Little Picassos

Painting with Q-Tips

What do you do with a Toddler on a rainy day? What will possibly entertain your stir-crazy toddler, with little to no prep?  Open up that medicine cabinet and grab some Q-Tips! This week, explore pointillism with your Little Picasso by painting with Q-Tips!

Feeling Inspired

I know it sounds weird– painting with Q-Tips — especially if you have perfectly good paint brushes laying around. But, painting with Q-Tips is not only fun, it also simultaneously explores a Neo-Impressionist painting technique– Pointillism. If you are a gallery goer, or art connoisseur – Georges Seurat may ring a bell. Seurat painted huge, beautiful paintings with dots! ( Google A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte to see how beautiful!)

Activity: Q-Tip Painting

– Q-Tips (2 per colours)

– Liquid tempera paints – primary colours
– Paper or foam cut outs

– plastic egg carton or tray

All Set? Time to get to steppin’!

Step 1.
Get Your Prep On!

Prep is pretty simple, pour out small amounts of liquid tempera paint into your plastic egg carton or tray. Place 1-2 Q-Tips in each colour. Get paper or foam ready. Then call over your Little Picasso.

Step 2.
Introduce your Little Picasso to the materials. Give a little demo of taking the Q- Tip, dipping it into paint and then stamping or hopping it along the paper. I said “hop hop hop” while I painted.

Step 3.
Release the Picasso

Hand over the reigns to your Little Picasso. Say “hop hop hop” to remind them of the technique, and watch the magic happen. Encourage them to explore each colour, but sit back and enjoy their developing fine motor skills and the masterpiece. They will let you know when they’ve had enough, or want more.

Step 4.
Dry and Display

Once they are off to another discovery (read: making a new mess) hang their masterpiece to dry, name and date it.

Step 5.
Next Level

If your Little Picasso enjoyed this activity. Next time you can give them a flower or a rainbow cut out to fill in with colourful dots. Or take pom poms and clip clothes pegs to them, and give your Little Picasso a variety of dot sizes to explore.

Happy Creating!

Looking for more rainy day activities? Check out some other Little Picasso posts below!

Fun with Stamps
Little Chicks
Coffee Filter Flowers
The Very Hangry Toddler






I’m Char, Mike’s wife and Ben’s mama. We live in the east end and love long walks on the beach with our spunky wiener dog Sammie. My weeks often straddle a fine line as a stay-at-home mama, while hustling as an arts educator and freelance content writer/ illustrator. If you’re looking for me, I’ll be under the pile of laundry with my toddler, prepping materials for my next art workshop.

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