How to create a pour painting
Set aside your paintbrushes and get ready for a new way to make art!
With just plastic cups, you can create fluid abstract pieces that are one of a kind.
You simply pour paint over your canvases and tilt to let it flow into gorgeous, creative swirls and shapes. The possibilities and colour combos are endless, and the results just beautiful. It’s time for you to pour it on!
Why stop at one flow artwork when you can have three? This modern take on a traditional triptych – three carved panels that tell a story – uses canvases and pouring paint to create a flowing abstract design for a splash of bold colour on your walls.
Gather your supplies
- Pouring paints in 4 shades of blue
- Small canvas
You’ll also need
- Plastic cups
- Disposable gloves
Prepare a paint box with 4 upturned cups. Pour paint into a plastic cup. Fill to one-third with light blue, then add the next colour, pouring it down the inside of the cup. The paint will marble.
Wearing gloves, place canvas face down on cup, carefully flip canvas.
Lay canvas flat on work surface and hold cup in place and wait as paint runs down inside of cup.
Hold canvas over paint box and tilt it from side to side so paint flows.
Pour more paint onto canvas from bottle and tilt canvas. Sit canvas on cups in paint box.
Use your finger to rub paint along canvas edges. Leave to dry.
Make your own pouring paint
You can make your own pouring paint by adding a medium to acrylic paint.
Soft body or craft acrylics are better suited than heavy body acrylics.
Floetrol, from hardware stores, is a paint conditioner that extends the wet edge and keeps paint flowing.
Add it in a 1:1 ratio to paint in a cup, then slowly stir with a wooden craft stick until completely blended.
Adjust the ratios as need to achieve a pouring consistency.
Other inspirational ideas
While you’re on a paint pouring roll, turn your attention to homewares. Use the same tilting method on coasters as you did on canvases, making sure the edges are covered.
Don’t stop at coasters, you can use the flow art technique on other homewares – cheese boards, serving trays, placemats – but just be mindful as the paint isn’t food safe.
Make a triptych
You can make a much larger artwork using three canvases to create a triptych.
Sit three canvases side by side on upturned cups on a covered work surface.
As well as gloves, it’s a good idea to wear a paper painting suit as this method can get a little messy!
Squirt white onto the canvases and rub it along the sides.
Pour over blues from cups, then use a hairdryer on a full blast on the cold setting to push the paint around the canvases.