Make This Lettered Photo Wall Art in 30 Minutes or Less
As someone living in a small rental apartment, I’m always on the lookout for low-cost and low-commitment art to hang on my walls. After discovering the magic of inexpensive engineer prints, I wanted to combine this genius wall art concept with my new love of hand lettering to create a lettered photo poster, simply hung up by two trendy copper binder clips. Thinking “No way José” to lettering this yourself? Check out our Hand Lettering online class, built for beginners and wrapped up in 90 minutes flat. To learn how to take the perfect photo to use as your canvas, take our Intro to Travel Photography online class and brush up on those photography skills!
— 18 x 24-inch engineer prints, in full color and black & white (we printed ours at FedEx Office)
— Tombow brush pen in black
— skinny black pen
— painter’s tape
— binder clips
— copper spray paint
1. Spray paint your binder clips with a metallic finish and set aside to dry.
2. Practice your lettering on some scrap paper.
3. Tape down your black and white practice print and write your word or phrase on top of it.
4. Layer your final color print on top of the practice print and trace over your lettering once again.
5. Add finishing details with a thin black pen and then hang up with your dry binder clips.
Go ahead and get two engineer prints at your local printer. We got one in full color for the final piece, and a black and white version for planning your layout. Pro tip: These are significantly cheaper than color prints, so perfect for practicing.
Before we get started on the print itself, let’s transform these plain plastic binder clips into trendy copper ones. Tape over the wire parts and spray a couple coats of paint on each side. Let these dry while you create your art piece!
Tape down your black and white practice print and start lettering a few versions of your word or phrase on some scrap paper. Nervous about this step? Check out our Hand Lettering online class and build up those brush marker lettering skills!
When you’re ready, pencil in your lettering onto your black and white print and fill it in with marker, thickening up your lines until you are happy with it.
Layer your final color print on top of your practice print and trace over your lettering with thin and then thick lines.
If you’d like, add some extra thin lines to make your lettering pop a bit more.
Trim your color print so that there is about a quarter-inch of white all the way around it.
Take a look at your new art piece! When your spray-painted binder clips are dry, it’s time to hang this baby up.
No one said a gallery wall couldn’t include your accessories! For a super low-maintenance (and space-efficient) way to decorate a corner of your room, hang up your lettered photo, scarves, hats and a few of your fave pieces of jewelry. Pillows and poufs are optional but highly encouraged!
DIY Production and Styling: Lee Schellenberger
Getting the word out about your brand takes time, drive, and ingenuity. And it doesn't come easy for many entrepreneurs. As part of our collaboration with Office Depot, we're chatting with Selfmade alum Taylor Morgan McPherson, founder of Sustainable Sparkle Bar, about ways in which she scored press as a solo startup brand and what she learned from Selfmade to take her brand marketing up a notch.
B + C: How did you know Sustainable Sparkle Bar was your business to start?
Glitter has always been my thing, so when I started my event company I decided to make it my niche. I started telling people I threw glitter-themed parties where people would get sparkled with glitter body art and makeup. Six months after that I applied to my first festival and to work with SUR restaurant in West Hollywood.
B + C: What's one strategy that's helped you start your business?
I honestly can't say that I've had a specific strategy that I've followed when it comes to getting my business off the ground. I have a PR background so I was just constantly pitching new business and posting on social media.
B + C: What's the biggest challenge you face as a small business owner?
I would say creating a stable income and revenue stream. With a seasonal, event-based business it can be very up and down.
B + C: What was your most valuable takeaway from Selfmade?
The relationships I made and the push to start an email database.
B + C: How do you stay motivated?
I love what I do and I believe in myself 100%. Staying motivated isn't the hard part. Pushing myself to do the work and staying accountable is the hard part.
B + C: What's your best organizational tip? Do you use any apps that help you manage your business?
I keep multiple to-do lists, hand-written and digital. I also tell clients and partners that I will have something to them by a certain time or day so I have to stick to it.
B + C: What's one piece of advice you would give to female entrepreneurs on the brink of starting?
Just do it, take the leap. And don't worry about what anyone else says to thinks.
B + C: Who inspires you in the entrepreneurial space?
Issa Rae, I'm so inspired by everything that she's created being a creative and a black woman. It's my dream to have my own show one day based on my life and where I give advice and talk about the world. She's doing it and making people laugh and giving people joy. And it's based in LA. Watching Insecure only further cemented my dreams of wanting to live in LA.
B + C: How did you hear about the Office Depot scholarship?
One of my friends that I met through Camp No Counselors saw an IG ad for it and nominated me.
B + C: What has receiving the scholarship to Selfmade done to help you start/grow your business?
It's completely helped me level up and take my business to another level. Selfmade helped me host my first virtual event and taught me how to set up my website to sell tickets to events and get RSVPs.
B + C: How have Office Depot services or products helped you accomplish more in your business?
I got new cards to send in all of my orders with my discount code on them. I also bought a really cool 4K camera that I now use for my social media.
Let Office Depot OfficeMax help you stand out in the crowd. From signs, posters & banners to promote your business, to marketing materials to keep your customers informed, Office Depot OfficeMax offers a full suite of business services & solutions to help you & your business get noticed.
Head to Office Depot's Selfmade page to check out even more amazing business resources (and discounts!) to help you accomplish more on your entrepreneurial journey. These offers are available for a limited time only, so be sure to take advantage of all this goodness while supplies last. Want to join the next Selfmade cohort this summer? Check out all of the scholarship details right here.