Se7en’s Painting A Day… The Journey…

Last month we began a series of “Project A Day” ideas… in the first month we planned to draw every day… it turned out to be quite a challenge and well worth the effort that we put into it. For the past month we tried Painting everyday. While our drawing everyday project was very much a try and draw something different everyday kind of project…


Our painting a day projects was all about trying out new things to do with watercolour paints. Nothing huge and awesome… just making sure that all my kids have sprinkled salt on a painting, all my kids have tried and enjoyed blow painting and wax resist… And all of us have enjoyed making stained glass windows with watercolour paints.


It was a great project and while the idea was to spend fifteen minutes of our time doing something creative… there were a lot of other lessons for us to learn at the same time…


Se7en + 1 Things we learnt from the painting a day project:

  1. Painting is Painting: Drawing and Painting are two very different things!!! I know… you are saying surely you knew that, and I did!!! But I really thought fifteen minutes of painting would be just that… turns out drawing was something that we could wind down the day with before dinner, but painting was something we all wanted to start the day with. No-one was willing to wait until the end of the day for this.
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  3. For fun Rather than Completeness: We didn’t get round to it every day – and that was okay. Some kids were away for a couple of days and were surprised to just join in where everyone was in the project and that was fine… but they are so used to going back and catching up things they might have missed for school, that I think it was a good lesson – to just let some things go!!!
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  5. Watercolours are for Everyday Ideas: After a month of using their watercolours my kids are finally totally and absolutely comfortable with just using them for fun. Our paint boxes are always out on our kitchen counter and my kids can and do use them whenever they like. It wasn’t something they just did before, it was more to add something to their school notebooks or to decorate a book review. Before, they would all rather just sit and draw, whereas now they are quite keen to spontaneously just take their paints out and create a picture that they might have in their heads.
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  7. It isn’t About the Results: Some of my kids have always been far more interested with what goes on in the paintbox while they were painting than actually getting paint on the paper and creating a picture – in fact often the paint never actually reached the paper!!! Because we weren’t painting something that we were looking at but rather learning what we could do with our paints we may have got passed that!!! Not that I mind at all, some kids like to wander around their paintbox and see how much water they can mix into a colour, what happens if you leave it soaking, or sponge it dry – whatever… don’t worry if you never get an actual picture from engaging with paints in a paintbox… your kids will be learning lots about the feel of paint and mixing and colours and all the while having a heap of fun doing it… leave them to it!!!
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  9. Painting is so lovely that you can spend all day on it: While all the projects could easily be done in fifteen minutes – we very often spent much longer than that!!! You need to have something fun planned for immediately afterwards – a snack or a game outside or something… because otherwise you will find yourselves happily whiling away entire days on painting… not a problem if you have nothing else to do – but I am guessing that you probably do have something else to do!!!
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  11. A Little a Day Quickly Adds Up: A little art quickly becomes a lot of art if you just work at it every day… none of us would have guessed at the pile of artworks we created in such a short space of time – just another lesson on how every little bit adds up and never be afraid if you just work on a a project a tiny little bit at a time!!!
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  13. Cleaning Up is Part of the Fun: All my kids have learnt to take out their paints, establish their workspace and clean up from it… no longer do I find paintbrushes in the sink with the breakfast dishes – really all it takes is a quick rinse under the tap and the brush is clean and ready to be put away!!! It really is easy and even the youngest little people can be expected to clean up after themselves.
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    And the se7en + 1th thing…

  15. Other Good Habits: The sort of painting we did was not totally mind-consuming and for the first time ever we may have established a completely different habit on the side… listening to audiobooks. While we have done this from time to time, we have never established it as the norm. You try and keep all eight kids quiet enough and not expressing their own opinion and interrupting enough to listen to a good book and have their hands quiet and busy enough to so that they don’t get distracted at the same time. Maybe with one or two kids playing with LEGO, as many folk have suggested, you can do it… but the roar of eight kids sweeping through the LEGO box at once means that LEGO is anything but a quiet activity. Turns out if you wait a few minutes for folk to settle and get themselves going you can quietly put an audio book on and they will listen away. We have been listening to dozens of books like this and right now we are listening to the Little Princess and loving it…

The Gallery

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Honestly, I love how the artwork piled up… and I am really impressed that we have made it!!! Se7en + 1 watercolour books put together…


We are very excited about the next project we will be doing – just putting it all together to post later on in the day…

10 Replies to “Se7en’s Painting A Day… The Journey…”

  1. Thank you for sharing how it worked for you. I love the idea and will be putting it in the schedule. What kind of paper did you use? watercolor paper or just whatever you had on hand?

  2. Hello, hello, hello from Instagram!

    I SO adored all the painting pics you posted there this past month, and after reading this post, I am READY READY READY to do this with my own kiddos! I was really wanting to listen to all of the Narnia books with the kiddos this year, and painting while we do it will be such a blessing!

    Thank you for the loveliness and inspiration!

  3. Hay Sharlene, So glad you enjoyed it!!! I did think about using watercolour paper… but then thought about it and 30 odd days times eight kids… and a few extras… between 250 and 300 pages gasp, so we just used printer paper and in fact cut the paper in half… so A5 paper worked for us!!! Once you start it does get easier to keep at it!!! Thanks so much for stopping by and have a great week!!!

  4. Hello, hello, hello…. Amber from instgram, so cool to have you pop over and visit us!!! Oh listen to the Narnia books already!!! We recently read the first two, couldn’t find the third – missing in action – thanks for reminding me, we need to do a search for it!!! Hope you enjoy a couple of painting days really soon!!!

  5. Oh, wow! I love this and I love the fact that you made it low key, no pressure, and look at the beautiful and fun results! 🙂

    Very inspiring, friend!

    I can’t wait to see what you do next!

  6. Oh Kara, thank you for your lovely comment, made my day!!! We are very excited about our next project too… it is going to be a fun one!!! Hope you are having a fabulous week and congratulations on your anniversary – what a special post on simplekids… I was pretty much a wreck reading that!!! Wishing your family all the very best – exciting times!!!

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