Marquee Lights

CLE IIEverywhere I look lately, I see initials or those fabulous marquee lights. And each time I see them, I won’t lie to you: I long to have a set in my home. But, in typical fashion I don’t want what everyone else has. And I didn’t know what words or letters I wanted to have.

And then it hit me. Why not ‘C-L-E’ since I am doing this special on M of Hearts about all things Cleveland related?

To really mix it up, while I love the solid colors of the letters and marquee lights that I see, I really wanted to do something unique.

I love photographs. If you come into my rental, I have a wall collage covered in framed photos. There is literally a frame in every room and on most pieces of furniture. I love capturing memories and am taken back to good times. To say I am sentimental would not be false.

I got to thinking: How cool would it be to make a photo collage inside of the marquee lights? When you look inside the letters, it becomes this whole other story. Not a solid color. Not blank, but a story. And the lights will essentially light up the city. I just had to make this happen!

I got help from Brit + Co.  They walked me through how to cut out my letters and which lights work best. When it came to the spray-painting part, instead of spray paint, this is where the photos came into play. When I decided on using photos inside of my letters, I knew immediately who I wanted to ask to collaborate with me on this project, and I reached out to one of my favorite photographers for help.

One of my favorite photographers is George. He has an eye for what many pass by on a daily basis in life and he captures these images with ease; a bartender mixing drinks, beauty within destruction and especially nature in every element. The things that people ofter take for granted, he celebrates their beauty and shares his images with others.

Trust me- you will never look at a flower the same way again after seeing one of his photographs of flowers. If I may be so bold as to say this, his flora photos are more beautiful than the flowers themselves. Once I obtain my dream home, I picture a wall covered in his photos of flowers to represent always having flowers present in my home. And naturally I picture several throw pillows covered in said photos. To say these images are stunning is an understatement and I urge you to check out his collection. They are so vibrant in color and show the depths of beauty within an object so fragile.

I reached out to George and he sent me several of his photographs from Cleveland, Ohio. They include famous landmarks and various scenes from in and around the city.

Photos III

This photo of his photos do not give him justice. You have to see these in person. My favorite is his image of the Terminal Tower through Tower City Center.

Using George’s images of Cleveland, I printed a variety of sizes using PostalPix. I created a collage and cut the photos to get them to cover the inside of each letter completely. Once they were dry, I added the bulbs.

I am not one to brag about myself, but when I plugged the lights in, I gasped. It was literally like I had the city in my apartment. The lights highlighted the beauty that resides in Cleveland. They turned out better than I had imagined.


Because I am my own worst critic, I do have notes for when I make these again. The glue that would work better and perhaps printing the photos on something with an easier ‘bend’ than the prints I had ordered. However, I am excited with the end result.

And everything is represented: The Terminal Tower, the West Side Market, the sax man, Cleveland sports teams and famous landmarks. It’s all of Cleveland on Cleveland.

I am excited to make these for other cities. I can even picture this being on my wall as a centerpiece with surrounding frames featuring additional photos from that particular city around it. The options are endless and I keep thinking of fun ways to display this.

What is your favorite view of Cleveland?







3 thoughts on “Marquee Lights

  1. Pingback: Marquee Lights with Photo Prints DIY from M of Hearts - PostalPix blog

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