Nothing says Christmas like angels, reindeer and peace doves. Today I’m sharing an eye-catching Christmas handprint art idea which incorporates all three of these as well as a fun and easy process art technique.
We’re big fans of liquid watercolours in our house. The girls adore doing “experiments” (aka. making a huge mess) with them, and we also use them in place of food colouring when making slime or similar because they don’t stain clothing, furniture and fingers anywhere near as much.
Our Christmas handprint art idea uses a fun process art technique with liquid watercolour and salt, and then finishes it off with Christmas-themed silhouette cutouts incorporating personalised handprint shapes. The salt creates a gorgeous, Wintery, crystallised effect on the watercolours which makes a fantastic backdrop for the silhouette cutouts.
Younger kids will have no problems doing the art all by themselves. When it comes to the shapes, some kids might find them a bit intricate and fiddly and could need help with the cutting. Older kids will have no problems at all, and will enjoy the experimental art process as much as the little kids.
How to create Silhouette handprint art
You will need:
• Paper (I’ve used A3 size). Either watercolour paper or heavy cartridge paper will work, but know that when using watercolour paints watercolour paper is the best choice because it won’t warp, crinkle and go out of shape when wet
• Liquid watercolour
• Salt (any salt is fine but I use granulated sea salt)
• Sponge paintbrush or a thick bristle brush
• Glue stick
• Painters tape (masking tape)
• This Silhouette handprint template (available from both our Super Fun Printables store and our TPT store)
How to create the liquid watercolour process art
To begin with, you need to tape your sheet of paper to the table. This is where it stays until completely dry, the taping down will help to stop any paper warping and will also give a clean white border around your artwork.
Pant your paper first with water all over. We are going to use the “Wet on wet” watercolour technique.
Add the liquid watercolour in a gradient blend. I’ve used twilight sky colours, but you can use any colours you like.
Whilst the paint is still wet, sprinkle liberally with salt. Leave the salt in place until the paper is dry.
Once dry you will have a gorgeous textured effect. Carefully peel the masking tape away, revealing the clean white border.
Take the paper outside and shake off the salt, gently scraping it away.
Adding the Silhouette shape
Cut your desired shape out of paper. If you want to create a black silhouette trace the shape onto black paper.
Next take a sheet of plain paper the same colour as your silhouette and fold in half. Place your hand on top of it and trace around it, then cut out whilst the paper is folded in half so you are left with two hand shapes. If they are joined in the middle you’ll need to cut them in half. Note, for the peace dove you will only need one handprint shape, but for the reindeer and angel you will need two.
Arrange the hand shapes onto the arty background so they work to create either the angel, reindeer or peace dove. Glue into place with a glue stick and…
Tadaa! Your gorgeous Christmas handprint artwork is now ready to hang.
If you want to change things up a bit, try using a different process art idea for the background. You could try crayon blending, acrylic paint blending, bubble painting, toothbrush splatter “snow” painting or whatever you can think of!
More Printable Christmas ideas
• Make Christmas ornaments in the shape of trees, stars, houses, doves and more with our Christmas Paper Crafts Ebook!
• These paper reindeer are so cute!
• Here are 24 printable Fascinating Christmas facts – use them in crackers or as lunch box notes for the kids!
• Inspire the kids to get creative with these printable Christmas drawing prompts
• Here are some printable Santa and Reindeer baskets – so fun!