The display case mounted onto the Wall of Fame at Zane Middle School

Abstract[edit | edit source]

The purpose of this project was to create a display case to be mounted on a wall in the main office of Zane Middle School to hold picture frames of the faculty. The display case was designed to look professional and aesthetically pleasing. The Framed Four was united by the Engineering 215 - Intro to Design class at Cal Poly Humboldt Spring Semester 2019. We worked with clients Trevor Hammons, Teresa Pambianco, as well as office staff members Erin Barres, June Bricco, and Danielle Muniz, to bring this project together.

Background[edit | edit source]

Cal Poly Humboldt's Engineering 215 Spring Semester 2019 - Intro to Design class has been partnering with Zane Middle School for a few years now. Zane identifies problems around their campus and engineering students fix these problems throughout the semester. The Framed Four was given the Hall of Fame in the main office at Zane. On this Hall of Fame wall there are 53 pictures of Zane faculty were displayed in 5x7 nonidentical picture frames. These frames were hung directly onto the wall by inconsistent nails (and sometimes thumbtacks) that presented them in a crooked and disfigured way. The wall as a whole looked sloppy and unprofessional. Our job was to revamp this wall, and display the faculty pictures, as well as the school, in a more professional and creative way.

Problem Statement and Criteria[edit | edit source]

The objective of this project is to redesign the wall of staff pictures at Zane Middle School which currently has mismatched picture frames. Some of the requirements for this is it must be safe, sturdy, updatable every year, and include the awards and principal's picture.

Criteria Importance Constraints
Safety 10 Must comply with safety constraints set out by client. Must not have sharp edges and must be earthquake proof.
Aesthetics 9 The way the project looks is must appeal to the faculty, parents, children, and client and should have some aspects of organization.
Accessibility 9 The project must have pictures that can be easily replaced and updated.
Durability 7 The project should be very stable and safely attached to the wall, so as not to fall. It should also be built to last 7-10 years.
Cost 6 Must have a total cost under a $400.00 limit.

Description Of Final Project[edit | edit source]

Figure 1: The Mounted Display Case

The display case, shown in Figure 1, is made of two CDX plywood sheets that are each 7x4 feet. The borders are made of 2x4 in wood planks that are 4x14 feet. The plywood and 2x4s are attached to each other to house 56 pictures, in frames, of the Zane faculty. A hole was cut in the plywood sheet to fit the fire alarm that is located in the middle of the wall. The display case is painted black and then splatter painted with the school colors, red and yellow. This adds an aesthetic aspect to the display case. The frame was mounted on the wall by drilling through the back of the plywood and into the studs behind the wall at multiple intervals along the length to make it durable and earthquake proof.

Figure 2: The Picture Frames

There is a total of 56 picture frames inside the display case, organized in four rows of fourteen. In each row the picture frames rotate between landscape and portrait orientations to create more space and variety. The backing was removed from each picture frame to highlight the splatter paint behind the frames. These frames are 8x10 inches and have a silver and black border, shown in Figure 2. The pictures inside the frames are 5x7 inches and are centered in each frame. The frames are hung up with small nails that are attached to the plywood backing. Above the display case, there is a single row of four picture frames. In these frames lie the principal, and three administrators. This adds to a total of 60 8x10 inch picture frames on the Hall of Fame wall. On each top corner of the wall, there are two awards that Zane has been given in the past.

Figure 3: The Wings

Above the display case, there are two falcon wings located on either side of the principal and administrator's pictures. These wings were made with feathers that Teresa Pambianco's art students painted using Zane's school colors. The feathers are 4 inches tall and 2 inches wide. The feathers are attached to a cardboard cut out that is 15 inches tall and 35 inches wide. The feathers overlap each other to give a realistic look to the falcon wings. The falcon wings are shown in Figure 3.

Prototyping[edit | edit source]

Below is a table showcasing how the team did prototyping for this design.


Prototyping for function
The first set of prototypes created were built to function as the final design would. This was accomplished by gathering wood scraps and constructing a rectangular frame that would be proportionally equivalent to the larger frame. Cardboard was cut into the shape of 8x10 inch “picture frames." From this process, it was discovered that a back wall made of plywood sheet would be convenient and would be better aesthetically. It was also discovered that the width of the wood must be taken into account when measuring the exact dimensions of the large frame.
Prototype for desire
The second prototype were chosen to resemble the aesthetic design that the client, Trevor Hammons, desired. This prototype was already made by the school and is currently hanging in the office of Zane Middle School. The team examined this and strategized different colors that could be used to match the project better.

Costs[edit | edit source]

The cost of construction for the Hall of Fame Redesign is summarized in the table below. This accounts for all the materials implemented in the design and all the materials used to build the design.

Materials Quantity Cost
Picture Frames 60 $99.02
Paint Rollers 20 $3.50
Paint Brush 1 $4.25
White Mistint Paint 1 $1.99
Yellow Mistint Paint 1 $4.99
Red Paint 1 $13.99
Black Paint 1 $31.99
Wood Boring Bit 1 $4.99
Jigsaw Blade 1 $2.59
Sandpaper 1 $2.39
Drywall Screws 40 $3.79
Hardware Screws 30 $8.10
2x4 Wood Plank 8 Donated
7x4 Plywood Sheet 2 Donated
TOTAL $181.59

Costs (Hours)[edit | edit source]

The picture below illustrates a pie chart of the total design costs in terms of hours for the design.

