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Valentine Art Project with Sharpies

Valentine art projects that mix the rich color of Sharpies with hearts, pretty much can’t go wrong, if you ask me.

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 in real life. Here are the steps.

  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. (That is an Amazon referral link too.)


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.

valentine art projects

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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