Easy Art For Kids – Marker Paints

October 11, 2011

I saw this idea to make liquid water colour paints at Artopotamus and pinned it to save for ‘one day’. Then ‘one day’ arrived as I cleaned out the art cupboard and was about to throw out all the markers that no longer worked and I suddenly remembered!

I only had a couple of markers in each colour so I wasn’t sure how successful it would be, but I set up a few containers of water and left the markers to soak for a week or so.

easy art for kids marker paint

With one home from school sick today, but not too sick to be ‘bored’, I got down the container of markers and put a little of each colour into a container, grabbed some cotton buds and paper and sat down to experiment and create with my kids.

easy art for kids - marker paint

The colours were not quite as bright as I was hoping, but considering we only used one or two markers per colour it turned out great.

easy art for kids - marker paint

After a bit of fun with the paints Izzy wondered if the paints would work with candles or crayons as ‘magic painting‘ so we had a go and discovered they did. The marker paints are very similar to food dye but they cleaned up much easier and didn’t stain our fingers as badly.

easy art for kids

So don’t throw out your old dried up markers… they still have a lot of creating left in them!

easy art for kids - marker paint

Linking up with It’s Play Time at  Let the Children Play and The Play Academy with NurtureStore.

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Cathy October 11, 2011 at 2:52 pm

Excellent idea! The paintings look great – they seem bright to me! Thanks for sharing!

Kate @ Puddles and Gumboots October 11, 2011 at 2:58 pm

What a clever idea! I am definitely giving this a go!

umatji October 11, 2011 at 7:23 pm

what a great idea – a perfect use for imperfect markers.

Jo @Countrylifeexperiment October 11, 2011 at 7:35 pm

I love the idea. I was about to sort through our textas – we may be doing this one on the weekend!

Zoey @ Good Googs October 11, 2011 at 9:46 pm

Now I just have to wait for some of our markers to run out!

jwg October 11, 2011 at 10:20 pm

Try sprinkling baking soda on wet hands and rubbing to get food coloring or liquid watercolor out of skin. Follow it with soap and water. It does a better job than soap alone. This looks like fun. Does it matter whether the markers are washable or not?

katef October 12, 2011 at 10:16 am

Oh thanks for the backing soda tip! I always have stained fingers! LOL
I’m not sure if they need to be washable but I’d think the markers need to be water based or it won’t work.

Brenda Mott October 11, 2011 at 11:50 pm

Brilliant! I revive my old markers this way but never thought to use the colored water. I just love it!!

Marcia Reagan October 12, 2011 at 3:32 am

Thanks for sharing this. I run a large daycare and use markers all the time so I have a lot that dry up and I throw away. I can’t wait to try this idea. I’m going to “like” your fan page on Facebook so I can follow all your great ideas!

Missa Katie October 12, 2011 at 4:49 am

It warms my heart that you guys tried this and it turned out so well! What beautiful paintings! I think kiddos get just as much of a kick out of “recycling” as we grown-ups do! :)

katef October 12, 2011 at 10:17 am

My kids definitely got a kick out of seeing something they would normally throw away used again… and in such a cool way! Thanks so much for sharing this with everyone. We’ll be doing it again and again!

permanently amanda October 12, 2011 at 7:14 am

And, of course, we just threw out a heap of markers at the start of last week, d’oh!

Will remember this for next time :)

Amy A @ Child Central Station October 12, 2011 at 1:01 pm

This actually works much better if you take the marker apart – the inside bleeds much better when it is out of the marker… And you can also use the dried markers to color on slime/gak/silly putty. You can see from my post, I started doing this the same way you did… but it works so much better when you take the markers apart.. And you can use all of the marker parts for other things too! Oh, and the marker dye/stain works great on wood too!


Amy A @ Child Central Station October 12, 2011 at 1:02 pm

OH, I forgot to mention that shaving cream works great to take care of the finger staining too… or table, or carpet…

katef October 12, 2011 at 2:07 pm

thanks so much for these great tips! Bloggers are such great people for fab ideas and tips!

Vicky October 14, 2011 at 3:21 pm

Wow, that is a great way to use dying markers. I love the finished results. The colors are SO vibrant. Thanks for sharing! I am a new Twitter follower visiting from It’s Playtime. Vicky from http://www.messforless.net

maggy, red ted art October 16, 2011 at 4:40 am

What a fabulous way to get a bit more life out of your pens! We currently have few felt tip pens…. but as our collections grow I will be sure to know what to do with the old ones!


Bek @ Just For Daisy March 25, 2014 at 8:19 pm

This is fabulous Kate! Pinning and will give this a shot with all our lidless markers!

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