My two year old is really into painting at the moment. It's one of those messy play activities that I know is good fun for him but one that I slightly dread. After some liberal sloshing around of paint both on paper and all over him (maximum coverage is his style of choice), I'm usually left with lots of brightly coloured 'pictures' and a big mess to clean up. The ones that have had all the colours mixed together and a brown sludge usually end up in the bin but as a proud mummy I can't quite bring myself to throw out his little works of art. I've now built up quite a collection and there's only so many that can be stuck to the fridge with magnets.
Here are a few things I've done with his artwork. Before you start, my top tip is to use one colour of different shades or complementary colours to avoid the brown mud look.
1. Frame It My sister and I had lots of fun with our toddlers one sunny afternoon. We squirted blue and white paint on a breakfast cereal packet and our kids then dipped their hands in and printed on various pieces of paper. The resulting piece of cardboard was a beautiful swirl of colour but nothing special. However, once framed it made an unusual piece of modern art that my son was proud to give his Daddy for Father's Day and is now hung on our kitchen wall.
4. Double Up Once you get going on the cards, you soon get used to having a stack of cards for any occassion but grandparents probably appreciate something that looks a little different each time. My son usually has a liberal amount of paint on his hands, brushes and the card we're painting. I started trying to mop up the paint by using a blank one pressed over the top of ones with very thick paint. Once peeled back it makes a different style of pattern.
Just make sure you put down some plastic sheets, cover up well and you can have lots of fun too. The hard part will be deciding what to keep and what to give away. I'd love to hear any suggestions for other creative ideas to do with toddler art, just leave a note in the comments section.