Colorful Puddle-Painted Hearts

by Amy on January 16, 2012

My calendar-loving seven-year-old is already counting down the days to Valentine’s Day. I guess she likes to plan ahead! Our first “official” Valentine crafts of the season are these colorful hearts made with puddles of watercolor. Not only is the finished product beautiful, the process is really fun, too!

Supplies for Colorful Puddle-Painted Hearts:

  • Sturdy paper (watercolor paper or card stock)
  • Liquid watercolors or washable tempera diluted with water
  • Droppers, pipettes, or paint brushes

Instructions:

This is a really simple activity, with lots of room for your child’s own ideas about how to do it.

Start by making puddles of paint on your paper heart. We only used 2 or 3 colors on each heart.

Then, holding your paper over a pan, start tipping the paper from side to side to create your paint tracks. The colors will mix as they run into each other, creating a unique design each time.

This activity is definitely an art exploration – your kids can experiment with color mixing, different size paint puddles, and various ways to turn and tip the paper to make paint trails.

A few tips for success:

• Be prepared for a little mess – have a pan or dish tub ready to catch the paint as it rolls off the paper.

• Start with the primary colors (red, blue, yellow). You will get great color-mixing results, and avoid making all your hearts brown. Then, experiment with other color combinations – we tried warm colors, cool colors, and even made some muddy brown creations!

• It can be tricky to pick up the paper loaded with paint puddles, but using sturdy paper will help. We also had good success holding the paper over the pan and dripping our puddles there.

My girls got better and better at controlling the paint and getting it to move in all different directions across the paper. I had to keep cutting out hearts to keep up with them!

These puddle-painted hearts would make lovely Valentines. You could write a message on the back, or glue them to colored paper. I think they would look great taped in a window, or mounted as a group on black paper and framed. Instant bright and happy art for February!

Happy painting!

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