Outdoor Art: Splatter Painting

English: Action painting - own work. Somewhat ...

Allow your child to channel their inner Jackson Pollock with this fun, messy painting activity.  This art is made to be done outside, as no sane parent would allow it to take place in the house!


  • Tempera paint
  • Containers for paint (plastic cups, recycled jars, etc)
  • Large paint brushes
  • Masking tape
  • Large plastic sheet, tarp, or old shower curtain
  • Large paper – at least 17″ x 20″ (cut from inexpensive rolls found at Ikea are perfect, or Melissa & Doug Easel Paper)
  • Clothing for your child that you don’t care about – expect clothing to become splattered with paint!

Set Up:

  1. Lay the plastic sheet on the ground in your backyard
  2. Lay the paper out on the middle of the plastic sheet and tape the paper to the plastic sheet
  3. Pour different colors of paint into different containers
  4. Lay out paint brush(es)


  1. Allow your child(ren) to dip their paint brushes in the paint color of their choice and fling the paint onto the paper.
  2. Re-dip the paintbrush into any color paint and continue flinging paint onto the paper as they wish.
  3. Alternative (less messy option):  Instead of flinging the paint onto the paper, another option is to drip or drizzle the paint from the brush onto the paper.
  4. Allow the child(ren) to experiment and explore, without any concern for the final product.
  5. When painting is complete, remove from plastic sheet and place somewhere to dry.

Have fun!!


  1. Lee Anne says:

    This sounds fabulous! I need to start collecting real art supplies, like paints and big brushes. (I’ve been skirting by on little water color paints so far.) Stuff for this project sounds like the perfect place for me to start. It’ll be great to get outside in this beautiful spring weather.


    1. A Nature Mom says:

      Hi Lee Anne – We have a big bin full of art supplies… finger paints, tempera paints, water colors, small cups for actual painting, different sized paint brushes (super wide ones are great), sponges in different sizes and textures, different sizes and types of papers, glitter, glue, paste, clay, smock and old clothes for wearing during art activities, old sheet to protect the floor during art, etc. We’re ready for whatever type of art C might want to do that day. Our Melissa & Doug easel is always set up in his room, with dry-erase board and chalk board, so he can do either of those whenever he feels like it without my help. I keep the art bin under his easel for easy access.


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