Kid-Friendly Art Project: Raised Salt Painting

The reaction of water and salt is a visible phenomenon if you use watercolor paints, which is why this simple, kid-friendly art project might be the perfect creative experiment for you and your family. Design creative patterns, explore blending colors with ease and create artwork that you won’t be shy to show off on the fridge.

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

Help your kids make colorful works of art using salt, glue, and watercolor paints.

Photo by: Emily Fazio

Emily Fazio

What You'll Need

  • glue
  • kosher salt
  • table salt
  • large mixing bowl
  • paintbrushes
  • watercolor paints
  • watercolor paper or heavier cardstock

Drizzle Your Glue Lines

If your child has been clamoring at the idea of squeezing that glue bottle 'til it’s empty, here’s a good time to let loose. Atop the watercolor paper (or any heavy-duty cardstock) allow them to create patterns, swirls, letters or blobs of white glue. Seriously, let them have some fun with this step.

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

Help your kids make colorful works of art using salt, glue, and watercolor paints.

Photo by: Emily Fazio

Emily Fazio

Top With Assorted Salts

Have your child sprinkle a blend of coarse kosher salt and ordinary table salt on top of the wet glue using their fingers.

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

Help your kids make colorful works of art using salt, glue, and watercolor paints.

Photo by: Emily Fazio

Emily Fazio

Once it’s pretty coated, help them shake the salt around the paper to achieve excellent coverage over the glue. Position the mixing bowl in a convenient spot, and use it to capture the excess salt. Tap-tap-tap on the paper to ensure that the loose granules make it into the bowl.

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

Help your kids make colorful works of art using salt, glue, and watercolor paints.

Allow the Glue to Dry

Waiting is the hardest part for little kids, but allow a few hours for the thick, salt-coated glue to dry completely before you start painting for the best effect.

Paint the Rainbow

Applying paint onto the dried salt lines is neat to witness, regardless of age. Watercolor paints are the ideal medium for this craft because the water used is quick to absorb and flow through the salt crystals. You won’t need lots of water in the paint, and remember to apply the color gently. Just a drop of paint onto the salt will diffuse in all directions, though note how it flows only throughout the salt lines and leaves the paper relatively unaffected.

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

Help your kids make colorful works of art using salt, glue, and watercolor paints.

Photo by: Emily Fazio

Emily Fazio

Applying different colors in sequence makes it easy to flow one color into another, transforming the dried salt into a free-flowing rainbow.

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

Help your kids make colorful works of art using salt, glue, and watercolor paints.

Photo by: Emily Fazio

Emily Fazio

Allow the Paint to Dry

Set the painted artwork aside to dry. Once dried, give it another good tap-tap-tap over the bowl to collect any salt that loosened.

Frame Your Art

If you’d like to frame your child’s art, it's best to choose a gallery frame so that the raised salt artwork has space behind the glass.

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

How to Use Watercolors for Salt Painting

Help your kids make colorful works of art using salt, glue, and watercolor paints.

Photo by: Emily Fazio

Emily Fazio

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