FramedFour Final Hours.png

Testing Results[edit | edit source]

The results of our final design show that the frames used were initially very fragile, and placing them on the design with no backing leads to further lose of integrity when being handled. With just glass and the main skeletal frame, of the picture frame the frames looked aesthetically pleasing, but could come loose or break easily. The testing proved that there may be a need for sturdier frames, and in the mean-time adjustments to explain how to carefully place them on the design.

Another issue that arose was the necessity for the frames to be perfectly straight, to have it stand out as a better design from the original Hall of Fame wall. When first put up, the frames had holes in the top center so to be hung on nails on the display case. These holes however in our design were unique and not centered perfectly, so frames tended to slide or tilt sideways. To fix this, Velcro circles have been placed, to ensure the frames (as well as the staff pictures) on the wall are all secured in place and straightened. This eliminates tilting and gives the project the needed professional look, making sure it isn't mismatched and uneven.

How To Build[edit | edit source]

The following table is a set of step by step instructions to show how to build a display case to house pictures

How to build a display case to house pictures:

Cutting the Wood
Cut wood boards and plywood into desired dimensions
Drilling the Wood
Screw the Wood together into a rectangular shape with plywood backing.
Painting the Wood
Paint the display case one color
Splatter Painting the Wood
Splatter different colors of paint to create an aesthetic look.
Hanging the Case on the Wall
Hang the display case on the wall by drilling through the plywood and into the studs in the wall.
Hanging the picture frames
Hang the pictures on the plywood using nails and Velcro to center each frame.

Maintenance[edit | edit source]

Maintenance of the display case and the picture frames is important for keeping them looking professional and at their best.

Schedule[edit | edit source]


Minimal maintenance will be required during the school year. The display case and frames are black, so dust will be more visible when it settles over time. Regular dusting of the display case is appropriate for this situation.


The picture frames should last two to five years, given they are handled carefully and mindfully when taken off the display case. The pictures themselves will be replaced each school year to keep the faculty up to date.

Long Term

The display case should not need much maintenance, but if the paint begins to fade over the years, fresh paint will help it look its best.

Instructions[edit | edit source]

How to Maintain the Hall of Fame:

Backpack frame bike trailer
Detach old picture frame from the Velcro. Obtain new picture frame and attach Velcro tape to bottom center of frame and drill a small hole into the top center of the frame for the nail. Replace new frame into its designated nail on the display case.
Display case being splattered
Take picture frames and picture off of display case. Unscrew display case from the wall and bring it outside to a flat surface. Paint a couple layers of black paint onto display case and wait for it to dry completely. Splatter-paint the display case with red and yellow paint. Once all the paint is dry, re-mount the display case onto the wall and put the frames and pictures back on the nails and Velcro.

Troubleshooting[edit | edit source]

This is how to troubleshoot basic operation. For complex issues contact the custodial staff or the Eureka School District Carpenter shop.

Problem Suggestion
Picture frame is sideways or not straight Make sure it has a Velcro circle placed on both the picture frame and the display case to ensure a locked position. If missing replace the missing piece
Faculty photo inside the picture frame is sideways Adjust and straighten it by removing it and re-centering/positioning it straight within the frame using the Velcro circles
Picture frame falls apart Buy identical frame and drill hole in the top (depending on portrait or landscape orientation) and replace on wall. Additionally, add the two Velcro circles on the board and frame
Velcro loses grip or is too old to function Buy rolls of Velcro circles, and replace in the location of old Velcro
Nails come loose Buy small picture frame hanging nails, and gently hammer into the same hole (or new location on the board as close to original nail hole as possible)

Discussion and Next Steps[edit | edit source]

The finished Hall of Fame Wall is a sturdy display case that will serve its purpose while also providing a pop of color and intrigue to the Main Office of Zane Middle School. The Framed Four were excited with the overall product of the Hall of Fame wall and were happy to be able to participate in redesigning the office at Zane Middle School. We hope the display case can influence others to construct similar designs that can further portray how important the teaching staff is in their communities. The next steps of this project are to repaint the main portion of the display case when the paint fades in 7-10 years. Another important next step is to purchase more durable frames for the photos so as to not have to be replaced as often and to withstand the wear and tear of being handled.

Suggestions For Future Changes[edit | edit source]

  • When buying wood,
    • look for pieces with minimal defects (scratches,splitting, or holes)
  • When buying picture frames,
    • purchase 5x7 frames
    • buy in bulk from places that ensure long lasting quality
  • Take the dimensions of everything multiple times and have others double check as well

Poster[edit | edit source]

Below is a picture of the final poster for the Framed Four's design.

Final Design Poster

Video[edit | edit source]

Page data
Authors Andrew Kizer, Alex Halter, Grace Johnson, Anissa Stull
Published 2019
License CC-BY-SA-4.0
Impact Number of views to this page. Updated once a month. Views by admins and bots are not counted. Multiple views during the same session are counted as one. 335