DIY Family Art Masterpiece…In the Backyard!

by Laura McPherson | January 29, 2013

When it comes to family fun it’s the more the merrier, but including all family members in the same art project indoors can be difficult. For a fun spring scheme that every member of your family can enjoy, create a super-sized wall mural using play balls as paintbrushes in the backyard! The minimal clean up from taking art supplies outdoors will have you smiling, while the kids will enjoy getting creative (and messy!) with this entertaining project.

What You’ll Need:

  • A large canvas, at least two feet by two feet. Thick canvas works best for this project; you can purchase the material by the foot at craft stores, or online at art supply shops like Utrecht Art Supplies. You can also use the canvas side of a drop cloth purchased at a hardware store.
  • Various colors of paint (preferably acrylic, though tempera will also work) poured out onto plastic plates or disposable containers
  • Permanent markers
  • Textured play balls in assorted sizes
  • "Flair" such as glitter and pom-poms, and appropriate adhesives

blank canvas, canvas roll, art canvas, canvas printing, art project, project materials Canvas can be purchased by the foot or by the roll, although drop cloth from a hardware store also works

 

rainbow of paint, paint buckets, art project, family art project, modern art project, art party You will want plenty of paint for this fun project!
Photo courtesy Ruth Poole on Pinterest.

How to Create a Canvas Masterpiece

1. Kids love color, and this easy to clean up project gives them a great opportunity to experiment. Before setting up outside, let the kids pick several colors of paint to work with. Acrylic sticks best to canvas materials and is more permanent, but tempera will also adhere to most canvases. Since the artists in residence will likely use a large amount of paint, tempera may also be more cost effective.

2. Once your paint colors are picked out, you can pick out the textured play balls for the kids to use as "paintbrushes." While ordinary balls will work, textured balls such as spiky play balls, bubble balls, and basketballs will add depth and have the kids laughing at the interesting patterns they create when thrown against the canvas.

spike ball, vinyl spike ball, tools for art project, do it yourself art project These spikey balls can be found at toy stores or bought in bulk at oriental trading company's website.

3. You should scout a place to hang the canvas in the backyard before beginning. Choose a spot where mis-aimed balls will not spread paint onto houses or fences. Paint can be removed from chain link fences fairly easily when wet, but all painted surfaces should be avoided. You can also consider hanging the canvas on a clothesline between a pair of trees or other tall objects. Try to get the canvas as taught as possible so the balls bounce off a little rather than drag down the whole canvas.

4. Make sure that the kids are appropriately dressed and bring the art supplies outside. It’s time to get creative! If the kids are adding glitter and other adornments to the canvas, have them paint by throwing the balls against the canvas first. This ensures that no ones’ handiwork is painted over, and keeps kids safe from being hit by artwork on the wing.

painted hands, wild child, flower child, creative girl, modern art project, art project, art party Painting can be messy but outdoors, clean up won’t be a problem!
Photo courtesy: imgfave.com

5. When the canvas is complete, have the kids "sign" it by dipping their hands in paint and pressing handprints onto the artwork.

6. Depending on the humidity and amount of paint used, the artwork will take anywhere from a few hours to a day to dry. When it is dry, you can stretch it over a frame for a gallery canvas look.

7. Hang your children’s masterpiece in the craft room or other kid-friendly area of the home! You could create some pretty cool modern art for your whole house with this technique.

Have fun!

Photography, fine art printing and decorating news and advice

Tips-n-Tricks #117

The rule of 3 applies to photos on your wall just as it does with other collections in your house. So when you are creating a multiple photo display think about doing them in multiples of 3.


Turn your walls in to unique works of art