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This fun Art for Kids Activity is perfect for birthday parties, classrooms, and large groups! Use vinyl stickers to create a negative-space silhouette painting of your child’s name or other graphics! Quick, easy, and inexpensive! 

name paintings kids art craft project This post contains affiliate links. I will be compensated when a purchase is made through these links.

One of my favorite art activities to do with children is silhouette painting because it doesn’t require a ton of prep work, and there’s no need for a lengthy lesson or technique explanation. This quick and easy kids art project is a fantastic way to teach children about negative space and masking! Because this lesson is so simple and inexpensive (and the results are so incredible!), it’s a great activity for large groups such as birthday parties, art classes, Scouts, and more!

Art for Kids: Silhouette Painting

What You’ll Need:

heidi and simon name on blank white canvases Start by applying your vinyl name or graphic (or alphabet stickers) to the canvas. If using transfer tape, I have found that the paper-type transfer tape works best when working with canvas. Use a scraper or the edge of a plastic card to press the letters down into the canvas as much as possible.

Because the canvas is textured, which lends itself to a little bit of paint bleed underneath the edges of the letters, I highly recommend sealing the letters with a quick coat of Mod Podge to help keep the edges crisp and clean.

no sealing with sealing example You can really see the difference that a quick coat of sealer makes in the crispness of the letters and shapes!

no sealing with sealing example up closeAgain, this step is totally optional, but highly recommended! Allow the Mod Podge to dry fully before painting (this doesn’t take very long!).

kids painting their own name craft project Using acrylic or tempera paint, cover the entire canvas including the name.

peeled vinyl off of name painting to reveal white name on painted backgroundWhile the paint is still wet, carefully peel up the letters (this part usually requires some adult assistance for younger children!). Tweezers and/or the flat edge of an X-acto knife (for adults) make easy work of removing the letters. Do NOT allow the paint to dry completely before peeling the letters or you may run the risk of peeling up the paint with the letters.

name painting kids art project Isn’t that fun?! I love the bold contrast between the negative space and the colorful paint!

name painting art project for adult supplies Another fun technique that you can try is silhouette painting with plastic wrap!

name \"heidi\" with splatter paint over vinyl black letters of name onto white canvasDrizzle and drop a generous amount of paint on top of the canvas, and then cover it with a sheet of plastic wrap.

even more splatter paint added onto art projectUse your hands and/or a plastic card to push the paint around the plastic wrap until the entire canvas is covered.

splatter paint dry and ready for vinyl removalCarefully peel up the plastic wrap to reveal a marbled swirl of colors!

vinyl pealed to reveal white name \"Heidi\" in splatter paint This plastic painting technique is generally less messy than traditional painting (just make sure you cover the work surface underneath!), and it is especially great when working with a large group of children all at once since it doesn’t require brushes or water.

name paintings kids art craft project There are SO many different combinations of fonts, graphics, colors, styles, and techniques that you’ll never grow bored of this fun kids art activity! Each piece from every single artist will be completely original and unique!

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  1. How do you seal with the modge podge? Do you just paint it on over the name? If it gets on the canvas (not just the vinyl name) you can still paint over it?

    1. Yes! Just paint right over the top of everything, canvas and all, with the Mod Podge and then allow that to dry. Then, paint over it with your paint of choice. 🙂

  2. Thanks for this great post. I was wanting to do this as a fun activity and party favour for my son’s upcoming birthday party, but wasn’t sure how to manage it if parents weren’t keen on their kids getting paint on themselves. I have some disposable art aprons but now that I know of the cling film option, I can give them the option! Great tip about sealing the edges with Mod Podge also as I wondered how much it might bleed otherwise. Looking forward to checking out your other posts. Looks like there are a lot of great ideas on here. 🙂

  3. Very nice website if u can make an app i would give it 5 stars ! keep up the good work ALSO try including some clay crafts !