It’s always a good time when I pull out the finger paints or paintbrushes and let my children know we are about to get messy! No matter what easy painting project I decide to complete with them, it doesn’t matter. Paint is their favorite and so much fun.
I know, I know if you have young kids, you may shy away from paint because of the mess it makes. But I promise you there are so many beginner easy things to paint for kids that you will find something you can handle.
These paint ideas aren’t just for younger kids! Older kids love to try these methods and techniques too. There are 4 tutorials and special painting ideas for older kids at the bottom of the post.
Beginner Easy Things to Paint For Kids
Young children are always ready to get a little messy. If you can come up with some fun painting ideas, then you could be helping to create some young artists.
You’ll find a lot of different process art projects below. Process art is child directed and choice driven and lets children discover. The child should be focused mostly on the steps they are taking and not the end results. These beginner easy things to paint for kids are great for all ages and use many forms and mediums.
Grab some paint, q-tips, and a piece of white paper or a blank canvas. Use the q-tip and dip the top into the paint. Then have your child create beautiful pictures using any type of paint type you feel is best, whether that’s tempera paint or washable.
In this picture, a rainbow was the goal. For older kids it is ok to encourage using dots to make a different shape. That technique is called pointillism. For young children, an open ended exploration of colors of paint and stamping the q-tip is all they need.
Egg Shell Painting
Egg shell painting is definitely an outside art experience. Reuse egg shells and fill them with paint. Then throw or drop them onto a canvas.
Apple painting is a fun Fall painting experience, but it can also be done any other time of the year. Also try stamping potatoes, corn, etc.
Drive your small cars and trucks through the paint and then onto the paper. This is a fun way to experiment with making lines, mixing colors (use two colors that mix together well), and even gravity.
Crayon Resist Painting
All ages love this technique. Draw on a page with white crayon. Younger children can make marks of any shape or size while older children can draw specific things. Then, spread watercolor paint over top to reveal the art.
Toilet Brush Painting
Painting with a toilet brush is a cool experience for little ones. Get one at a dollar store and use a big piece of cardboard as a canvas.
Finger Painting on Sand Paper
Finger painting onto sand paper is a neat sensory experience! Pick up sand paper at a dollar store and see what you can create!
This fireworks painting idea is something we use to countdown on New Years with kids, but it can be done any time of the year. Twist the pipe cleaners to make a firework shape and stamp them onto the paper to make cool art.
Water down paint and put a spoonful on top of the paper. Use a straw to blow the paint and watch it spread. This can also be done with watercolor.
Paint with a Roller
Use a craft roller or a small paint roller that is used for cabinets and trim and let your child roll on the paint. This is a different skill and fun to explore. Use the rollers to paint on a vertical surface like a fence using water or chalk paint.
Paint with water on windows and stick craft foam pieces on top of the water to make abstract art. This is one of our favorites and it is so easy to do over and over again. Make different craft foam shapes or use different colors for each holiday.
Use real or artificial flowers for flower painting. Press the flower into the paint and stamp it onto the page. This creates a cool texture. Try black paper and white paint for a unique look.
Corn on the Cob Painting
Roll a cob of corn through paint and roll it onto the paper. A fun texture is left behind and rolling the cob of corn is so much fun.
Raised Salt Paintings
Raised Salt Paintings are a fun experiment that make a cool picture. You need glue, salt, and watercolor paints.
Have you ever thought about changing your canvas to noodles? In this noodle painting activity, we used uncooked lasagna noodles and it was so much fun!
Rubber Band Painting
Who knew you could create a beautiful painting using just rubber bands? Following the step-by-step tutorial, you can complete a fun art activity using watercolor paints. Children of all ages will absolutely love the experience and create a beautiful finished product.
Source: Babble Dabble Do
No Mess Finger Painting
If you have a toddler who may want to put their fingers in their mouth as soon as they see something colorful on them. You may want to try no-mess finger painting. It’s not only mess free but will help your little one with fine motor skills. All you will need is some tempera or washable paint, a gallon-sized baggie, and a piece of white paper.
Source: Kids Activities Blog
When it comes to simple ideas, drip painting may be at the top of the list. All your child will need to do is hold the brush with paint on it above the vertical paper or canvas and just let the paint drip off and onto their workspace.
Source: Artful Parent
Edible Finger Paint
Now, you may want to let your child get their hands dirty while still ensuring they stay safe in case some paint makes it to their mouth. A fun way to create art projects using different color paints that will pass the taste test is to create edible finger paint. You’ll need a few household items like a bowl, whisk, cornstarch, and food coloring.
