Mini Monets and Mommies: Jackson Pollock Inspired Art: Kids' Cupcake Activity

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Jackson Pollock Inspired Art: Kids' Cupcake Activity

Cupcakes as famous artist kids' art activities? Last week I made Impressionist art cupcakes, and they were so much fun that I wanted to try another artist/style. Sure, paper (or an actual canvas) can make an excellent canvas for your kids’ art activities, but isn’t frosting much tastier?

Jackson Pollock
As I’ve said before, I’m not the world’s best baker. I’m not even the world’s most sort-of kind-of ok-ist baker. Not by a long shot. When my son comes home from the neighbor’s house he often says, “Why can’t you bake things not from a box like his mom does?” I’ve tried. And, I’ve failed. So, instead of detailing my own super-sweet batter and frosting recipes, the how-to focuses more on the art-making part. If you’re a baker (or at least don’t have to call on your BFF Betty Crocker for help) go ahead and leave a link to your favorite recipe in the comments section. For this activity I used the box mix and a ready-made can of frosting.

This cupcake/art-making adventure is a tribute to the abstract expressionist painter Jackson Pollock. I’ve made Pollock-inspired paint projects more times than I can remember, and the kids always enjoy the messy abstract paint-flinging fun. This time instead of using actual paints, we’re going to swap out the temperas for frosting and food coloring.

What You’ll Need:

·         White or light-colored cupcake batter mix or a recipe

·         White frosting (or made from your own recipe)

·         Food coloring

·         Cupcake baking tin and liners

·         Plastic straws

·         Spoons

·         Colorful sprinkles

What You’ll Need To Do:

1.      Whip up your cupcake batter. This offers an opportunity for your little one to put her math skills to the test and make measurements or help you to read the numbers on the side of the measuring cup.

2.      Drip a few drops of food coloring (Pollock-style) into the batter. I added a few blue, green, yellow and red (yes, I know that the red looks a bit like a crime scene) drops and the slightly blended it to get a rainbow type of streaky look.

Kids' cooking

3.      Pour the batter into the lined tins and bake it (don’t allow your child to go near the oven).

4.      Prepare the frosting as the cakes bake. You have two options when it comes to decorating: 1. Drip food coloring on as if it was the paint itself, or 2. Drip colored frosting on. Either way – it’s going to get messy. If you want to drip colored frosting (it’s not quite as much fun, but somewhat neater), you’ll need to mix in the food coloring. I used an extra baking tin, making each cup a different color.

Cupcake baking
5.      After the cupcakes bake and fully cool, create a canvas for the artwork with the white frosting.

Art activity
6.      If you’re going the dye drip route, pour each color onto a paper plate or in the bottom of a reused cupcake tin. Use a straw to pick up the color and either gently blow or drip it onto the frosting canvas. You can also use a clean, never-before-used thin brush.

Paint art
Dessert recipe

7.      If you’re using colored frosting, repeat the dripping process. I used straws (one for each color) to drip the frosting on. Your child may need to slightly brush or push the frosting on.

Colorful cakes
8.      Add another layer of texture to your Pollock pain cupcakes and use sprinkles to create extra dots or speckles of color.

Children's cooking
Follow Erica Loop's board Famous Artist Kids' Activities on Pinterest.


  1. My kiddos would love this! So colourful :)
    Thanks so much for linking up at "Share Your Stuff Tuesdays"! Please come & link back next week. (Rachael @

  2. My girls would have so much fun making colorful cupcakes. Thanks for sharing this on Merry Monday. Pinned.

  3. what a fun way to study a famous artist! Thanks for linking up with The Thoughtful Spot!

  4. I really like your writing style, good information, appreciate it for posting : D.
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