Before starting the ideas listed below
its a good idea to read these general hints and tips.


You can use many types of paper for art work and projects:-
drawing paper, old wallpaper, brown paper, paper bags, tissue, crepe and
wrapping paper.Large sheets of art paper tend to be expensive, instead
buy sugar paper, the cheapest type of paper sold in art shops,
or why not consider buying a roll of wall lining paper.
 You can cut off lengths the exact size you
want and it is fairly inexpensive for large projects.


For heavy cardboard use pieces of grocery boxes.
where light card is required use the card
from packaging, as in new shirts, a cake box or cereal packets.

To make it white card, you can stick white paper to it and let it dry.


Use greaseproof paper.


You will need:

A piece of greaseproof paper and a pencil.

What to do:

Lay the piece of greaseproof paper over the picture
you want to trace.  You can hold it in place with bluetac
if you like, or small pieces of masking tape.  Now carefully
draw over all the lines through the paper.  When you've finished
lift up the greaseproof paper and turn it over.  Now using a soft
pencil 2B,3B or 4B, scribble over the lines.  Turn the page back
and position it onto whatever you want to transfer the image to.
 Hold again, or stick as before, and careful go over all the
lines again .  When you've done that the image should be transferred.


You will need:

A ruler, pencil and paper

What to do:

Using the ruler and pencil, draw very light lines over the picture you want
to enlarge 1 cm apart.  Draw another row of lines across the
first lot also 1cm apart so you now have a grid of squares.

On the paper you want to enlarge your picture to, draw another
grid of squares, but this time make them larger say 2cm (for double the size)
3 cm(3 times), 4cm etc

Now carefully following the small picture, copy the contents of each
square into the larger square.  Take your time and use the
squares as a guide, you should manage to make a larger copy.


It is best to use poster paints or powder paints mixed with water.

Wash brushes well in cold water after use.

Always work on old newspapers to avoid mess.


Sprinkle sand or dry coffee grounds into wet paint and leave to dry.


Mix a small amount of egg yolk and powdered detergent
to food colouring in a mixing dish. Use on tinfoil, plastic etc.


Adult help required

Keep finger paints in screw top jars. To use them pour them out into
larger plastic food tubs, tinfoil frozen meal trays or the containers pies come in.


You will need:

A bottle of  liquid starch, some
small jars and food colouring.

What to do:

Pour a little starch into the jars and mix in a little food colouring.
Use it on smooth surfaces.  If you want to use it on paper, use it on WET paper and let it dry.


You will need:

Soap flakes (not detergent), cold water starch and
water, a bowl to mix in and jars to keep it in.

What to do:

Mix together ½ cup of soap flakes,½ cup of coldwater starch and ¾ cup of
cold water in the bowl. Put a little in each jar and colour it with food colouring, powderpaint or a little poster colour.


Make some thick flour and water paste (see below under glue) and add food colouring, powder paint or poster paint.


It is good to have separate jars for each colour. You can
use yogurt pots or larger margarine tubs to pour it into and work from.
Plastic egg boxes are good for mixing colours in.


Try using a feather, strip of card, baby cotton bud, or a piece of
cotton fabric wrapped around a cocktail stick, toothpick or pencil, to paint with.

Use cotton-wool, fabric, or a piece of sponge
dipped in paint to make nice patterns dabbing.

Cut teeth into a piece of card and use to "comb" through finger paint.


Use rubber solution glue. PVA or flour and water paste.

Always work on newspapers to avoid mess.


Adult help required

You will need:

Plain flour, boiling water, cold water,
salt ,measuring jug, small bowl and a spoon.

What to do:

Measure ½  cup of flour into the bowl. Add ¼ cup of cold water and
mix with the spoon until it is a smooth paste. Pour on 1 cup of boiling
water (get an adult to do this) and mix till smooth and it takes on a
transparent look. Strain through a sieve if necessary. Add a
pinch of salt and top up with cold water until it is the required consistency.

This paste will keep in the fridge for 2-3 days.

It is suitable for paper, foil, light fabrics, card etc.


Adult help required

Below are two recipes. The first will stay soft and pliable
for a long time if kept in the fridge wrapped in plastic.

The second recipe is for making things to be baked and kept.


You will need:

1 cup of plain flour,½  cup of salt, 2 teaspoons
of cream of tartar, 1 cup of water.

What to do:

Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a pan and cook all the ingredients for 3 minutes
stirring constantly. Drop the dough onto waxed paper and allow
to cool. Knead well. Separate into 2 or 3 portions and colour with food colouring. Keep in jam jars.


You will need:

1 cup plain flour,½  cup salt and 6-8 tablespoons water.

What to do:

Mix the flour and salt in a bowl.  Add the water 1 tablespoonful
at a time and use only enough to make a pliable dough.  Roll out
to ½ -1 cm thick and cut it , or mould it into models with hands .
 This dough can be baked hard at 400F/Gas6/200C
and painted when cool.  Varnish will help protect the paint.


Straw blowing

You need:

Paper, paint, brushes, water and a straw.

What to do:

Drop a few blobs of paint onto paper and use a straw to blow the paint into pretty patterns.

Butterfly painting

You will need:

Paper, paint, brushes water.

What to do:

Start by folding a piece of paper in half, then open it out again.  Paint a pattern on only one side of the piece of paper, up to the fold.Don't skimp on paint.  Then carefully refold the paper and gently use your fingers to rub over the page.  Open the paper again to find the pattern has printed itself on the other side of the paper too.