Source: Learning 4 Kids
Paint with Pom Poms
Another fun way to let your child try new techniques like strokes or dots is to paint with pom poms. Attach different size pom poms to clothes pins and let your child create beautiful works of art.
Masking Tape Abstract
Easily create an abstract painting using masking tape. Let your child place masking tape on a canvas wherever their heart desires. Once they have placed the tape where they feel it fits best, have them grab some craft paint and paint each section still showing. Once the paint has dried, pull the masking tape up to reveal the finished product.
Use a baking sheet or a box to keep the marble on the art. Set a piece of paper inside the box and put paint on top. Then, roll marbles or golf balls through the paint to create a design.
Cotton Ball Rainbows
Along the same lines as the pom pom painting above, there are many art projects that kids can do with cotton balls too. Create this beautiful rainbow using colors, cotton balls, and paper.
Source: Kids Craft Room
Paper Towel Water Colors
Grab a paper towel, paintbrush, and some watercolor paints because this paper towel art project is awesome. A simple brush touch on the paper towel spreads the watercolor and makes beautiful designs.
Source: Gift of Curiosity
Shaving Cream Painting
When it’s warm outside, it’s always a great idea to take your art projects to the backyard (or front). A simple and fun way to enjoy painting outside is to make and use shaving cream paint. You’ll just need shaving cream, food coloring, and a muffin or cupcake tray. Let your kiddos paint on the glass doors or windows. Shaving cream will leave them shiny.
Source: Happy Hooligans
Tissue Paper Art
Who knew you could create a beautiful piece of art when you sprayed tissue paper with water? It’s an easy way to make a beginner painting. You and your child will need a specific type of art tissue paper named “bleeding tissue paper,” a spray bottle, and a piece of card stock, canvas, etc. Just position the various colors on the paper and spray. Once it is dry, just peel the tissue paper off to reveal the beautiful creation below.
Source: Me, Them, and The Others
Bubble Wrap Masterpiece
Who knew that bubble wrap could be used to create an awesome and easy way to entertain kids of all ages? You’ll just want to have some pieces of paper, pieces of bubble wrap, brushes, and paint ready to go. It’s a great way to show children that you can use household items to create awesome art.
DIY Sidewalk Chalk
Sidewalk chalk is great, but the sticks break so easily, or a child ends up rubbing their knuckles on the ground. A solution to your problems may be this DIY sidewalk chalk paint made with just three simple ingredients you can find right in your pantry. It’s an absolutely awesome at home project.
Oil Pastel Painting
Drawing with oil pastels seems always to be a favorite in art classes. So, why not bring that excitement into the painting world? Easily turn an oil pastel drawing into an oil pastel painting with just one simple ingredient. Oil! Using baby oil or a type of cooking oil, and q-tips, simply go over the finished drawing and easily blend colors together. A great way to turn one art project into two.
Taking simple ideas and turning them into art is something that has always amazed me. Like blowing bubbles in your drink, who knew this could help encourage children to become more artistic?
First, you’ll want to create a bubble solution with paint. After that, let your children blow bubbles into it using a straw. Once the bubbles are nice and big, place a piece of paper over the bubbles. Finally, pull off the paper to see the masterpiece.
Source: Happiness is Homemade
Yes, you read that right. This is an activity that encourages children to play with their food. Using edible paint, grab a couple of slices of bread and let your child paint away. They can create a rainbow, polka dots, really anything their heart desires.
Source: Kids Craft Room
Giving children another reason to play with their food. Children will love this berry painting idea, whether you decide to use raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, and all of them. Your child will get a kick out of being able to eat the different objects they are using to create art!
All you’ll need is a paint type like tempera or washable, paper, and a paper or plastic cup. Let your child create a circle painting by using the rim of the cup to make paint circles on the paper. We used plastic Easter eggs in this Toddler painting activity.
It’s always fun to use different objects to create art. These fork flowers are simple and probably one of my favorite easy painting ideas. You can easily make these flowers with paint and plastic forks, or if you don’t mind, you can use your kitchen forks.
Source: The Best Ideas for Kids
Dandelion Fingerprint Craft
If you are looking for easy things to paint with kids, this dandelion fingerprint painting may be the perfect addition to your list. All you’ll need is a piece of paper or canvas, a black sharpie, and any type of paint. Washable is probably the easiest to get off of fingers.
