How to Create a Wall Gallery in 6 Simple Steps

wall gallery

6 Simple Steps to Creating a Wall Gallery (+ Resources)

 

So many of my clients have wishes of creating a wall gallery in their hallway or home. A wall gallery always cozies up and personalizes your home, and helps tell your family’s story. It’s one of the best ways to enjoy the beautiful professional photos you’ve invested in. I know how overwhelming this can feel, so I’ve created this simple checklist and resource page. This mostly applies to creating a gallery with a new set of photos, though you can certainly incorporate existing frames.

 

  1. The frames & photos you select will depend on the size of the wall area that you are working with. So it makes sense to first measure the area.
  2. Browse frame companies & choices (see list below) for ideas. All of the companies in my list below have excellent examples of layouts that you can copy! There are many colors & finishes to choose from; however you can not go wrong with a simple black, brown or white gallery frame.
  3. Select your images based on the number of frames your wall will accommodate. You may want to frame some images alone, or you can mix things up with a pair or a triptych of photos matted together in one frame. This is a little bit of chicken-and-egg and you may play around a bit.
  4. Fine-tune your photo and frame selection. Sometimes it helps to cut the frame shapes out of brown paper (grocery bags work!) and tape them to the wall as placeholders first. If you don’t already have your photos printed, now is the time to place your print order. There are an array of companies that will offer frames as well as printing. The way your photos are printed is critical if you would like them to stand the test of time.
  5. Place your orders and wait for the frames to arrive.
  6. The most rewarding step is next: Displaying your photos! If you’re not comfortable with a level and a hammer, you can hire a professional picture hanger. For assistance with hanging your framed photos, you can hire a local professional who specializes in exactly this.

(The Picture Plays company suggests using taskrabbit.com.  There is a section for “Hanging & Installation” link or craigslist.com and search for a “Handyman”.  Depending on your area, prices will range from $25 to $65 per hour.)

Custom framing: If you are looking for simple & classic black or white wooden gallery frames, I contract with an excellent local art framer that I work with to custom-frame my client’s work.  I offer this service for prints 8”x10” and up. I’m happy to guide you, and I’ll deliver your pieces to you personally. These are very high-quality frames that feature my professional prints, 4-ply mats and museum glass. You can change the prints out later and replace with new prints as time goes by.

 

Full-service printing and framing


If you prefer to go with an online framing company, I can recommend two here that clients have had a positive personal experience with:

Framebridge

https://www.framebridge.com/materials

Framebridge offers full-service printing & archival framing using high quality materials. They feature many beautiful frame options and wall gallery templates. Their website is easy to use and their product ships with clear UV acrylic glass. They are well-established and offer a premium product.

 

Picture Plays

https://pictureplays.com/picture-wall-layouts/

This company, based in California, was launched in 2020 and its founder is the former owner of Photograph + Frame in San Francisco. They also offer an array of beautiful gallery ideas, multiple framing options & high-quality mats. Something that sets them apart is the choice of 3 different types of glasses. I’m a fan of their museum glass, which adds to the price a bit. Their prices are so affordable that you can easily justify the nicer glass. The Picture Plays interface is super user-friendly and they offer several options for combinations of frame groupings. You can also send them photographs that I have printed for you, or that you’ve printed elsewhere. You purchase frames ONLY for an excellent price. Or they will print/mat/frame for you.

If you choose to order from Picture Plays, they have given me a special introductory offer to share with you. Get 10% off your total order with my promo code: JSP10. (This code may be used multiple times.)

 

DIY framing:

If you are a do it yourself-type, Pottery Barn has beautiful frame selections and a helpful guide with nice visuals for how to design a gallery wall:

https://www.potterybarn.com/pages/mirrors-wall-art/how-to-design-a-gallery-wall/?cm_src=OLDLINK&cm_sp=pipbanner-_-default-_-howtogalleryw

 

I love this line of frames in particular that’s currently being offered:

https://www.potterybarn.com/products/wood-gallery-multiple-opening-frames/?cm_src=rel

 

Senior Photos Celebrate 2020 Graduates

Senior photos are a rite of passage and mark a unique time of life! This year, honoring our 2020 graduates has felt even more meaningful. My senior sessions are known for being a fun, uplifting, and relaxed experience. Besides being treasured family keepsakes, your senior can use his/her photos for graduation announcements, applications, social media, sorority rush photos, and whenever a headshot is needed. It is a joyful and hopeful time worth capturing! I encourage other family members to join in the Senior photo sessions too.

     

Shelter-At-Home Photo Fundraising Project for COVID-19 Healthcare

Shelter-at-Home photos/Front Steps Project

Dear Friends & Clients,

April 18th project update: I’m happy to announce that this project exceeded my expectations in every way and has been immensely gratifying. More than 40 families participated, raising over $4000 for MarinHealth. I have decided to pause this project for the time being, but hope to connect with more families in the very near future. 

Here’s my original letter:

We are all doing something big right now. We’ve all committed to keeping our community healthy & safe, which may mean you’re at home with family members spending time together in unexpected ways.

As a photographer, I feel compelled to document this time in some way and, in the meantime, do something useful to support our community. My goal is to bring our community together and support local healthcare needs during this unprecedented time by photographing local families at home together in exchange for your donation to the MarinHealth Foundation, which will benefit Marin General Hospital and help fill critical needs during the COVID-19 crisis & beyond.

Many of us have family members back home together for a very rare moment in time, and I would like to help you capture this togetherness! I will be doing neighborhood walks over the next 2 weeks, and will photograph your family posed on your front porch or front yard (while adhering to strict social distancing).

I would like for our photos to tell a story. You can wear whatever you like, and I encourage you to consider including items that might express how you’ve been spending your time sheltering in place (e.g. baking/playing guitar/painting/building things/a new hobby?) If you have college students at home, perhaps they would like to wear a shirt displaying their college. Include your pets too if you’d like.

My goal is to raise $1500 by April 20th. If you choose to participate, your suggested donation of $50 (or any amount) includes:

  • A 10-minute photo session with Jennifer
  • Jennifer will select the 3 best images for you and email your digital files to you within 48 hours of your session

I will be visiting neighborhoods in Ross, Kentfield, Larkspur, Greenbrae, San Anselmo and San Rafael the first 2 weeks of April.

This project was originally inspired by The Front Steps Project in Needham, MA, which has been featured in USA Today, the NBC Nightly News, and People Magazine for its community front porch photos during the Covid-19 crisis.

2021 Spring Mini-Sessions

I will be offering 3 days of Mini-Sessions this spring: March 12th, 13th & 14th.

These customized, short photo sessions will be held outdoors at a pre-selected Marin County location, in compliance with safe social distancing. Time will allow for a nice mix of individual photos as well as group photos of your family members.

Mini-sessions are 20 minutes long. You will receive a smaller proof gallery, but still a great mix of photos!

Spring Mini-sessions are especially wonderful for: motherhood portraits, capturing baby’s first steps, forcing some hugs on your teenager, or documenting the joy of your kids with a new puppy.

Email me directly at jenskinner@comcast.net to book!

The rate is $375 which includes your choice of (5) fully retouched high-res images. Additional digital images and print products will be available for separate purchase. Three appointments are available each day.

Location and times will be confirmed within the coming days. Please contact me if you would like to be put on my waitlist and which date(s) you prefer.

The session fee will be due at the time of booking. The balance is due 2 days before your session. In the event of rain, this credit can be applied to a future session. I’ll send you specific details & instructions about exactly where to meet once your session is confirmed.

Please check this page for updated info & availability!