Oh process art fans, do I have a fab spring surprise for you…! This one comes courtesy of two of my favorite art friends, and if you’re not already following Joanna from The Blue Barn and Julie Curtin, you’re missing some AMAZING inspiration. These two masters-of-craft surprise me every day with their skill at turning everyday objects into amazingly attainable masterpieces, and let me show you why….
Using Joanna’s directions for Cottontail Rabbits (three cheers for cotton balls!) and Julie’s paper plate flower instructions, we filled an afternoon with fun process art exploration to create these lovely spring works of art that knocked everyone’s socks off! For additional art exploration, we threw in our own twist – adding folk art details using cut paper and a glue resist method.
These folk-art-ish bunnies were such a fun & easy way to sneak in SO many valuable art lessons. You can make them as simple or complex as you’d like by incorporating more colors or details – the joy is in the process and exploration. And once you’ve completed these, stop by our new Alexander Calder-inspired spring sculptures for another awesomely fun art DIY!
To make your own folk art bunnies you’ll need:
Note: We prefer to shop locally or use what we have at home, but this list contains a few Amazon affiliate links for reference. As Amazon Associates we make a small commission on qualifying purchases.*
- White card stock or cardboard – a cereal box side works well (1 piece per bunny)
- Paper plates (we used 2)
- Our printable Folk Art Bunny Template PDF
- Paint (I used acrylic, but you could use tempera or similar)
- A large foam brush
- Construction paper (We used small pieces of black and yellow)
- A hot glue gun or craft glue and a glue stick (this dual temp hot glue gun is the one I use with kids because it can be switched to low heat)
- Small cardboard tubes – we used them to add paint texture to our flowers
- Try a paint resist folk art bunny using watercolors, rubber cement a small paint brush and good eraser
- Instead of cut paper or glue resist, you can use paint markers to add your folk art details
DIY Folk Art Bunny Instructions:
- Draw or trace our template on to a piece of cardstock
Start by drawing your own bunny outline, finding a silhouette you like, or downloading and printing our Folk Art Bunny Template PDF onto white cardstock. You can also trace or print your bunny onto a cereal box side, cardboard or something similar instead.
- Use cardboard tube rolls, sponges or other painting tools to paint a paper plate
To prep for your flowers, paint both sides of a paper plate with acrylic, tempera or similar paint. You can add some fun layers of texture and color to your flowers by stamping with cardboard tube rolls, sponges or other painting tools. Once you’ve finished, set aside to let dry while you paint your bunnies.
- Paint your bunny template
Joanna from The Blue Barn came up with the MOST fun technique for spring painting with kids. For ALL the details and a fun way to present this art invitation to kids, visit Joanna’s cottontail rabbit art directions here. This is such an easy way to make spring-y paintings, and so incredibly fun!
- Form flowers from your paper plate
Once your bunny has been painted, it’s time to make your flowers! Visit Julie’s simple paper plate flower tutorial here (and ooh and ahhh over the gorgeous Water Lilies she made!). I want to add paper plate flowers to everything now.
- Add a tail
A bunny just wouldn’t be complete without a cotton ball tail, right? Use craft glue or a hot glue gun to add it.
- Add folk art details with construction paper
Time to add some folk art-inspired details! We cut construction paper into simple foliage shapes and curved lines, then added a circle for an eye. Layout your pieces to create a composition you like, then glue down with a glue stick.
We were so in love with our folk art bunny we decided to create a second and had a BLAST experimenting with the processes used to create them!
For our second bunny, we thought we’d try something a little different for creating the folk art decoration, and decided on glue resist. For this technique, the process is almost exactly the same – we just add one very important step at the beginning. For glue resist, after you’ve cut your bunny shape out, use a small brush and rubber cement to paint on your folk art details. Let dry, then start painting over everything with your cotton ball as we did for the last bunny. When your paint has dried, use a good eraser (just something other than a pencil-top eraser – we used one of those block gum erasers).
Note: Instead of using acrylic paint, this technique will be much easier to do with watercolors. You can still add colors with cotton balls, but you can also try making brush washes instead. We used thinned acrylic paint on ours, and though it turned out fine in the end, it was REALLY difficult to get the rubber cement off and we had to peel lots of little bits off with our fingers. Watercolors work GREAT, are so easy and would be a fun way to mix in another art medium!
Hungry for more spring-themed process art? These melted crayon butterflies are an awesomely fun way to recycle old crayon bits into lovely, fluttering works of art! For a trip to the great outdoors, head outside to gather some real flowers to create hammered nature process art. Or delve into the wonderful world of mixed media art-making with a primer on simple techniques and tools that will help your kids get the most of the experience!
*A note about Amazon affiliate links: We strive to use simple, earth-friendly supplies that can be purchased locally whenever we can, but sometimes we find the best universally available options, a rare eco-friendly find, or a niche product only available on Amazon. When included in our supply list, these products are affiliate links, and if you click-through to make a purchase, we receive a small commission that helps us re-order these supplies!