There’s one wall in my house that makes all the other walls turn green with envy. It’s the show stopper whenever someone new comes into our home. It’s the one that gets the oohs and aahs as the other walls roll their eyes.
It’s this one…
Okay, so the walls are actually yellow. But you get the point.
As a photographer it’s difficult to narrow down images of my own family to display. It’s also difficult to find the time to actually print all the things I want to enjoy everyday.
About four years ago I decided the solution to this problem was a photo collage that showcased bits and pieces of our life as a family. I wanted each family member to get equal time (yes, even mama!) and I wanted the images to be a celebration of who we are not what we look like.
I started with a 36×36 gallery wrapped canvas that included nine 12×12 images. After a few years our family had grown out of the images on the wall and I decided it was time to update.
But I just couldn’t bear the thought of taking down those memories. So instead, I added to it. I created a new 36×36 canvas with a new set of nine images that celebrated our evolving life as a family. I hung them side by side so they appear as one piece.
And call me crazy, but I don’t think I plan to stop at two. The way I see it, that wall has room for six 36×36 canvases when it’s all said and done. And the neighbors may think I’ve gone cuckoo for cocoa puffs but I can’t imagine anything that will make me happier in 10 years than seeing the growth of my children from babies to toddlers to children to teens on that same wall.
Of course seeing my husband and I change from 20 somethings to, well, 40 somethings won’t be as much fun. But it sure beats the alternative, right?
If you’re interested in creating your own wall o’ canvas, here’s what to do:
- Open a blank Photoshop document in the dimensions of your finished canvas at 300 dpi. Mine is 36×36 but you can create yours in whatever size you’d like.
- Figure out how many images you’d like to place on your canvas, and how you’d like them to be divided up. My piece has nine 12×12 images.
- Open that many images and crop to the determined size at 300 dpi.
- Using the move tool, drag each image individually onto your large blank Photoshop document and position where you’d like them to be. It may take a bit of playing to hit upon the arrangement that you like.
- If your canvas lab allows you to create your own edge color (mine does) you can do that right in PSD. Start by flattening your finished canvas piece, and then creating a new blank Photoshop document at the size of your finished canvas PLUS the depth of your edges. If you’re planning to print a gallery wrapped canvas with a 2 inch edge wrap then you’ll add four inches to each length of your canvas (two inches on each side). So for my 36×36 canvas I would create a new document at 40×40 at 300 dpi.
- Change the color of your new Photoshop document to your desired edge wrap color.
- Drag your Photoshop document with pictures onto your Photoshop document with the edge color. Hint: View > Show > Grid and View > Rulers will help to make sure you have your image file positioned correctly on your background layer.
- Now flatten, save as a JPEG and order from your favorite canvas lab!