Mosaic Tile Poster Using Slide Mounts




Introduction: Mosaic Tile Poster Using Slide Mounts

Remember the 35mm slides that went into a slide projector to show boring family vacation photos? Amaze and impress the digital generation when you craft this poster, because they won't recognize what the slide holders are actually for! Plus, it's "green" because you're recycling things that would have otherwise gone to the landfill.

If you don't happen to have an old box of slide mounts lying around, look for some in a thrift store. Each 12" x 14" poster consists of 36 slide holders. You'll simply cut a large picture into 36 tiny rectangles, insert each into a slide mount, and then glue them on cardboard in the same order.

Begin by looking through your old wall calendars for good poster candidates. Not only are calendars typically a standard size, but they usually have gorgeous photos you hate to throw away when the year is over. I like flowers, especially if they have a large central focal point.  But you can experiment... even use a real photo if you want.

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Step 1: Gather Your Tools and Materials for the Project.

Materials needed:

1. Piece of cardboard (I'm cutting the sides off this old box).
2. Ruler.
3. Scissors.
4. Permanent marker.
5. Glue.
6. Exacto blade/box cutter.
7. Slide mounts.
8. Calendar page.

Step 2: Get Oriented (or Is It Orientated :-)

Make 7 stacks of 6 slide mounts each, making sure each faces the right way. I orient mine with the 2 dots and sideways brand name on the right. It doesn't matter which way, as long as you're consistent.

Step 3: Unless You Like Living Dangerously, Take Time to Mark Each Tile.

Label the BACK of each slide mount. Start with A6 and go backwards to A1 so they're in the right order to work with. The 7th row is G. (Skip this step if you like taking risks!)

Step 4: Slice the First Row Off Your Photo.

Begin the last row of your calendar photo. Using the ruler as a guide, press down on the bottom portion and carefully cut the first strip with your Exacto blade. (Don't cut the next row just yet.)

Step 5: I Know You Want To, But DON'T Precut Each Rectangle.

The easiest way to work with such small pieces is to insert the strip into the first slide mount, making sure it goes all the way in and is straight before slicing off the rest of the strip. Then just insert the rest of the strip into the next one and cut. Yeah, you lose a tiny bit of the picture but it goes pretty fast that way.

Step 6: Only 35 More to Go!

Continue assembling the 6 tiles of Row G.

Step 7: Lay Out in Rows If You Want to Watch Your Picture Develop.

If you want to be able to see the picture develop row by row as you go, lay them on your cardboard backing or in a box (same thing, in this case). Otherwise, just lay them in a stack.

Step 8: Stack 'em

Make a nice, neat stack face up, beginning with the first of the first row (A1) and ending with the last one in the last row (G6). I like to rubber-band the stack and set it aside so I can do a few more, and then have an assembly-line-style gluing party.

Step 9: Ready, Set, Glue!

Apply glue to the back of each slide mount and lay each down carefully. Make sure each is snug to its neighbors and falling in a straight line. Then all you have to do is cut away any excess cardboard. Let it dry for a few hours.

Step 10: The Beauty of a Dramatic Focal Point.

This was the first tile mosaic I made using slide mounts. You can see that the larger the central focal point, the easier it is to see what it's a picture of... but art is all about fooling the eye, so experiment with different calendar photos. If you lay them out prior to gluing, you'll be able to reject the ones you don't really like and start over with a new photo.

Step 11: Might Have to Duck It!

Now you're ready to frame your work of art as a cool poster for your wall or to give as a gift. Unfortunately the finished 12" x 14" size (actually 1/8" less on each side) doesn't quite fit a  standard 11" x 14" frame, but that's what duct tape is for. :-) (However, if you're going to give it as a gift, you'll want to cover the back with heavy construction paper or something to make it look nicer. And add hardware to hang it from. That said, can you really part with your work of art now that it's so pretty????)

Step 12: Voila!

This one is supposed to be vertical, but I decided I like it better horizontal.

For my next slide-mount mosaic tile project, I think I'll try mounting them in random order.

I'd love to see how your project turns out -- send me a note thru Instructables!

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    2 Discussions


    10 years ago on Introduction

    This is GREAT! I used to use my old slide mounts for name tags when I had big parties, I would glue a pinback to the back and write right on the old slide with a metalic marker. There is so much that can be done with them I guess.