martin

    I use a magnetic whiteboard and some cheap magnets to achieve the same thing: http://martybugs.net/blog/blog.cgi/creativity/MagneticPhotoBoard.html

  • Clarissa

    This is a great idea for my classroom. I’ve got a pretty uninspiring notice board at the moment, I think I’ll ask each student to bring a photo they like and together they create an inspiration board for other students. Cheap and easy. Love it.

  • https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/myphotos Corinna

    I still have a huge fiberboard painted white. I used to fix photographs with staples? The staples make holes …. Is there a better way of fixing them?

  • Jim Legans, Jr

    I liked this idea, so I bought a 3′x5′ cork board, had my wife pick some of my photos and print them. It’s been do much fun I have two boards up and am heading to the store to buy two more.

    Thanks for the great idea!

  • Heidi Y

    Yes! Great idea- I have often thought about it doing it, but you just clinched it for me…off to find a cork board :-)

Some older comments

  • Heidi Y

    February 17, 2013 11:13 am

    Yes! Great idea- I have often thought about it doing it, but you just clinched it for me...off to find a cork board :-)

  • Jim Legans, Jr

    February 7, 2013 03:58 am

    I liked this idea, so I bought a 3'x5' cork board, had my wife pick some of my photos and print them. It's been do much fun I have two boards up and am heading to the store to buy two more.

    Thanks for the great idea!

  • Corinna

    January 28, 2013 06:13 am

    I still have a huge fiberboard painted white. I used to fix photographs with staples? The staples make holes .... Is there a better way of fixing them?

  • Clarissa

    January 27, 2013 12:24 am

    This is a great idea for my classroom. I've got a pretty uninspiring notice board at the moment, I think I'll ask each student to bring a photo they like and together they create an inspiration board for other students. Cheap and easy. Love it.

  • Martin

    January 26, 2013 05:49 pm

    I use a magnetic whiteboard and some cheap magnets to achieve the same thing: http://martybugs.net/blog/blog.cgi/creativity/MagneticPhotoBoard.html

  • powelli

    January 26, 2013 04:17 am

    I've just tried a similar project using a cheap photo frame with string and wooden pegs. Inspired by a (much more polished) example I saw online.

    [eimg url='http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8071/8414686552_bd3966f2f3_c.jpg' title='8414686552_bd3966f2f3_c.jpg']

  • James Maher

    January 26, 2013 03:50 am

    I'm happy to hear that you all like the idea so much! It was so much fun to put up.

  • Julie

    January 26, 2013 02:04 am

    My mind is busy. I like the black, but like the pin board too. How to combine the two?! ;). Thank you for the idea!

  • Alton

    January 25, 2013 07:54 pm

    A very nice idea!! Thank you for sharing!!
    I will try this at home to showcase some of my photographs :-)

  • Saju

    January 25, 2013 06:30 pm

    great and simple concepts, both the ideas are good, i hsould be able to do them. will upload the results after ti....

  • LFilmer

    January 25, 2013 05:50 pm

    Love the velcro on the black idea. We just blue-tack pictures to our wall. It allows us to make the photo-collage creep across the wall and guests always comment on it and spend time looking at it. Not as classy as whats on show here though

  • Liisa

    January 25, 2013 03:18 pm

    I love this idea. I will be creating one to see how my skills are progressing through out the year. It will be interesting to see what photos will be on the board in Dec :-)

  • Shirley

    January 25, 2013 11:30 am

    Love it, going to make one. I think it will inspire me to shoot more.

  • JacksonG

    January 25, 2013 10:58 am

    Great idea James, I love Kristen's take on it also, the black background looks fantastic.

  • R'laine

    January 25, 2013 10:29 am

    Perfect! I now know what I can do with a bland, blank wall in my living room. Thanks for sharing this brilliant idea.

  • Scottc

    January 25, 2013 07:44 am

    This is a cool idea, thanks for sharing it.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/lendog64/5872172168/

  • Don Baine

    January 25, 2013 06:00 am

    Great creative way to display your photographs. I enjoyed reading your post

  • ray sheely

    January 25, 2013 01:32 am

    It's like an organized refrigerator door that my grand kids use to post their school "art" papers. Today is payday, so I'm going to purchase a black magnetic board (vs cork) and hang-up images using small magnetized "tacks". Then photograph the finished project. I enjoy creating collages. Gotta run...stores are opening soon!

  • Lisa

    January 24, 2013 08:58 pm

    cool. i've always wanted to do something like this! i just have to take the time to finally do so. :)

  • Mridula

    January 24, 2013 08:26 pm

    I used to have one such board in my office but then I changed the room and never got the soft board again. Maybe it is time to it at home this time.

    http://blogs.gonomad.com/traveltalesfromindia/

  • Paul Moyer

    January 24, 2013 01:55 pm

    This is great! An awesome way to solve the problem of always wanting to change the photos on my wall but never doing so because it costs a lot to buy frames or canvas prints each time.

  • Lakshman

    January 24, 2013 11:22 am

    I am moving to new house soon. This may be the perfect project to start a new beginning there. Cool shots by the way. Thanks for sharing...

  • Blake Murphy

    January 24, 2013 10:01 am

    This is awesome! I think I'll start doing it.

  • Juan

    January 24, 2013 08:37 am

    Nice. I'm thinking of doing it. Thanks for posting. By the way, great snaps you put in there.

  • Donnie

    January 24, 2013 08:19 am

    This is awesome!

  • Mike Garrard

    January 24, 2013 05:44 am

    Very tempted to get straight to work on this now! Now to find a space to hang it...!

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