Foam Board Mounting 101: What Is Foam Core Mounting?

by Sean McCafferty on September 12, 2022
Foam Core Mounting

Educators, art school students, photographers, marketing teams and picture framers have all needed foam core mounting at one time or another. Even if you haven't had to do any foam board mounting yourself, you've certainly come across versatile foam core boards in your daily life.

If it's your turn for mounting pictures onto foam boards, this mini-tutorial can point you in the right direction. We'll talk about the many uses for foam core mounting boards and how to adhere photos, artwork and other items onto foam core. Once you see how easy foam board mounting can be, feel free to browse our wide selection of foam board solutions to find the right material for your needs.

What Is Foam Core Mounting?

Foam core (also known as foam board or gator board) is an inexpensive, lightweight material composed of three layers. The two outer layers of paper sandwich an inner layer of polystyrene foam clad. Regular foam board comes in either black or white. When you mount photo prints, a canvas, poster or other materials to foam board, you give them a solid backing. This enables you to present your ideas to others professionally or frame your favorite picture without it looking wrinkled.

The Tools You Need for Foam Board Mounting

If you've decided you'll be mounting pictures on foam board yourself, there are a few tools you'll need for the task:

  • Sharp knife for cutting the foam board: An X-ACTO knife or other utility knife works well. You can also purchase cutters specially designed to use on foam boards.
  • Adhesive: You can either buy a can of spray adhesive or purchase foam board that has an adhesive peel-off layer.
  • Straight edge: A T-square or ruler will help you accurately measure and ensure straight cuts.
  • Roller: This is optional but handy. A roller helps to remove any air bubbles and gives your artwork a smooth surface.

If you plan on doing a lot of foam board mounting, you may want to invest in special foam board tools and supplies.

Steps for Mounting Pictures on Foam Board

Foam board photo mounting is pretty straightforward if you follow a few simple steps.

  1. Before you start mounting photographic prints onto the foam board, arrange them in an eye-appealing fashion until you're happy with the effect. You can vary their vertical and horizontal placement, so they don't look like soldiers, make a pattern out of them or create a collage with captions.
  2. Take a photo so you can keep track of what goes where in your layout. Do this in case the board is disturbed before everything is glued down.
  3. Shake up the can of adhesive and lightly spray the back of your photo.
  4. Place your photo in position on your foam board.
  5. If you're adding captions, you can print them out on labels to make your life easier. Then just peel and stick them beneath each photo.

Using Adhesive Foam Mounting Board for Artwork

Hanging artwork requires the use of foam core to prevent it from slouching. This is a case where a self-adhesive foam board comes in handy. Once you've cut the foam board to the proper size, peel off just the top edge of the adhesive backing.

Place the top of your artwork to align with the top edge and press down gently.

Continue to peel away the backing, adhering your material to the foam core and smoothing it down as you go along to ensure you don't get any bubbles under the surface.

Be patient and take your time when you use this technique – imagine how happy you'll be when you see your finished artwork on the wall!

Other Uses for Foam Board

Foam core mounting is one of the leading foam board solutions for educators, students and others – but it's not the only one. Foam board is a mainstay for photographers who use it as a backdrop for photo shoots and to achieve standout lighting effects. And architects use foam core to build models of future projects so clients can get a 3-dimensional view of how their new property will look.

With the increase in online business meetings, many ingenious home office workers have used foam core to create a clean background so other meeting attendees don't see a pile of laundry or other unseemly goings-on behind them. If you're doing a live interview or a podcast, you may want to think about creating a backdrop out of foam board to ensure you maintain a professional vibe.

Printers also use foamboard to produce signs and other materials. You can print artwork directly onto the foam board, which is a great option if you're creating something that will be displayed permanently.

Find the Best Foam Core Mounting Products at

You can create wall art, photo presentations and mounted prints that are knockouts thanks to foam board mounting. From regular black or white foam board to the heavier gator board to adhesive foam board, you'll find the materials and tools you need right here. And a special note to art schools – you can take advantage of wholesale pricing when you buy foam core in bulk at Shop today!

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