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Valentine Art Project with Sharpies

Mix the amazing pigment of Sharpies on a stretched canvas for a Valentine art project that is as rich, and colorful (and inexpensive!) as can be.

valentine art project

This one involves mounting the drawings on to a stretched canvas. Change the size of the canvas to accommodate all your students, and you also have a very pretty collaborative fundraiser project.

This is a technique I experimented with for years at my elementary school. Students draw with Sharpies on something called “dry wax paper”. You can find it in restaurant supply stores, or on Amazon. (Note: The previous is a referral link. If you click through and take action, I’ll be compensated.) Each drawing is decoupaged with watery white glue to a stretched canvas. When the wet tissue dries, it kind of hugs the canvas.

In the end, it looks like students drew directly on the canvas, which is the goal, but not practical for many reasons, in real life. Here are the steps.

MATERIALS

*The above product links are referrals. If you click through and take action, I’ll be compensated a small amount, at no extra expense to you.

DIRECTIONS

Time needed: 2 hours.

How to Make Sharpie Hearts

  1. Lightly draw grid lines on canvas.

  2. Color heart on dry wax paper with Sharpies.

  3. Repeat, trim out each, and arrange in a pleasing way.

  4. Apply each heart to canvas with watery white glue (50/50 ratio). Be sure to saturate.

  5. Repeat to finish the rows. Overlapping is fine to help them fit.

  6. Repeat until finish. For a shine, spray with gloss finish when dry.

    valentine art projects

DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Buy a canvas that can accommodate the total number of drawings your students will be making. Allow for a roughly 3″ x 4″ rectangle for each. Use a pencil to draw a light grid.
  2. Give students a piece of dry wax tissue that has a matching rectangle drawn on it. Their job is to make a heart using several colors on the inside, and several colors in the background. Choose your color lesson as desired, just make sure that everything is filled in. No white spaces. If your budget allows, Sharpie Brush markers are a dream to color with.
  3. Trim off any excess paper around the hearts. Make a layout plan that looks pleasing to you.
  4. Mix white glue to water, about a 50/50 ratio. To make sure the art is really saturated, apply first to the canvas, then the back of the drawing. Place the drawing on the canvas, and add more mixture on top. Smooth with your fingers.
  5. Continue applying the drawings. Don’t worry if they overlap a bit, the sketchy look is very forgiving. When you are done, check the art closely to see if there are any bubbles. If so, smooth with your fingers. Don’t worry about little wet wrinkles. They will disappear as the tissue dries.
  6. When the canvas is dry, you can spray with a glossy fixative to give it an extra shine. Now you know how to make large collaborative works of art with just a few inexpensive supplies. Enjoy!

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