Watercolour Painting – How to Make Painting with Kids Stress Free and More Creative Inspiration

Another creative update to hopefully encourage you to add a little creativity to your week. Some creative projects I do on my own but others I plan so that my daughter Floss and I get creative together. We had a joint watercolour painting session this week.

I’ll tell you more about it later into the post but wanted to share my daughter’s first piece which totally encapsulated how we felt while painting together. However, before I tell you more, let me tell you about my crochet disaster.

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Crochet – Coastal Crochet CAL

As I mentioned in the last update, which you can find here, I’ve finally picked up my #SeasideStashBustingBlanket CAL (crochet along) after a LONG break. Do check out Eleonora from Coastal Crochet – I love her blog and CALs.

Anyhow, have you ever messed up a sudoku and felt it’s too hard to work out why you’ve got two 7s in the same row?! That’s what’s happened to me in my CAL. I’ve messed up. I’m not quite sure how and I think to rectify it I need to undo two whole rows!! Hence, I’ve stopped. Although, I’m determined to fix my mess and get back on track soon.

Creative Inspiration

What inspiration have you found lately? We’ve had a busy time with hospital appointments recently and Floss was delighted to discover a new installation outside the main entrance of Birmingham’s Children’s Hospital. She was also relieved to see that Owl and Bear who were the previous occupants of this space had just been moved to a new location close by!

Beautiful, Interesting Buildings

All around us there is inspiration and Floss’s creations this week have certainly taken inspiration from the buildings she’s seen. Birmingham Children’s Hospital, and the journey there, give the opportunity to see such a range of buildings from very old buildings to new edifices. Floss loves to take photos of interesting things she spots so that she can use them as reference at a later date. It’s a good idea for us all to do.

Beginner Watercolour Painting Continues

Following on from my rabbit water colour painting with Art Base in person I was able to make it to another session. This time it was to paint a robin. Again, I loved learning different techniques and building on my previous session skills I’d learnt.

The thing I’ve noticed after this session is that I can see some things I need to do differently, but more importantly, what I can do about it. In the robin picture I know I need to move the purple hue through the fork handle more so that the background seems more seamless. I also need more shades of browns and definition on my robin.

Floss saw the robin and decided that she wanted to do some watercolour painting. I’ve organised our resources so we can do painting easily with minimal set up and easy clearing away. I’ll share my tips below.

Using my Art Base’s online tutorial subscription that I got for my birthday I did a watercolour hedgehog tutorial while Floss got painting. I really enjoyed painting this as hedgehogs are one of my favourite things.

Fuss Free, Stress Free Painting

Here’s my top tips for fuss free, stress free painting with children:

  • Have a wipe clean surface to paint on.
  • Wear aprons – to encourage children to wear an apron I always wear an apron too.
  • Make sure the clothes everyone in the area is wearing you don’t mind if they get paint on.
  • If you can, paint alongside them even if it’s just occasionally. My daughter doesn’t like to have people tell her what to do (like most 6 year olds!) but she will happily watch what I do. Therefore when I paint I often model how I’m putting my paintbrush in the water etc. Sometimes I’ll narrate what I’m doing.
  • Resources organised. We have ‘tubs’ of art resources. There is a general painting tub which has jam jars, sponges and things to colour mix onto. This tub is brought out for any painting. We then have an acrylic paint tub and a watercolour paint tub. These have the paints and the specific brushes we use for that media. Having everything in tubs means it’s quick to put things away.
  • Make sure you have a place ready for drying. Some paintings can be pegged up while others will need to be lay flat until they are dry.
  • Get a bubbly bowl of washing up water ready for clear up too and you’ve got more chance of a helping hand.

These are things that help make painting more easy in our home and means when Floss decides she wants to paint it doesn’t feel like a chore and a stress to arrange.

The watercolour palettes we used you can find here. I have seen a couple of sets that include brushes too for a reasonable price here and here. I’m really tempted to upgrade to this one though. Floss also used our Stockmar watercolour paints; these last forever. We’ve had them a couple of years and we are nowhere near close to them running out. You mix them with a little water and can make them up to a wide spectrum of colours.

Tin Art

Mom’s been busy with her tin art again and has made a spectacular owl. I love how the aluminium can design from the reverse has been incorporated into the design. Mom uses nail varnish and POSCA pens to colour her designs. The owl is a real light versus dark in the same bird and it very much reminded me of one of my favourite reads of this year, Fledgling.

Creative – Arts & Crafts Finds

Photo from John Lewis

I had an email this week to say John Lewis had launched some arts and craft courses. There’s a free course on the 24th November 2022 for Drawing Pets with Derwent Graphitint Mixed Media Set. I can’t make this one but I’d be really interested to hear what you think if you attend (it’s online). I did have a little look at some of the other courses. You can see what in person and online courses they have available here.

John Lewis have a couple of crafty items on sale right now and I’ve just ordered the rainbows on the left. I’ve wanted to have a go at this craft for ages so I’m looking forward to the kit arriving.

Another John Lewis find that I was so tempted to get, maybe next time, was the Hawthorn Handmade Folklore Loom Weaving Kit. I haven’t done weaving since I was at school! Feels like a good project to do with my daughter though.

Arts and Crafts Community Group

It was such a great week this week at our community craft group. Thoroughly enjoyed sharing some beginner embroidery sewing skills with some of the group. These are skills my Nan taught me when I was a child and it felt so good to be passing them on.

I’m putting my plan together to share a 2D needle felting robin workshop next week and I can’t wait!

Happy creating x

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