Dragonfly squish art is a fun Spring or Summer art project for kids. Use our printable template to turn process squish art into colourful dragonflies to hang on the wall or bulletin board.
This art idea is also a great way to support kids learning about insects or minibeasts.
Most of us are familiar with squish art. It’s a process art technique where you put a generous amount of paint on one half of the page then fold it over to press the design onto the other half.
Maybe you call it ‘butterfly painting’ because of the symmetrical process used to create it—we even have a butterfly spin on this project too.
Squish art needs to be done quickly, before the paint dries to get the best, most vibrant print possible.
When making these dragonflies, I’ve used round sponge brushes to apply the paint. They’re great because you can dab the paint on fast and thick and they leave a nice circular pattern which goes well with dragonflies.
Print your dragonfly wings and eyes direct to white card stock and use the reverse side of that for the squish painting as I have. Alternatively, use the half-wing and eye shapes as a template to trace around squish art created on heavy art paper. Using regular thin copy paper for your squish painting is not recommended.
Print the body shape template direct to coloured card stock for best results. Each template makes two dragonflies. There is also a ‘class set’ of body shapes to conserve paper, fitting five bodies to one page.
How to make squish art dragonflies
You will need
- Card stock in white plus an alternate colour for the body
- Paint (acrylic, poster paint, or regular kids paint)
- Glue stick
- Round sponge brushes (or use pieces of kitchen sponge cut into circle shapes)
- Thin paint brush OR white oil pastel
- The dragonfly template – also available in our TPT store
Print the wing and eye shapes to white card stock and the dragonfly body shapes to coloured card stock.
Fold the wing and eye template in half, then unfold and turn over to the reverse side so you are painting on the back of the template.
Use your sponge brushes to decorate one half of the page with a mix of 2-3 colours.
Fold over, press gently all over, then unfold. Your design will have printed onto the second side of the paper. Allow to dry.
Once dry, Fold in half again and cut around the eye and dragonfly wing shapes. Cut the body shapes out.
Glue the eyes and wings onto the body.
Use a fine brush to paint white stripes across the dragonfly’s abdomen, or for a less messy alternative you could draw lines with oil pastel.
Hang your dragonflies on the wall with blu-tack to decorate for Summer.
More insect craft ideas
- Make a realistic 3D paper dragonfly using our printable template
- These 3D cube bugs come in four different designs
- 3D paper doodlebugs look so cool when finished
- We also have 3D paper spiders incorporating doodle art