Source: Glued To My Crafts
I don’t know about you, but I remember spending hours using my Spin Art, and I absolutely loved watching the colors move and mix. Such a simple idea, but it allowed for hours of fun. There’s an easy way to recreate this toy using materials around the house. Gather up a salad spinner, tempera paints, paper plates, or coffee filters, and get spinning.
Source: Artful Parent
Another fun project for older kids that doesn’t require much skill are these strawberry themed rocks. They will look adorable in any garden, or you could easily leave them throughout your neighborhood or town and let others enjoy them as well. Once your child gets the strawberry design down, they could try other fruits and vegetables, and then you can use them as vegetable and fruit garden markers. Source: Sustain my Craft Habit
Check out all of our Rock Painting Ideas for Kids!
Shaving Cream Earth Painting
Grab your shaving cream and get ready to make a beautiful Earth using a few simple materials, including shaving cream, paper plates, green and blue liquid gel food coloring, a baking sheet, craft sticks, and paper towels. Let your kids get messy as they press the paper plate into the green and blue shaving cream to make their own earth.
Source: The Simple Parent
Spray Bottle Galaxy
Every child loves the stars, and they can make a handprint galaxy using a couple of simple techniques and supplies. Grab some black paper, spray bottles, and acrylic paint. Your child will be able to create a painting that may get confused with the galaxy above our heads.
Source: Buggy and Buddy
Cardboard Firework Painting
I’m the person who is always throwing cardboard boxes out in the garage for my husband to recycle, and I know he’s going to love it when I tell him I found a way to use some of them. These cardboard fireworks are a great craft for any time of year but would be perfect for the 4th of July.
Source: Projects with Kids
Birch Trees and Salt
Use watercolors, a black crayon, painter’s tape, and salt on this piece of art. Young artists can create a beautiful rainbow-colored picture of birch trees that people will think a professional artist created. The best part is this project can be done on card stock, or you can create a canvas art project to ensure it lasts forever.
Source: The Educator’s Spin On It
The Night Sky
Starry Night by Van Gogh is one of the most famous paintings in history. Showing children the painting, have them try and create their own starry night using aluminum foil, a q-tip, and a variety of colors like blue, black, and white paint. Let them share their take on this famous painting.
Source: Messy Little Monster
Abstract Shape Painting
Kandinsky is known for his abstract art and your kids can be too! Let them practice drawing different shapes like squares, triangles, and circles using a crayon. Afterwards, let them add some watercolor inside and around those shapes to create a beautiful shape abstract painting.
Source: amy bailey art
Balloon Dart Painting
You’ve probably watched videos or been to a gender reveal where they pop the balloons to reveal a certain color paint inside. This beginner easy things to paint for kids idea goes along those same lines. Probably best for older children, this balloon dart painting is a great outdoor activity, and the results are different every time. If you aren’t keen on using darts, fill water balloons with watered down paint and throw them at the canvas.
Source: hello, Wonderful
Beginning Painting Ideas for Older Kids
Herringbone Pattern Art Canvas
Another project for older kiddos, this herringbone art project is fun and could make an awesome piece of artwork for their bedroom. You’ll need some painter’s tape, acrylic paint, and a canvas or large piece of paper. This project may take a couple of hours or days, so it’s a great way to teach patience with art.
Source: View Along The Way
Abstract Lines and Shapes Painting
It’s always a fun time when you can include older children when it comes to beginner art projects. This painting is all about different patterns and shapes, and the best is that children can create it however they want. There is no wrong way.
Source: create with mrs. rock
These beginner easy things to paint for kids projects are not all focused on the toddler age group. If you have a child who is a little older but is really wanting to experiment with art and painting, having them watch a painting tutorial may be beneficial and fun.
Source: Step By Step Painting
Tropical Sunset Canvas
If you have a child who may be a little older and is looking for a way to try new techniques, you may want to try a video tutorial. YouTube is a great resource with many art tutorials to help children get started. This specific tutorial uses oil paints and lets your child create a piece of canvas art that looks like a starry tropical sunset.
Source: Lena Danya
When looking for art projects to do with your children, it can seem like a lot of them need a good amount of skill to complete. But that’s not always the case. These beginner easy things to paint for kids ideas are perfect for toddlers, budding artists, or just for a rainy day.
Any of the ideas above are the ideal beginner painting project and your children will not only have fun completing the painting but also learn a lot along the way.
Still looking for more painting ideas that kids love? Here are 75 ways to paint for kids from A to Z. Use them with a letter of the week curriculum, go through the list one at a time, or browse and find the perfect project!