Cardboard Paintings: Exploring Primary Colors

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Last week I made some cardboard canvases for my 3-yr old class. They were totally digging the format and each of them painted two or three or more paintings. I cut some pieces big, and some small. I primed some with a light gray paint, and some I left unpainted. I drilled holes in the top corners so that the paintings could be hung (the best part). I used tempera paints and mixed a little bit of white with the three primary colors, just to make them a little bit opaque. These little kids had never been exposed to the words primary colors, and they didn’t know that they could be mixed to make new colors. It was a whole new world for them!

simple recycled art project for littles

I was able to capture the smile on Martina’s face when she discovered that yellow and blue make green, and yellow and red make orange!

simple recycled art project for littles

simple recycled art project for littles

simple recycled art project for littles

As they got more confident with their painting, they began to cover their whole canvas rather than just painting in one spot. Eventually, they all decided unanimously that they wanted just solid color paintings. I don’t know why exactly, but I went with it. In the end, when the monochromatic ones were all in a row they looked very cool and very constructivist, like Alexander Rodchenko. A triptych!

simple recycled art project for littles

I love how Madsie kept painting pink canvases for her mama.

simple recycled art project for littles

simple recycled art project for littles

I will definitely be doing this project again. The kids loved the cardboard and they loved mixing colors. It would be fun with older kids to set out a still life and introduce them to an artistic style. Like Gaugin or Matisse…painters who really loved their colors!

xo, Bar