P is for Painting Abstracts

painting abstracts

Charlie and Lena know their Primary and Secondary colors. Even though they’ve mastered this knowledge, we still revisit it on occasion to show them how they can use these colors in different ways to make artwork and reinforce the knowledge they already have.

Earlier this year we worked on Primary Color Abstracts. They were easy to make and the kids loved them.  This idea was sparked from projects I did on my own as a kid.  Do you remember drawing random squiggly lines all over a paper, then coloring them in in different ways?

That’s exactly what we did, only we limited the painting to primary colors. We did a another of secondary colors.

During this project we asked the girls what the primary colors were, then what the secondary colors were.  We took the information a step further and asked them if they knew why each were classified in it’s respective group, which the girls understood. The primary colors are used to make the secondary colors. Then they told us which primary colors were mixed to make each of the secondary colors.

Next we talked about what an abstract art piece was. This was also a continuing conversation from earlier in the month when we visited the art museum and Charlie had questions about a couple different abstracts she found interesting.

I doodled out a couple of simple designs and let the girls pick which one they wanted, gave each some paint and let them create.

Here is one of the doodles I came up with.


Here’s is Lena’s primary color abstract. I love her style!

Lena primary


Charlie did a great job too!

Charlie primary

I’ll be honest. I have no talent compared to these two. Mine was quite boring and lacked emotion. Coloring in the lines is overrated!

my primary


To paint these we used Crayola Washable Paints. They had decent color, but because they are washable they are water based, and we found them to be really thin. It took a lot of coats to get  a bright color, and Charlie painted through the paper on one because she wanted the color brighter and used too much paint.  These paints are great for some other projects, but for this one I feel the bright colors are important and next time we’ll probably use a tempera paint.

Have fun exploring with this style, it was a lot of fun and it was a good way to let the kids explore the different qualities of color without feeling like they had to paint something specific. When they get a bit older I plan on doing something with monochromatic colors and complimentary colors. Even something to demonstrate warm and cool colors would be great! Be creative!

Have you ever painted an abstract? Did you have a theme in mind when you did?

A to Z blog Challenge


    • Mary

      I’ve recently rediscovered my love for painting. It’s almost like it was the locked door to my creativity. Once I learned to push the boundaries on that, I realized I could do anything, and it made other areas of my life easier. Crazy how that works!

  • Cristina

    No way Mary! Yous looks perfect. Just like the hugging teddybear Mama that you are!

    I did the same with painter tape on a paper – created squares and let them color. We display their artwork (changing it out periodically) on the mantle. Love painting with the kids.
    Cristina recently posted…P is for PentecostMy Profile

    • Mary

      We display pictures on the fridge, but I might have to follow your lead on the mantle. That would be a great place to put some of their work. I could easily frame it too. They would love that!

    • Mary

      Let me know how you like it! I can’t wait to read some of your work, but it might take me a bit…don’t let me forget to get over to your site! I want to see what you have going on too!

  • Julie Jordan Scott

    All I ever paint are abstracts. I have too many “real artist” friends who know what they are doing to try any form of realism. One of these days….maybe… but I do love what you have done with your children. I remember when I was homeschooling one of the assignments was to do a self portrait. I enjoy abstract self portraits. I actually created a bizarre sculpture that was alive as a self portrait… as a Mommy complete with umbilical cord still attached. I was… avante garde, perhaps?
    Julie Jordan Scott recently posted…P is for Persistence: The Bold Writer from A to ZMy Profile

    • Mary

      I am in love with realism, which is a show of my detail oriented, logical side. However, I do have a soft spot for abstract, it’s just hard to get me moving on it. When I do, I do great, but then my mind works hard to make realistic connections within it. There is always a story to tell. Always.

  • Mrs. Sexy

    Hi! I’m popping over from the A to Z challenge. Your blog caught my eye because it has the word “homeschool” in it. I’m always looking for new blogs on the subject as I’m homeschooling my daughter for the first time this semester. I’m not very creative though! I’m going to following along the rest of the month! You seem like a very creative person.
    Mrs. Sexy recently posted…Poop: My Journey Through ParenthoodMy Profile

    • Mary

      So glad you found my blog! Keep up because this was my intro month to the blog. I can’t wait to see what we come up with. We’re homeschooling “officially” as soon as we register my daughter in May. I never feel like I’m that creative either, but I do have a few tricks up my sleeve! I hope we can keep in contact, I’m sure we can both share some ideas and inspiration. Also, check out my Pinterest wall (up there on the right hand side bar). It has a ton of great ideas I’ve gathered from other sources and I’m always getting inspired there.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

CommentLuv badge

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.