This is a super fun painting activity! We had so much fun that the kids wanted to do it twice. I love Van Gogh, he is one of my favorite artists. His paintings are filled with movement, texture and bright bold colors.
Your kids will love to paint like Van Gogh using forks. Kids of all ages will have fun with this one, the younger ones will treat this as more of a process art activity(like my four-year-old did) but the results will still be awesome! If you are looking for more art projects, check out my collection of fun and creative painting ideas for kids.
We love to learn about famous artists and get inspired to create art projects in the same style. Take a look at this super easy Jackson Pollock inspired splatter painting and these gorgeous chalk pastel poppies inspired by Georgia O’Keefe!
Learn more about Vincent van Gogh
We started by reading the book “Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Artists: Vincent Van Gogh”. I love this series because it teaches kids about artists in a really relatable way with fun cartoon drawings and lots of pictures. The books are easy to read and holds kids attention.
My kids really liked learning a bit about Van Gogh’s life and the types of pictures that he painted. We looked more closely at his Starry Night painting and how the brushstrokes made the sky seem to move and come alive.
I made a van Gogh printable study pack for kids to learn more about van Gogh’s life and art! This easy to use printable pack contains a biography about van Gogh’s life and art, a writing response sheet, drawing prompts, coloring sheet, and more!
Van Gogh really made his paintings come alive with movement. He achieved this with the use of color, his type of brushstrokes and using very thick paint, sometimes even squeezing the paint right onto his canvas from a tube. This technique is called impasto.
Create your own Van Gogh fork painting
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- White cardstock or scrapbook paper
- Acrylic paint
- Paint trays or paint palette
- Pencil and eraser
- Painter’s tape and wooden board (optional)
Instructions for your fork painting
1. First get your paper ready. You can tape the paper down to a wooden board or the table. This helps keep the paper from sliding around and also gives it a nice frame when it’s finished. This is an optional step.
2. Draw out your painting in pencil. We did hills, a cypress tree, a moon, and then a few circles for the stars. You want to keep it simple for the best results.
3. Start painting using one color at a time. Remind kids to put the paint on fairly thick. This will help when it’s time to use a fork.
4. Once you have painted part of your painting, you can start to use the forks. Drag a fork through the paint to create different lines.
It’s fun to try out different ways that the forks can make patterns in the paper. Straight lines, short wavy lines, long curvy lines, let kids have fun and explore this process!
We moved back and forth between laying on thick paint and using the forks to create our movement.
If your paint is drying fast, then you will want to paint just a few brushstrokes at a time to ensure that the fork can create the texture in the wet paint.
Let everything dry flat. If you used painter’s tape, carefully remove it.
This project was super fun and engaging! Van Gogh’s Sunflowers would also be a great painting to try with this technique.
Painting any subject using forks adds a whole new dimension and really lends a unique quality to any painting project.
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