Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

Crafty Mom: Blown away art

Posted May 3, 2012 8:41 p.m. EDT

Want to try painting with a fun twist? All you need is paper, paint, and a STRAW! There’s just one rule: you can only move the paint on the paper with your own air!

I came across the idea for straw-blown art this week and knew we had to try it. I wasn’t sure if my little ones would be able to blow hard enough through the straws to move the paint, but my 4-year-old did great and even my 2-year-old was able to move the paint a little. I ended up taking turns with my youngest and, through teamwork, we created quite the masterpiece. It was really fun to watch the paint being moved on the paper by the invisible air, and to watch the colors mix and mingle.

To prepare for this project, I set out sheets of paper; we used thick paper designed for water colors because it tends to stay flatter as it dries, but you can use whatever you have on hand. Next I squirted washable tempera paint in red, blue, yellow, and white randomly onto the paper. You can try this with any kind of paint you like, thinning it if necessary. Here’s an example using watercolors. (

Once set up, give your child a straw and prepare to be blown away! If your child is young or has difficulty blowing hard enough to move the paint, try a shorter straw or thinner paint. You can always just cut a plastic straw down to a more manageable size, or mix a little water into your paint. Before starting, do be sure your child understands they need to blow through the straw and not the opposite!

Don’t be ashamed if you want to try “Blown Away” art, too. When teaming up with my little one, she had to keep asking when it was her turn again because I was having so much fun! Just be sure to take breaks from blowing so you don’t get too light-headed!

Have fun!

Genny is a former Wake County Public School System elementary and reading teacher, who is now a stay-at-home mom of two preschoolers in Cary. Read more on her blog In Lieu of Preschool and Facebook page. Find her here a couple of times a month.