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Painting without Paintbrushes


If art is all about process, why limit creativity by limiting the tools? Add an innovative twist to your next painting project by omitting the store-bought paintbrushes.

On an outdoor table, provide paint, paper, and clothespins. Demonstrate how clipping a flower, leaf, or bunch of grass in a clothespin instantly produces a natural paintbrush. Then send the kids off in the yard to scavenge for their own unique collection of bristles.

Your budding artists will be quickly captivated as they discover how the patterns and textures of nature can be incorporated into their masterpieces. One child in my class was fascinated by the splotchy print of a clover flower, another by the firework effect of sweet gum seed pods. Craig spent most of his time simply clipping his large collection of brush-making materials in and out of the clothespins—the actual painting was merely an accessory!

This activity is definitely one to put on your list to try this summer. For more inspiration on how art and nature can be merged read The Wonder of Nature’s Colors.

Clothespin Paintbrushes


Story by: Rhonda (Community PlayThings)

post by: Jason Jacobs
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