How to Make a Fun Interlocking Photo Display!

Extra photos for bloggers:1,2,3

What happens when you combine the idea of building blocks with photo prints?

An unconventional way to show off your pictures — that’s what!

Turn your photos into an awesome and interactive tower o’ pictures that flaunts your photo and construction skills!

Leave it unassembled for friends to put together at a party or see how high you can make it tower.

Cuz who says photos can only be in frames or albums?

Make a Buildable Photo Display!

Photo Frames are so last season

Show up to 24 pictures in this structural display! It’s kinda like Jenga with photos — see how tall you can make yours tower!

It doesn’t take a lot of materials to make it, and you’re free to add on more photos if ya want.

The neatest feature of these discs is that they you can take ‘em apart and store them flat—nothing to store away!

So whatcha waiting for? Let’s start construction!

The Building Materials:

  • 24 photo files
  • Any program that can edit photos
  • Printer or access to a printer
  • Non-glossy cardstock paper (if printing on own printer)
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick

STEP 1: Laying out the foundation

beforeUse a photo-editing program to place 4 circles—at 3.5” in diameter—on a letter-sized document.

Make 6 duplicates of this document layout so that you have a total of 24 circles.

STEP 2: Partner Up

beforePlace a photo in each one of the 24 circles, pairing them horizontally.

These 12 pairs will be the front and back images of 12 photo circles you’ll get at the end.

STEP 3: Mark ‘Em Slots

beforeFor only one of the photo circles in each pair, place ¾”-length line marks equidistantly on 4 sides of the circle—like if you’re marking where north, south, east, and west would be on a compass.

These marks are the guides for the slots you’re going to later cut out.

You can make them any color you want, so long as they stand out a bit from the photo.

If you can set the width of these line marks, make them 1 pt wide.

STEP 4: Print ‘Em Out

beforePrint your photo circles onto cardstock paper (you can get this at any office store), or if you don’t have a printer, get them printed onto cardstock paper at a printing place.

Make sure the paper’s fairly thick and not the glossy kind!

STEP 5: Scissor Action Time

beforeUse scissors to cut out all 24 of the printed photo circles.

Make sure that as you’re cutting out the circles you’re keeping the circles in their pairs so you can glue them together correctly in the next step.

This step is gonna take some time, so put on some good jams to listen to while you’re snipping away.

STEP 6: Stick ‘em with the Glue Stick

beforeUse your glue stick to combine the pairs of photos together, gluing the 2 photo circles in each pair back to back.

If you’re having trouble lining up your photo circle pairs back to back, hold the photos up to a light or a window so you can see through the back of one of the circles to help with lining up the other photo circle.

After you glue your 12 pairs, you can trim away any uneven edges of the combined photo circles with scissors, if you so chose.

STEP 7: Cut the Slots Out

beforeTake your scissors and use the guides you made in Step 2 to cut the slots out of the photo circles.

Notice that the slots you’re cutting out have a tiny bit of width to them.

STEP 8: Slot n’ Lock Check

beforeNow, test the slots to see if they’ll lock the photo circles perpendicularly. This part is important because this is how the photo circles will support each other when you make them into a structure.

If the spot where the photo circles slot n’ lock seems like it’s bunching up, the slots will need to be cut a bit wider, which you can do with some scissors. Do this carefully, though, as too-wide slots will make your photo circles too loose to lock!

STEP 9: Some Assembly Required

beforeIt’s the moment you’ve been waiting for: time to build with your photos!

Once you’re satisfied with your constructed creation, take a step back to admire your sweet, photographic structural masterpiece.

Further Construction Plans

  • Feel free to make more photo circles to add to the 12 you made with this tutorial!
  • Experiment with different shapes for your photos, such as squares or rectangles—like this set by Charles & Ray Eames!
  • Speaking of squares—print out your Instagram photos and use them to build a photo display like we did above!
  • Laminate your photo circles, and ta-da!—they double as cool coasters!
  • Hey parents of young’uns! This photo structure is kid- and travel-friendly—make one with cool and/or educational pictures for the kids!

Photos used in this tutorial were taken by Raoul Ortega. Thanks, dude! Inspiration for this tutorial came from this project by Made by Joel.