3D Concrete Picture Frame

About: Hi, I'm Yaron, A proud father of 2, A software engineer by trade and a creator by DNA. My love for building things started at an early age working with my dad over the summers, now this love fills my free ti...

With the Concrete Class still in my TO DO list and my little knowledge of concrete, I decided to start a simple project which will be manageable to my skills...

All in all, the outcome was to my satisfactory although it was challenging and i had to improvise a bit... ;)

Enjoy

Supplies:

Materials:

  • 4 cups of cement
  • 7 cups small size gravel
  • 4 cups of sand
  • ~2m wood board
  • Nails
  • ~1m glass

Tools:

  • Angle saw + stone disk
  • Trowel
  • Mixing bucket
  • Glass cutter

  • Hammer

  • Clamps

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Step 1: Idea & Design

The general idea was clear, i wanted a picture frame... my considerations were, it should be both a shape that complies my skills and it should be fairly easy to assemble a mold.

I started with a general sketch from my imagination and as i started working on it, i understood it would be too challenging and complicated to achieve, so decided to stay with the plain rectangle frame...

The second thing i wanted was to somehow make it 3 denominational... so i decided to make the frame wide enough so i will be able to use two pictures, a main picture and a background one to give it depth.

Step 2: Concrete Mold

The mold is fairly easy and consists of two wooded frames, the measurements for the frames are 26cm X 17cm (outer frame), 20cm X 11cm (inner frame).

The outer frame: measured and cut 4 wood boards and clamped them together for easier disassembling after the concrete dries.

For the inner frame i had to use nails to keep all 4 boards together, with knowingly it will be harder to disassemble when the mixture is dry...

Step 3: Concrete

Once the mold was ready, i cut two metal rods and bend them to fit in the mold.

Concrete mixture:

  • 4 cups of cement
  • 7 cups of gravel
  • 4 cups of sand

Start mixing them together and add a bit of water each time until you are satisfied with the density (the more dense the concrete mixture is, the more bubbles it will trap within).

Before i Started pouring the mixture to the mold, i watered the wooden frame so it wont absorb the water from the concrete while its drying...

When the concrete was prepared, i poured the first layer (~3cm of concrete) and put the first metal reinforcement and pounded a bit on the frame for the bubbles to come out

Next, I poured the second layer (~4cm) and put the second metal reinforcement and repeated the bubbles extraction process.

The last layer of concrete should cover the metal (~3cm) and again repeated the bubbles extraction process.

Finally, let the mixture dry for at least 48 hours before removing the mold, while every 12-15 hours water the concrete.

Step 4: Glass

Before starting with the glass i had to cut the concrete to enable the slots for the glass, its a bit overhead to cut concrete but i had to improvise as i wanted the frame to be as simple as possible (in retrospective, it would be easier and cleaner to insert a thin wood in the mold for the slots)

I needed 4 equal pieces of glass that will fit the slots on the side of the frame.

I measured and cut the pieces with glass cutter and aluminum ruler, the measures of the glass were 25cm X 11cm (the height of the inner frame and one cm less than length the outer frame).

Once all the pieces were cut, i sanded the edges with a sand paper (followed these instructions).

Step 5: Pictures

The main picture should be an object or person that is not too big relatively to the background picture, and all the background of that photo should be trimmed.

The second background picture can cover all the place, and in order for it to create the depth illusion ii should be a picture that show the depth of the view (not only the horizon).

I choose for the main picture, a photo that i really love of my girls with a balloon from one of the family's event and for the background i looked for some photo that would be in the childish spirit, so i finally decided to take it from a book they liked... I throughout i would be a nice collage mixing the reality and the imaginary..

Each picture lays between two pieces of the pre-cut glass.

Step 6: Done

Since i wanted it to sit on a wooden furniture, i taped floor protector stickers.

I loved the final result, what do you think?

Hope you enjoyed!

Y.

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