Bubble printing

You will need:

Paper, thin paint, pot, washing up liquid, a straw.

What to do:

Put the thin paint into a pot (use water if necessary to thin the paint down).  Add some washing up liquid.  Now use the straw to blow into the pot and make bubbles.  When you have a frothy surface gently lay a piece of paper on the top to take a print of the bubbles.

You can repeat with other colours in different pots.

Spaghetti print

You will need:

Paper, paint, water,some cooked spaghetti (a plateful)

Use cold spaghetti for this( you can run cold water through fresh cooked spaghetti to cool it)

What to do:

On the plate of cold spaghetti use a paintbrush and add some blobs of colour to the pasta.  Make sure it is fairly well all covered with some paint.  Gently press a piece of paper over the top and you will get a print of the pasta.

Marble painting

You will need:

Paper, paints, box,marbles

What to do:

Put a piece of paper in the bottom of the box.  Dip a marble in paint and drop it in the box.  Move the box around so that the marble leaves trails of paint on the paper.  You can take the marble out and try other colours too.

Toy car painting

You will need:

paper, paint, toy car.

What to do:

Dip the cars wheels into a saucer of paint and run on the paper to make patterns.

Doilie stencils

You will need:

Paper, paint, doilie, masking tape(optional)

what to do:

Attach the doilie to the paper using tiny pieces of masking tape.  this stops it slipping when you paint.  Now carefully dab paint over the doilie.  Peel away the doilie and you should have a pretty pattern left.

Alternatively cut your own pattern.  First cut a circle of paper.  Fold it in half, then half again before cutting out some holes.  Open it out and use as above.

String painting

What you need:

Paper, paint, string.

What to do:

Fold the paper in half and open out.  Dip the string in the paint.  Lay the string on one side of the paper, up to the fold, with both ends sticking out over the bottom edge.  Close the paper again.  Rub the paper so that you "print" the string.  Then holding the paper closed with one hand, take both ends of the string in the other and gently pull it out.  this should also leave a pretty pattern.

Wax resist

You will need:

Paper, paints, brushes, water, coloured crayons or a piece of white candle.

What to do:

Draw a pattern or picture on the paper with the crayons or candle.  (If using candle the pattern will be invisible)

Then paint over the top to reveal lovely patterns.

You could also try using the crayons or candle to do a rubbing first- try thin paper over a leaf and gently rub wax over it.  Painting afterwards will make the pattern more obvious.


You will need:

Paper, paint and things to print.

What to do:

You can print using all sorts of things.  Put the paint into shallow saucers and carefully dip the item to be printed in  it, or use a brush and paint the surface, before pressing onto paper.

Things to print:

natural things:- leaves, feathers, fruit and vegetables cut in half- apples, pears, peppers and of course potato.  Patterns can be cut into potato to print.

kitchen things:- cookie and sweet cutters, clothes pegs.

body parts:- hands, feet fingers

Other stuff:- buttons, keys,nails

sponges are great and if you can get hold of cheap ones, they can be cut into shapes first.

See also spaghetti printing and bubble printing.

Printing from Plastic

What you need:

paper, paint, brushes, water, PVA adhesive, polythene

What to do:

Mix the paint with PVA adhesive and paint a thick layer onto a piece of polythene (use an old plastic bag)

Scrape away patterns of pictures with a piece of card.  Take a print by laying a piece of paper onto the plastic and pressing gently all over.

Clean the plastic with a small amount of washing up liquid, but try taking a print of this too as you can make lovely swirls with it.

Scraper Picture

You will need:

Paper, coloured crayons, black crayon and an old biro or knitting needle.

What to do:

Colour over the paper in bright patches of coloured crayon.  When it is totally covered, cover over the lot with a thick layer of black crayon.  

Now scratch into the surface with the old biro to reveal the colours underneath.

Try pictures of fireworks or a starry sky.  Very effective.


Collage is the art of gluing items on paper or card to make a picture.  Use PVA glue or flour and water paste( the recipe is above)

For young children put dabs of glue directly on the paper or card.  Older children can use a brush to apply the glue to the items.

Ideas for pictures

tissue paper- cut or torn pieces glued onto paper, the colours will overlap and create other colours.

Magazine pictures or torn scraps

egg shells- broken pieces can look very effective and can be painted when dry.  Prepare shells by washing and drying first.  Let dry totally before trying to stick down.

Dry ingredients- Use dried beans, split peas, pasta, rice, coffee beans.

String and wool-  string can be dipped into paint mixed with PVA glue and it will stick to paper or card when laid down and left to dry.

Dried leaves- Pick up autumn leaves or press your own between layers of newspaper under heavy books.

Pressed flowers- press as above


wool, fabric, plastic, bits of felt, bottle tops, milk bottle tops, corks, shells, pieces of foam packing, seeds, beads, pipe cleaners, the ideas are endless.

Melon seeds can be washed and dried gently in the oven, then glued down  they can also be strung with needle and thread for great jewellery.

Stained glass picture

You will need;

Black paper, scissors, glue and coloured tissue paper.

What to do;

Begin by working out a simple picture leaving boarders around each area of colour.  Cut out the shapes, rather like a stencil.  Now cut pieces of coloured tissue to cover the individual holes and glue them to the boarders on the back.  On the front this should make "windows" of colour.

when you've finished your picture will look good if hung up in a window.

Terrific for Christmas designs.

Hi. I hope you enjoy my art page and the ideas I've included.
If you find any mistakes
please E-mail me.  Thanks.


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