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Nature Drawing for Kids: How to Make Feather Art in a Box

by Samara Caughey
May 21, 2021

Feathers provide a great nature-based opportunity for kids to notice patterns, shapes & lines. Help kids make their own feather art in a lovely DIY shadow box in this easy nature drawing activity by Samara Caughey of Purple Twig.

Colorful oil pastel & watercolor painting of feathers – nature drawing ideas for kids

I’m always on the look out for projects using little boxes. Children respond with glee to the idea of something special inside of boxes.

It might be a bug, a special collection of one thing or another, a found treasure or a little world.

This nature drawing project combines two of my loves – small boxes and feathers.

Drawing feathers is a fantastic exercise in observation of patterns and is an easy nature drawing activity for kids.

I have been collecting feathers for quite a few years, mostly on our family camping trips.

Easy nature drawing ideas for kids – artwork hanging in frames on the wall along with flowers & feather for observational drawing

I have found pelican feathers, vulture feathers, blue jay feathers and even wild turkey feathers, which are my favorite. You can also buy feathers at craft stores or find them online.

feather art in a box 2 pinterest

Nature Drawing for Kids

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  1. Observe the shapes, lines and patterns of the feathers

    Lay the feathers out on the table and have children to observe the feathers. Encourage them to notice the outside shape, the patterns on the vane of the feathers and the way the barbs may separate.  

    Group of student with paper & oil pastels observing feathers on table – easy nature drawing ideas for kids

  2. Draw feathers

    Have students draw at least three feathers on their watercolor paper using an oil pastel. Be sure to ask them to keep in mind that the feathers need to fit inside of the box.

    Student holding oil pastel drawing feather on paper with feathers laying on table in this easy nature drawing idea for kids

  3. Paint feathers with watercolors

    When they’re finished drawing, put out the liquid watercolor and brushes.

    Student painting feathers with a brush in this easy nature art project

    I typically don’t give students directions for this part. I just let them explore the watercolor and how they might want to use it.

    Feather drawing & liquid watercolor & brush in cup in this easy nature drawing and painting activity

  4. Cut & glue feather art

    When dry, have the kids cut out the feathers and glue them into the box.

    Hand holding box containing hand drawn feathers in it – an easy nature drawing activity for kids

    I also offer a feather to add to the box if they’d like it.

    Nature drawing – hand holding pink feathers & box with cut out painted feathers in it

I hope you enjoy this easy nature drawing activity!

Nature Drawing for kids – Four feathers drawn on paper with bird feathers laying on table

More Nature Drawing Ideas for Kids:

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feather art in a box pinterest

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10 Best Kids Art Ideas
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