Splatter painting in our outdoor studio

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We’ve been taking our art outside more and more lately.

Our backyard is perfect for painting at the easel, splatter painting, chalk drawing, body outlines, and weaving on the garden loom.

But especially for anything messy, such as splatter painting.

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My latest column in the WNC Parent magazine is about taking the art (and the messes) outside and making your backyard your art studio. I also encourage readers to try splatter painting, whether on a big scale with an old sheet, or on a small scale with a piece of paper or blank card.

Splatter painting for kids

MATERIALS

  • Fabric (such as an old sheet), paper, or mat board
  • Acrylic paint (watered down with equal parts water) for permanent art or tempera paint if you want something more washable

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Spread your fabric out on the ground.
  2. Dip your paint brush or spoon into the paint then flick your wrist to splatter the paint across the fabric.
  3. Continue splattering with one or more colors as desired. Experiment with brief wrist flicks or wide wrist flicks. Try splattering close to the fabric or far away. Try circular motions or up and down motions.
  4. Let dry.

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Click here to read my column about Outdoor Art in WNC Parent. You’ll have to enter page 56 in the search field at the top of the page. Then click on the actual page when you get there in order to see it large enough to read.

Have you been doing any art outside lately?

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Comments

  1. says

    LOVE THIS. I know that all children will too.
    I ALWAYS take art outside and teach it outside when possible. What a perfect integration of nature, art, and life you’re sharing with Maia and others.
    All joys to you,
    Sharon Lovejoy Writes from Sunflower House and a Little Green Island

  2. Melissa says

    Cool! My daughter and I made sidewalk chalk paint with crushed chalk and water and we had a blast. We did some Jackson Pollock with the chalk paint too! As my 3 year old was painting she said, “This is Jackson Pollock”. over and over! Too cute!

  3. says

    how funny, jean – this is on my list of art projects to do with novi this week, now that it’s FINALLY warm enough here! i’ve been waiting to make paint splattered messes outside with her for months of rain and dreer. hooray for sun and paint! we’ll be doing ours on canvas… so stay tuned to paintcutpaste.com this week!

  4. Melissa says

    It is difficult to get it totally ground up. I’ve tried hammering it in a bag. Also, kind of creating my own mortar and pestle with the back of a rounded handle (I didn’t want to use my kitchen one for chalk!)It helped to get the chalk a little wet (soak in water for a couple minutes). We’ve made chalk with cornstarch, water, and food color, but it is never very bright in color! With chalk crushed it is so much prettier!

  5. says

    Wow! I knew we had a lot in common. I’m starting a series of backyard art workshops this summer for kids called “Summertime Studio.” Your toddler art group planted the seed for this idea a long time ago, and now it’s going to be a reality and I can’t wait! I set up a blog to post all my workshops and pics from each one here: http://www.summertime-studio.blogspot.com
    I also have a facebook fan page for “Summertime Studio.” Thank you for all your inspiration!

  6. says

    My nephews are coming this weekend and I’ve been attempting to gather fun “BOY” ideas (i.e. the most messiest-get-yourself-dirty projects I can get my hands on) for them to complete while they’re here…this is perfect! Thanks for sharing! And @twolittleseeds, thanks for the “before bedtime and bath” recommendation! :)

  7. says

    Great suggestion! Any mix of paint, balls, and swimming pools just screams their names. I can rest assured that my status as “Cool Aunt” is well-maintained and secure :-)

  8. says

    We were supposed to do splatter painting outside this week for the art playgroup I host, but alas, it rained. Hoping to get to it next week! I’m still debating whether to use sheets or canvas. I can see the advantages to both! I love the way your sheet turned out.