Handprint Owl Painting Activity

3.3 based on 42 ratings
Updated on Oct 22, 2014

Make an owl painting with your child to get ready for Halloween! First your kid will create an adorable autumn scene by painting a watercolor background, and then she'll add a layer of tempera paint. Handprint owls lend a personal touch to the artwork. This owl painting is a wonderful way to introduce your child to the technique of layering images, and the process will help her begin to understand the interesting visual effects layering produces.

What You Need:

  • Watercolor paper
  • Watercolors
  • Water
  • Paintbrushes
  • Tempera paint
  • Pencil

What You Do:

  1. Ask your child to paint water all over the watercolor paper using a brush. It should be wet, but not soaked with water.
  2. While the paper is wet, ask her to paint the background using watercolors to create the autumn sky. Let it dry completely.
  3. Have her use the pencil to draw a moon and the branches of her tree.
  4. Encourage her to paint in the moon using watered-down, white tempera paint. If she wants a stronger-looking moon, she can just use pure, undiluted tempera.
  5. Ask her to paint two branches using the tempera paint. Let it dry.
  6. Help your child paint one of her hands with brown tempera paint and press it down on the paper. Turn the painting upside down so the top portion is facing your child; this will make positioning the handprints much easier. Ideally, her fingers should be positioned so the palm of her hand is right above a branch.
  7. Repeat step 6 with the opposite hand on a different branch. Allow the owl bodies to dry.
  8. Have her paint in her owls' eyes, and their beaks.
  9. Hang up the owl picture in celebration of autumn!