Monday, January 27, 2014

DIY Watercolour Valentines

My girls love painting and for what ever reason it's something we haven't done in awhile. Both girls were very excited when I brought the watercolour paints out today.

These beautiful valentines can be made for almost any age. If your child can hold a paintbrush to paint; your child can make these with a little help.

Here's how we made them:

1) Gather your supplies.
-Watercolour paper (we used postcard sized paper and we cut up larger paper into smaller shapes too)
-Watercolour paint (ours is an assortment of treasure hunting at thrift stores)
-A board to tape your papers to
-Tape (masking preferably)
-Frisket masking fluid
-Paint pallet & brushes
-2 cups of water, paper towel and a pencil with eraser
-Table salt optional

2) Cut your watercolour paper to your desired size. Secure to your board with tape. Taping the cards down not only helps them stay in place for little hands but it also stops the cards from curling up when wet. The tape pictured above needs to be moistened with paper towel as shown below (we ran into some difficulty with my tape which you will see later. I would recommend you actually use masking tape instead).

 3) Draw a heart shape somewhere on your paper (or other shape for different holidays or thank you cards as seen HERE where my inspiration for these came from).
 4) Paint the heart with the Frisket Masking Fluid. Set aside to dry (do not use expensive brushes with the masking fluid as it can ruin them. It may clump up and be hard to remove from your brush).
5) When dry, paint over your whole paper with a heavy coat of clean water (you have two cups of water so you can have a clean one just for wetting each paper when you begin a new piece and the other for washing your brush before switching colours).
6) Now using your watercolour paints (tempera watercolour paint blocks will work as well if you do not have water colour paints), paint over your page with as many different colours as you would like. Paint directly over your masked heart.

 7) Optional: You can sprinkle a bit of salt over your wet painting. The salt absorbs some of the paint pigment and leaves crystal like shapes.

8) Repeat with as many papers as you need for valentines. When finished set aside to dry.

10) When your paintings are completely dry, remove the Frisket. To do this rub it firmly but gently to roll it off.

11) Remove your tape. This is where we ran into problems. My tape was over 10 years old. I purchased it for a watercolour course I took for this exact purpose. Apparently it lost it's effectiveness over the years and stuck to the cards so we had to cut the edging off.

On our second batch of cards we used regular masking tape and it worked like a charm. Also the edging left (when the tape cooperates) is a beautiful finish.
Each card is beautiful and very unique. The effect of the watercolours blending is beautiful and the salt gives it a crystallized effect that I love.

Someday I want to take a wet on wet painting and make it into one of these star lanterns. I think they are so beautiful.

Have you tried wet on wet watercolour painting before? If not and you are interested in learning more there are more in depth instructions here.

While we had the paints out Sierra made a dolphin picture for her room. I drew her a dolphin and she did the rest all by herself.

 We hung it up on her rainbow frame wall in her room. All those frames are round or oval so we had to squish the painting in the best we could.

Do you have a favourite water colour project?

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