I picked up a 2 pack of stretched canvases on sale at AC Moore recently and brought them out when the kids were asking to paint earlier this week. They enjoy painting on something more substantial and a bit more "special" than paper. I've noticed that they usually slow down and paint more deliberately when using a canvas.
And I love how the canvas paintings look hanging on the wall!
We don't use canvases a whole lot, both because of the price and because of storage issues (It's a lot easier to store a hundred pieces of paper than 100 canvases!). But I do like to make sure to give the kids a chance to paint on canvases of different sizes every once in a while.
They make great gifts, too!
I set out Autumn colors at Maia's request —red, orange, burgandy, yellow, gold, brown, etc. And then she and Daphne asked for more colors, so we pretty much ended up with all the colors of the rainbow, and then some.
We used BioColor paints this time. I've found that tempera paints often dry a little chalky on the canvases. Acrylics look awesome, but are not so great for the little kiddos (although one of Maia's very first paintings at 14 months old was acrylic on canvas).
We've been using our BioColors more and more lately. I don't know what's in them that makes them different from tempera (perhaps something I should look into...), but I like the combination of their shininess (is that a word?), vibrant colors, ease of use, and how they adhere well to most surfaces.
Here's Daphne's painting as she was just getting started. I love it!
She worked on this painting for a long time, covering every inch of the surface with layers and layers of paint. The finished result (which I haven't photographed yet) is a dark mix of blues and purples.
I have to fight the urge to take the painting away at the point where *I* think it's beautiful and perfect and instead let her continue to work on it until she's satisfied with it (which often seems to be when it's a muddy mix of every color).
Maia is painting a rainbow (still a frequent theme for her) in this photo on a piece of foamcore. She had finished her canvas and really wanted another, which I didn't have, but settled for the foamcore that I happened to have on hand.
So that was our afternoon painting session...
Do you ever buy canvases for your kids to paint? Do you feel like they work on them differently than when they paint on paper?
By the way, if you're concerned about the price, you can often use a coupon at the big arts and crafts chains. We have both an AC Moore and a Michaels where I live and both of them regularly have 40-50% off coupons that you can use on one item. For AC Moore, you can go to their store locator page, enter your zip code, and once it shows you the closest store, it gives you the option of printing out a coupon to use. I do that every time I go.
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