Father's Day Photo Collage Gift | Laguna Lane

Create a DIY Father’s Day Photo Collage

Father’s Day is this Sunday!  Take a look at the Father’s Day inspiration board I created for some DIY and budget-friendly gift ideas.  I had a very hard time deciding, but I chose #8 on that board for this year’s gifts – the “We {heart} you daddy” chalkboard Father’s Day photo collage.  Here’s the example I found on Pinterest (no source but there is a larger Pinterest image).  Cute, right?  I love the personality captured in these shots!

Father's Day Photo Collage Gift Example | Laguna Lane

I’ll walk you step-by-step through how I created my own Father’s Day photo collage.  It’s such a special keepsake with so many possible uses!

Find a Chalkboard Prop

A few months ago, I picked up this matte gray chalkboard on a whim from the Target Dollar Spot for $3.  It was perfect for this project!Father's Day Photo Collage Gift Chalkboard | Laguna Lane

I decided to leave the chalkboard blank and add writing digitally on the computer afterward.  This is a great strategy if you want to use the photo collage for multiple recipients (dad, grandpa, etc.) like I did.

You could use any chalkboard or dry erase board you have around the house.  Another free alternative is to put a blank piece of paper inside a large photo frame and either (1) write on the glass using dry erase marker or (2) add text digitally afterward like I will show you.  No chalkboard purchase necessary!

Take the Photos

I sat the kids on the couch close together with each one holding one side of the chalkboard.  Then I snapped away.  I got them to smile, kiss each other, laugh while looking at each other, stick their tongues out.  Be creative!  Take a ton of shots, and then you can choose the four best ones.  Here’s one of my shots before editing where my daughter is giving my son a kiss.

Father's Day Photo Collage Gift | Laguna Lane

Edit the Photos

Open your top four photos in your favorite photo editing software or use PicMonkey.com (free!).  Crop each image to about the frame, so the kids will be about the same distance away in all four photos.  As you can see, I cropped out extra background in order to have the kids fill up more of the frame.  Be sure to crop close enough in that the sign will be legible on the collage.

Father's Day Photo Collage Gift | Laguna Lane

Make the Collage

I created my collage using PicMonkey using the steps below.

  1. Go to PicMonkey.com and choose the Collage option at the top.
  2. Click “Add Images” and select your four photos.
  3. On the Layouts tab on the left, select “Create Your Own” at the top.
  4. At the bottom of the screen, click the “lock” icon to unlock the dimensions.  For a horizontal 4×6, enter 3000 x 2000.  You could also make a more square collage if you’re going to use it for something like a mousepad.
  5. Drag your first photo on to the collage.
  6. Drag your second photo to the right of the first photo until a blue vertical line appears, and then release.
  7. Drag your third photo under the first photo until a horizontal blue line appears under that photo only, and then release.
  8. Drag your fourth photo under the second photo until a horizontal blue line appears under that photo only, and then release.
  9. Click the Save button at the top, choose the Sean option (highest resolution), and save it to your desktop.  It’s nice to have a copy of the collage at this point in case you want to revert to it in later steps.

Easy, right?!  On the Background tab on the left, you can change the background color (grid lines), the grid line spacing, and the corner rounding if you’d like.

Here’s how my Father’s Day photo collage looked after these steps.

Father's Day Photo Collage Gift | Laguna Lane

Add Finishing Touches & Text to the Collage

While still in PicMonkey, click the “Export to Editor” button at the top of the screen.

  1. If you want to add an effect, this is the time to do it.  Click the “Effects” tab on the left.  I chose the Orton effect, which nicely softens up the photos.  I didn’t want the couch, curtains, etc. to distract from my kids and the chalkboard, and this effect does a nice job of blurring those details.  Another great effect option here is black and white.Father's Day Photo Collage Gift | Laguna Lane
  2. On the “Text” tab, select the “Homemade Apple Pie” font  and click “Add Text.”  The rough edges of this font makes it look like chalk handwriting, which is perfect!  Create a separate text box for each chalkboard, and size each one to make the text as large as possible.  You can also tilt the text box to match the angle of the chalkboard in your photo.
  3. For a heart image, click the “Overlays” tab and choose the “Hearts” category.  Drag the second heart option on to your photo, change both colors 1 & 2 to white, and size and tilt it appropriately.
  4. Click the Save button at the top, choose the Sean option (highest resolution), and save it to your desktop under a different name than above.
  5. If you’re making a collage for different recipients, change the name on the last chalkboard and save the file under a different name.  Repeat until you’ve created all versions needed.

I made two versions for daddy – one with the word “love”…

Father's Day Photo Collage Gift | Laguna Lane

…and one with the heart image.

Father's Day Photo Collage Gift | Laguna Lane

I also created versions for both grandfathers, one of which is below.

Father's Day Photo Collage Gift | Laguna Lane

Present the Father’s Day Photo Collage

You now have a gorgeous and meaningful photo with which you can do anything!  Just framing it would be so special, or you could upload it to Shutterfly, Snapfish, etc. to make a custom photo gift.

For the grandfathers, I created mouse pads on Shutterfly.

Father's Day Photo Collage Gift | Laguna Lane

For my husband, I’m going to make a wooden photo block with the picture.  A post on that is coming soon!

What special photos have you given for Father’s Day?

Father's Day Photo Collage Gift | Laguna Lane

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