When I saw the little plastic pump bottles I knew they’d be perfect for some sprat art, but it was my boys who came up with the idea of spraying objects to leave their silhouette and turned this activity from boring old spray painting to cool stencil spray art!
Most of the time we keep things simple and uncomplicated when it comes to art activities, but sometimes we go a little bit crazy and try something new and adventurous! This spray art activity was a little bit messy, but with some good preparation and a big chunk of time the boys and I had so much fun exploring this easy art activity.
To make your own stencil spray art you’ll need:
- Small pump spray bottles – we got ours from the dollar store, they were packaged as travel toiletry bottles.
- Liquid watercolours, or tempera paint with lots of water added and well mixed
- A large covered surface to work on
- Large pieces of watercolour paper or thick un-coated paper
- A selection of interesting, flatish, objects
- Smocks, aprons or old clothes
- A damp cloth to wipe fingers and messes
- Somewhere flat to dry your paintings
The boys and I spent a lot of time collecting items we thought would leave an interesting silhouette. We discovered that flattish items left a clearer outline, but all the items we tried crated interesting results. Just be sure whatever you choose is easily washable because they will get covered in paint!
Here are some of the items we used for our stencils:
- Rubber Bands
- Flat Lego
- Plastic Cutlery
- Threading shapes
- A key
- Bubble wands
- Glass gems
Once we had everything we needed, now came the fun part! Arrange your items on the page and start spraying!!
Morgan, who is seven, enjoyed carefully arranging items to create pictures, or in neat symmetrical patterns. He loved experimenting with mixing the colours, and how spraying from different angles and heights left different impressions of the items on your page.
Noah, who is four, worked his hand muscles hard mastering the pump bottles. He loved to fill his entire page with items and then drown them in paint. He discovered that you could spray one layer of colour, then move your items and spray a different colour of paint to leave different coloured silhouettes. Taking the items off the paper was like magic for Noah.
I loved watching the different approaches my two boys brought to this activity.
We all spent lots of time experimenting and exploring with the spray bottles, running off to grab a new item we thought might make an interesting stencil. I had as much fun with this art activity as my kids did!
I was surprised by how little mess we created. There were no accidental sprays of paint to deal with, and because I made sure each of the boys had a big, covered space to use, any of the excess paint was contained by the paper we used to cover the table.
There was quite a few items to wash up in the end, but the boys were happy to help with that (and watch the water change colours as they washed) and because we used liquid water colours the items we used and our hands washed up really easily.
A little mess was a small price to pay for lots of creativity, experimentation, and fun!
If you can handle a little mess you might like these fun art activities:
If you are just not up for the mess or hassle right now then you might like these simple, low mess ideas: