Mar 4, 2013

A Little DIY Watercolor Art

I won't pretend like I'm an real artist, but have always loved to paint. I love acrylics and use those quite frequently, but I dabble in a little watercolor every once in a while. And by 'every once in a while' I mean in high school painting random things AND 2.5 years ago painting my wedding invitations AND only this weekend painting a little homemade wall art. Not exactly a frequent painter...

The watercolor began in first grade... or maybe even kindergarten. I know because that's where I learned first to watercolor and I still use the very same supplies. Cup of water, brush, paper towels, and ye old strip of washable watercolor paints.

Really though, this is the exact paint tray I used in first grade. See my name on it?

They make fancier watercolors that the professionals use and you can find those at the art supply store and craft stores. But I just use the old strip guy (that doesn't sound right...) and you can find that one at any big grocery store or dollar store for like one dollar. They've worked well for me so far.

Like I mentioned, I used them a few years back to add color to my wedding invitations. Being the painter I am (lol) and wanting to save a little on the invitations, I was determined to make them myself (with the help of my mom, of course). So I made up a little document in Microsoft Word, brought in some flower outlines, and printed those guys in black and white on white card stock  Then added purple water color by hand to each and every one of those five-hundred and something invitations. Funny thing is, it took only one afternoon and I think a lot of people thought I bought our invites. They were fancy... hand-painted... ooo.

So when I wanted to make some homemade wall art for my new hallway project, I went back to the watercolors. The entire process is pretty simple. I jumped onto Microsoft Word and created a document that I could paint. You would use any important or random words, letters, dates, initials for this project. You can use almost any font, but the key is to change the font settings you want to paint to "Outline" in Microsoft Word. You simply highlight the text and click on the font tab. From there select "Outline" and you will end up with only the outline of the letters so that you can paint the insides.

Depending on what version of Microsoft Word you have the "Outline" option may or may not be as easy to access. But I believe in you, you can find it! If you have Office 2010, you have to look harder but it is there!

Anyways, I played around a little with a few patterns and fonts and ended up with this design. Printed it out in black and white and was ready to go.

I mixed a little blue and purple and got to painting in my letters. It wasn't perfect, but it's watercolor so I feel like it's not supposed to be...

I liked the blue-purple mix, but I also wanted to try a blue-green mix. So I did both real quick and compared them.

And even thought I love purple, I loved the watercolor-ness of the blue-green lettering. Just something about it.

So then I pulled out one of my cheap-but-fancy Ikea frames and I cropped the paper to fit the frame. I ended up putting a blank white sheet of paper behind the watercolor in the frame because the printer paper I used was a little thin and it helped the frame backing not show through as much.

And this was the final product. Right there in my lap ready to go (boo yellow-ish mat, maybe I can fix that...). Still love it!

I just love how simple it is to make something like that. And like I said, you can do it with anything: dates, names, flowers, anything really. I just picked something that's meant a lot to me in the last year... but we'll be talking more about all that on Wednesday...

Happy Monday. Go make some art this week! Maybe watercolor?


  1. Did you know if you flip those ikea mats around that they are white on the other side? You lose the bevelled edge, but it usually seems worth it to me.

    1. Kelly! Thanks! That totally worked, I thought I was going to have to go out and buy a white mat... or spray paint it (which didn't seem like a good idea lol).


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...