When I first started blogging, it was at the beginning of the summer. June 26, 2013 to be exact.
Every time Lu and I were deciding what to do on the weekends, I’d always say, “Let’s go to Brooklyn Flea and look for chalkboards!” For some reason, I had it in my head that I wanted all of my food photos to have a chalkboard in the background that had the name of the dish scribbled on it.
I could never find the perfect chalkboard (perfect= one for less than $25), so I decided to make my own and of course, enlist Lu to help like last time.
The premise is easy: coat a surface with the “chalkboard” spray paint, let dry, coat again, and then let dry for 24 hours. Then, you spread chalk all over the “chalkboard,” wipe it down and voila – you should have a fully usable chalkboard.
Well, take my advice: DON’T use a foam board as your surface. Use wood – or even a cement wall. Just not foam board.
If you use foam board, the chalk won’t “stick” to the surface. I was really bummed out when I wiped down my layer of chalk and then tried to write my first word. It didn’t work.
However, the silver lining here is that, in the process, I created an awesome backdrop for my photos, which, if you haven’t noticed, I’ve been using a lot lately. I love how the black surface and black backdrop looks in photos.
Like this one:
Or this one:
To use the board, just place it down on a table (I use our living room coffee table) and place your dish on top – it makes an edgy surface for your photos.
Or, you can use it as a backdrop – just lean it up and shoot with it in the background.
It definitely sets an interesting mood for your photos, don’t you think?
Now, how did I do it? Ehem – how did we do it?
How to Build a Chalkboard Photo Backdrop
First step: go to a Michaels store and buy the following items:
You’ll also need:
– Newspaper or a tarp to lay down underneath the foam board
Step 1: Lay down your newspapers over whatever surface you’ll be using to spray paint the foam board.
Step 2: Shake your can of spray paint and spray, in lines, over the entire foam board until it is entirely covered in spray paint.
Step 3: Let dry for 15-20 minutes or until completely dry.
Step 4: Repeat a coat.
Step 5: Rub chalk all over the “chalkboard” and then erase with the chalk eraser.
Step 6: It’s ready to use!
How to Make Gold Flatware
We also spent that day making gold flatware.
Like you see in this picture:
Lu’s a lucky guy, right? Spending his days at Michael’s and spray painting things for me. I know, I know. I spoil him.
First, you need to go to Michael’s and buy:
– Gold Spray Paint (this exact one is what I used – you only need this little bottle)
You’ll also need:
– Newspapers to lay down underneath the flatware to protect your surface.
– Whatever flatware you’d like to make gold.
Got everything? Great.
Step 1: Lay down the newspapers on whatever surface you’re using to spray paint.
Step 2: Lay down your flatware down in the middle of the newspapers.
Step 3: Spray paint over the flatware, coating completely.
Step 4: Let dry for at least 1 hour. Then, lightly rinse under running water and blot.
Step 5: If anything looks imperfect, feel free to do another coat.
Step 6: Use in your photography!
Were these tutorials helpful?