Mixed media collage is one of our favorite process based art projects for kids. The possibilities are endless and each child’s collage will come out completely unique. We did this mixed media collage with tinker trays and it was so much fun. Are you familiar with tinker trays? I have a bunch of posts on them. Try Make Tinker Trays and All About Tinker Trays if you’re looking for a little more info. If not, you can jump right in here.
Some kind of compartmentalized tray – you can use a recycled egg carton or Melissa and Doug box, a paint tray like you see below, or a great wooden box available on Amazon.
different odds and ends for gluing
glitter – (of course glitter)
dried or pressed flowers
a canvas, piece of sturdy paper, or cardboard (we used canvases for ours)
Paint your canvas. You can choose colors to match whatever season it is. We did these in spring so you can see lots of happy spring colors.
Fill your tinker tray with all sorts of goodies that might be fun to glue onto the canvas. You can see ours below. I have a bunch of trays set up because we did this in art class with 8 students. Each two or three children got their own tinker tray. I had them lying out in the floor in our garage for a minute before class and as you can see below, my daughter Gigi, was quick to get in on the action.
Invite your child to use the items in the tinker tray to make a mixed media collage. As they are working you can talk about how collages often tell a story. You’ll hear me say in class “I wonder what story your collage is going to tell?”
These mixed media collages all had their own story. The one above is a picnic. The yellow origami paper is the blanket. Doesn’t it look so inviting? I’d picnic there for sure.
I really loved the addition of the pressed flowers, which we’ve been enjoying a lot lately. If you see a flower press at a yard sale, grab it. I scored one for 3 bucks at a local thrift shop and we use it all the time. You can use a heavy book just as well. I’ve also been cutting up a lot of pictures from magazines and catalogs based on the seasons. They add a nice touch to collages.
Everyone’s favorite. Add glitter. I have the kids paint a little glue on their collage with a brush and then gently tap the glitter bottle over the glue spots, saying “tap, tap, tap” as they go. You’d be surprised how careful children can be if you train them, even with glitter! Kids love the glitter so much so I try to include it whenever I can.
There you have it. Mixed media collages with tinker trays. I would love to see yours. Please tag me on instagram if you make any summer ones. Thanks everyone. Happy summer! xo Meri