This 4th of July chalk pastel art is such a fun and easy project that kids of all ages will love to do! I love using this chalk pastel technique, the results are always stunning. Using black paper makes the colors really pop!
Pastels are so fun for kids to explore! Take a look at my collection of chalk pastel art for more creative ideas kids will love.
For this project, I created printable star templates to make this craft even easier. These templates are available in my shop as part of my 4th of July art project bundle that includes two different art activities. You can also make your own star templates if you like.
Create your own 4th of July Chalk Pastel Art
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- Star printable templates available in my shop (optional)
- Black pastel paper or black cardstock
- Chalk pastels in red, white and blue
- Paper towels
- Painter’s tape
Instructions to create your chalk pastel painting
1. First, you need to print out your star templates or draw your own. I’ve included templates to create your chalk pastel art with 3 different stars on one piece of paper and also to make a picture with one big star in my 4th of July art project bundle.
Printing your star templates onto white cardstock makes the templates sturdier and easier for kids to use.
2. Cut out your stars and arrange them on black paper. I like to use painter’s tape to stick them down, this makes it a lot easier for kids.
If you do not have pastel paper you can use black drawing paper or construction paper.
Related: 4th of July Printable Wand Craft
3. Using red, white, and blue chalk pastels, draw around the edges of your star templates. In order for the smudging to work best, you need to draw fairly thick lines around your stars.
Kids can choose to alternate colors, do color around each star in one color, there is no wrong way. Just have fun and use your creativity!
4. Once kids have drawn around their stars, it’s time to smudge. This is always a fun part!
My favorite way to do this is simply to use my fingers. I find this gives the best results. But not everyone likes getting messy and the way the chalk feels on their fingers.
So kids can also try using a cotton ball, a q-tip (although this would take a lot longer), or a blending stick. You can even use some paper towels in a pinch!
Start at the template and smudge in an outward direction going all the way around. This can be a messy technique, so make sure to have lots of paper towels on hand.
5. Slowly lift off your template to reveal your amazing design!
You might find that there is some chalk dust underneath your templates. If you want to clean up the edges a bit, you can wipe them off with a Q-tip or an eraser.
To get the dust off your paper without getting chalk dust everywhere, take your artwork outside and gently blow off the excess.
6. To finish off your artwork, you can spray your pastel drawing with a workable fixative as an optional step. This should be done by an adult only, preferably outside in a well-ventilated area.
Tips for working with chalk pastels
Chalk pastels can be messy (but so fun!). There are a few things you can do to help keep some of the mess contained:
- Put newspaper down on desks or tables
- Put your project on a tray or a shallow cardboard box which will keep most of the mess inside the tray
- You can try doing your project outside
- Have lots of paper towels handy
- Once you are done with your project (or even halfway through if it gets really dusty), take it outside to gently blow or shake off the excess dust
- If you are using chalk pastels in the classroom and the kids are ready to take their artwork home, simply place the art between some newspaper to keep it from smudging and for easy transport.
I love how bright and bold this 4th of July chalk pastel project turned out! It’s such an easy pastel technique that always gets wow results and that kids always love doing.
Vertical PDFs of each project that is perfect for printing out and projecting onto a whiteboard in the classroom for kids to follow along! Each PDF includes a lesson plan overview, materials needed, step-by-step instructions and photos, and a printable template.
We love creating and exploring with different art supplies and techniques. If you are looking for more art projects to try, take a look at our ultimate collection of amazing art projects for kids!
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