There’s just nothing like vibrant colorful watercolor painting for kids to brighten up a boring afternoon indoors.
Your kids’ eyes sparkle when they see the magic of the pigment coming alive with just a dab of a watery paintbrush.
And then your mama-heart swells with joy as they explore and expand their creativity with every brushstroke of rich color.
Find Some Happy with Watercolor Painting for Kids!
Yesterday, the kids and I spent a happy afternoon using our favorite colorful Prang watercolors and markers to do this crazy pattern-filled butterfly watercolor painting project.
Here’s how you can have some colorful happy watercolor fun with your kids too…
A Crazy-Colorful Butterfly Watercolor Painting for Kids
First, here’s a video of our colorful creative fun…
Now, let’s get started with the full tutorial…
- watercolor paper (or other thick paper)
- black crayon
- Prang Watercolor Set
- paint brush
- cup, with water
- paper towel
- Prang Classic Markers
I’ve loved Prang watercolors since my art teaching days.
They are AP certified non-toxic, which is great for all kids but essential in an art classroom setting. And I just loved how the intense wax-free pigment laid down such vibrant color on the paper. No blah washed-out colors for my students!
So I’m thrilled to be sharing some Prang watercolor goodness with my kids at home now too.
Butterfly Watercolor Painting Steps:
For this butterfly watercolor painting for kids, you start by using a black crayon to draw a big butterfly on watercolor paper.
I added antennae and black stripes to my butterfly’s body, but you should let the kids be creative and design their butterfly however they want.
Then use the black crayon to add some swirly and curvy lines inside each butterfly wing. The goal of this is to break the wings up into funky abstract shapes you can paint.
The waxy crayon will act as a resist to the watercolor paint, so it will be easier for young kids to keep colors from mixing together and getting “muddy.”
Now on to the Happy Watercolor Painting!
Grab your Prang watercolor set, your cup of water, and paper towels, and paint a bright color in each crazy shape inside the wings.
I stuck with four colors: red, orange, yellow, and purple. I left blue and green to use in my background. But it really doesn’t matter, just try not to have the same color in shapes that touch one another.
Use the wet-on-wet watercolor technique to paint the background. To do this, paint large sections of the background with clean water first, then touch your color-filled watercolor brush lightly onto the still-wet paper.
Watch the kid’s eyes light up when they see the rich colors expand and bleed into one another!
Allow your butterfly watercolor painting to dry fully before moving on. The next steps would be good for more art fun the following day.
Use Prang Markers to Add Crazy Patterns!
With your butterfly watercolor painting dry, it’s time to move on to adding patterns with our Prang art markers!
To be honest, I had never used Prang brand art markers before, but I was totally impressed with how bright the colors apply and how durable the tips are. And it’s a plus that their AP certified non-toxic formula won’t dry out even if the cap is off for over 24 hours!
Use your Prang markers to draw a different pattern in each crazy shape inside the butterfly wings. It’s okay if you repeat patterns, but try not to have the same pattern in shapes that touch one another.
I decided to use a specific color for each color of shapes (i.e. all yellow shapes had purple marker patterns, all orange shapes had red marker patterns). I also used my markers to add some rainbow awesomeness to my butterfly’s body.
But always choose creativity over rules and let the kids make their own creative choices!
That’s it. Your Crazy-Colorful Butterfly Watercolor Painting for Kids is done!
And hopefully, you’ve found some happiness and joy while doing it with your kids.
Check Out the Kids’ Watercolor Paintings:
I didn’t want to bug my kids too much while they were creating, but I did get one photo of Priscilla painting her butterfly.
J.C. had fun doing this easy watercolor painting project too! His painting is the bottom one in the photo below. Priscilla’s finished masterpiece is the top one.
Extensions for this Butterfly Watercolor Painting for Kids:
- Add some art history to this watercolor painting project! Show the kids examples of Pop Art like artwork from Romero Britto, Roy Lichtenstein, and Keith Haring.
- Use this watercolor painting as a warm vs. cool colors art lesson. Have the kids use only warm colors in the butterfly and cool colors in the background. Or vice versa.
- Talk about the use of the element of line for making patterns. And practice funky patterns before adding them to the butterfly wings.
- Try a different subject matter! You could use basic shapes with preschoolers just learning their shapes. Or any shape with large open spaces.
More Color & More Happy from Prang!
There’s always room for more happy color in your day!
Like this Watercolor Painting for Kids? Pin It & Share It!
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More Art & Painting Ideas for Kids:
- Exploring Complementary Colors with a “Magic Colors” Kids Art Project
- Fingerprint Pointillism Painting for Kids – Inspired by Seurat
- Silly Sensory Ball Kids Painting
- 7 STEAM Art Activities your Kids Will Love