Mini Monets and Mommies: Valentine's Day Water Color Heart Art for Kids

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Valentine's Day Water Color Heart Art for Kids

So, you’re looking for a Valentine’s Day art activity? You want something that’s not too tricky for the kids to try (maybe you aren’t crafty yourself, and don’t feel completely comfortable with a project that requires a hefty dose of artsy know-how), but is still engaging, interesting and even a learning experience. I hear you. And, that’s why we tried this holiday water color paint resist exploration.

Paint project

After stocking up on petroleum jelly for a few DIY lip balm projects, I realized that I still had quite a stash leftover. What to do? Use it for a painted heart negative space art activity! Last Valentine’s Day we did a similar project using paper, glue and glitter. This one lets your little artist explore colors, paint and a bit of science.

Before beginning, invite your child to feel the petroleum jelly. Ask her to tell you what she thinks will happen when she splashes the jelly with the water color paint (have her make a prediction – even if it isn’t technically ‘right’, the idea is for your child to explore, experiment and figure out what happens for herself).
Children's art

Here’s What You’ll Need:

·        White or light-colored card stock paper (or water color paper)

·        Valentine’s Day colors of water colors or tempera paint

·        Water

·        A paintbrush

·        Petroleum jelly

·        A paper towel

Here’s What to Do:

1. Finger paint a heart on the paper with the petroleum jelly. Really let your child layer it on, making this a sensory experience.
Petroleum jelly

2. Optional: Mix your own water colors. If you don’t have ready-made water color paint on hand, you can use those little last bits of tempera instead. I had barely enough red and pink to use for anything. I scooped it out into a small-sized paper cup, added a few tablespoons of water and mixed.
Tempera Paint

3. Paint over and around the heart. Ask your child why she thinks the water color paint isn’t sticking to the heart (a few drops may, but most won’t). Keep wiping the brush. As it drags over the heart, it will collect the jelly. This may make it tricky for the rest of the paint to stick to the paper (if your child is spreading the jelly around).
Heart paint

4. Let the paint dry for about half an hour.

5. Wipe the jelly off of the paper with a paper towel.
Kids' paint

Are you looking for more Valentine’s art activities? Follow my Pinterest board for ideas!
Follow Mini Monets and Mommies's board Valentine's Day Activities for Kids on Pinterest.


  1. Such a great idea to use petroleum jelly to create the heart outline. Definitely an art and science activity in one. Thanks for sharing on Toddler Fun Friday :)

  2. This is absolutely amazing! I am an adult and had no idea to create negative spaced art with petroleum jelly. Thank you for sharing this on the #ThoughtfulSpot this week :).

  3. What a beautiful Valentine craft. I love how it allows kids to enjoy the process while still producing such a lovely result. Thanks for sharing with Everything Kids!

  4. What a beautiful Valentine craft. I love how it allows kids to enjoy the process while still producing such a lovely result. Thanks for sharing with Everything Kids!

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