The Blank Wall

In our kitchen, there is a big wall that we always took our family pictures in front of. It’s what I like to call “builder beige”, like the rest of our house, though it’s not really the builder beige you might think. It does have some actual color and will take on different hues depending on the light. It’s subtle, light, and it suffices for now.

The same wall housed the giant ONE collage in photos for Jameson’s birthday (for months since we left it up for quite some time), and then most recently it held newspaper.

I read somewhere that newspaper can be an effective way to help determine placement of frames. I have been collecting frames for over a year now, and I’m ready to make a photo collage on my wall.

The newspaper though wasn’t doing it for me. I couldn’t remember what each of the frames looked like. Some are thinner, some have modern styles, some have mattes. I wanted to balance this all out, and the newspaper wasn’t working for me. The one thing it did tell me was that I needed some smaller frames, which we picked up on clearance at Target.

We left it up for a couple weeks, cause we’re I’m slow.

Then I turned to my good old pal, photoshop (and my phone, because I was too lazy to take nice photos). First I took the photo you see above, of the wall with newspapers I had already cut out to the shape of my frames. Then I took pictures of the frames themselves.

Do you see where this is going? I made some photoshop magic happen. I took all my frame pictures, cropped them, and resized them to fit within the newspapers on the wall since I already knew they were the proper size. Then, I removed the newspaper in photoshop with the healing brush (works like magic).

Then I had my bunch of frames I could move around on the wall willy-nilly. (Yes, willy-nilly)

My first few designs looked something like this, because I wanted to try and follow a diagonal up the stairs. I couldn’t find the right balance though. I wasn’t satisfied with this.

Finally I came up with a design that lived by itself on the wall, contained in itself. It could be on any wall, not just this wall. It looked more like a collective.

I sent it to Brian, and we decided to put it up this weekend (I was tired of newspaper on our walls, and frames overtaking the guest/craft room floor).

Jameson was a big help, of course.

The first step was figuring out where to start, and we decided the upper right was a good location. Then we made our first mistake, by just eyeballing it.

We did nearly the entire top row which everything else was to be based on before we realized the frame in the upper right was too far to the left.

So back Brian went, to move the upper right frame over by about 4ish inches. Much better after that.

Learning from that mistake, Brian started laying out how much spacing should live between each of the frames and how wide that would make the collage. We still allowed for some flexibility, but we need to make sure everything would fit on the walls.

Jameson continued to be a big help.

This is also a great shot of his terrible haircut. Terrible.

Finally, after one failed nap later, Brian was putting up the last frame.

Observant folks will notice it doesn’t match my plan. That’s because, at the last minute, Brian decided he wanted to take one of the frames in to work with him (as was originally intended though he never had before).

With this frame out of the picture (so-to-speak), we made some last minute changes. I am not satisfied though so I will be finding a replacement for this frame to complete the wall and fulfill the vision I had before.

So it’s done, but not done. Because there’s still the critical piece missing, you know, where I actually fill the frames with photos.

Knowing myself, it will probably be another month or more before I fill the frames, but I’m already happy with how this looks. It makes the kitchen feel more complete, and Jameson LOVES to point at big picture of him and Sasha.

Speaking of, we are teaching him to say Sasha (and Uh-oh). He is practicing these two syllable words frequently and is pretty close. He is still completely missing the “S” sound in Sasha though. Adorable!

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