DIY Food Photography Backdrop: Paint Daubing

Updated: Nov 7, 2019


It’s DIY week at my house. And, what am I making myself? More fun food photography backdrops!

This one was inspired by another food photographer, named Bea Lubas, and I had the best time making it.

Here’s how:

I bought a big piece of wood (2 ft by 4 ft) from Home Depot. I’m really terrible about knowing exactly what the names of all the various wood products that Home Depot has are, but, this one passed all my criteria of being a good size, not too heavy, and being very versatile in that I will be able to paint it again and again, if need be.

I also bought some small jars of Behr brand paint, in various shades of blue, and some sponges. They do make special sponges for paint dabbing, but, I just bought regular cleaning sponges, and they worked great.

I started by laying the board on a flat surface that I could easily reach and work on. Then, I got out all the paints, opened them, and stirred them with wooden sticks until they were smooth and consistent. I poured out a small amount (probably about 2-4 Tbsp) of each paint color directly onto the board. This part I did instinctively, there really is no exact amount or formula for how much of each paint to pour. I just took into account that I wanted a lighter color, so, I poured more of the lighter blues and white than the darker colors.

I then started daubing the sponge into the paint colors and dabbing around the board. I ended up adding more white, and just kept adjusting with a little more or less of the colors, till I covered the board and until the color was what I wanted. I didn’t make the paint too thick, but, did allow a little more than a coat just to give the final look a bit of texture.

When I was done, I propped the board with the wet paint up on it’s side overnight and let it dry overnight.

And, then I took a few shots with the board, just to see the outcome.

Perfect! I love how the colors blend together in the photo and how muted the final product it. Perfect!

Next, I plan to do some darker colors to use for the holidays and for fall. I will definitely share the process and results with you guys!

I hope you are able to give these boards a try and have as much fun as I did making them!

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All photos by Allison David

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