Creative Kids: Five Great Ways To Paint Without A Brush

Welcome back to Creative Kids!  If you’re looking for some great indoor fun for the upcoming school holidays you’ll love today’s post from Ruth at Craft With Cartwright

In my time as a teacher and as a mum encouraging my children’s creativity I have often found children to get stuck in a mindset of the ‘right’ way to draw and the ‘right’ way to paint. I find it deeply tragic when children and adults tell me that they can’t do it. Just because you don’t like the result when you put a brush to paper does not mean you are not capable of being a painter. It just means you haven’t found your way of painting yet. Here are my five great ways to paint without a brush.
 paint without a brush

So if you feel like breaking free of the ‘right’ way to paint. Loose the brush and try these five great ideas instead. You might just find you find your or your child’s perfect way to paint and release all the creative potential.

1 Dot Painting

Whether to choose to be really messy and get back to early childhood painting with your finger tips or use cotton buds. Painting with dots is great fun. The rhythmic pattern play is so relaxing. This style links to early paintings and can be seen a lot in aboriginal work.

paint without a brush

2. Painting With Bubbles

We love doing this in our house. Just mix up a half cup of water based paint, with a table spoon of water to loosen it and a tablespoon of washing up liquid in a large bowl. Use a straw and blow bubbles in the mix. Lay paper over the top and print your own bubbly painting. Just remember to watch children blow and don’t drink the paint.

3. Painting With Feathers

Feel really old school and use feathers to delicately tickle the paint onto paper. It gives a great wispy, natural flow to your artwork. They are also great dipped in paint and pressed between two sheets of paper to make a print.

4. Paint Without Brushes – Use Potatoes!

Everyone loves a potato print. Not just for infants, potato printing can be taken to a whole new level. Try using cookie cutters to aid you in creating more complex shapes in the potato and then stamp away to your hearts content.

paint without a brush

5. Paint With Cardboard

Use strips of cardboard to apply paint in smears, like old school masters would have used a pallet knife in oil paintings. Try cutting different shaped cardboard strips, with curved or zig zag edges to experiment with different mark making in the paint.

Author Bio

Hi I’m Ruth Cartwright, Mum, blogger, teacher and full time tea drinker. I write the Lifestyle blog I help women become Modern Homemakers, so that they feel happier with their work / life balance. 

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Have you done a creative project with your kids that you’d like to share?  Do you have a brilliant messy play task?  If you’d like to write a guest blog post around getting arty, crafty or messy with kids please email me at  Find out more about the series here.

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