Celebrate the New Year with a fireworks salt painting! These salt paintings are SO FUN to make, and it’s such an easy New Year’s craft for kids.
Watch as liquid watercolor paint spreads across the raised salt and glue like a firework exploding in the night sky. These bright and bold fireworks pop right off the page — it’s such a magical way to make art!
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How to Make a Fireworks Salt Painting
Check Out The Video Tutorial:
Step 1: Find what you need
- Gather your supplies and materials.
Step 2: Draw the fireworks with glue
- Begin by using white glue to draw the fireworks on black cardstock. We cut our paper in half, to make it 6 x 9 inches, but you can use a full page if you'd like.You can also draw fireworks with a pencil first, but we actually found it easier to freehand the fireworks with the glue, rather than following specific lines.
- Start the firework by drawing a "seagull" style of "M" with the glue, and then draw more curved lines going off to the side and bottom. Finally, add some short unconnected lines that look like they're coming from the center.
- Continue, adding more fireworks on your page, in different sizes until you've filled the paper.
Step 3: Add salt to the glue
- Sprinkle the glue with a generous amount of salt, making sure all of it is covered.
- Lift the paper and let the excess salt fall off.You can put the paper upside-down briefly, but don't tap or shake the paper -- it can cause too much salt to fall off, and the glue may flatten.You can re-use this salt for your next painting.
Step 4: Prepare the watercolour paint
- Pour a bit of water into a deep paint palette or into small bowls (1 section or bowl per colour you want to use).
- Add liquid watercolour paint to the water. Try for a 3:1 water to paint ratio. For example, 3 teaspoons of water for every 1 teaspoon of paint - but it doesn't need to be exact.
- Stir the paint into the water with your paintbrush before using it.
Step 5: Add paint to the raised salt lines
- Bring the brush over to the salt-covered glue and lightly touch the brush to the salt. Watch as the paint spreads, like magic, across the salt.
- Continue adding a little bit of paint at a time, and enjoy watching the paint spread across the salt.
- Use a new colour of paint for the next firework.Clean your brush in water between colours and make sure it's not too wet when you pick up the paint.
- Continue painting until all your fireworks are bright and colourful.
- You can also create different fireworks designs and use more than 1 colour of paint on the same firework.
- Your fireworks salt painting is complete!
- You can also use an eyedropper to add the paint onto the salt.
- Make a multi-coloured firework with complementary colours of paint that will blend nicely.
What type of paper is used for firework salt painting?
We used a black drawing paper that has the thickness of cardstock. You need to use a thick paper that won’t absorb too much of the glue and that can handle liquid without warping too much. Black watercolour paper would be the best choice, but the drawing paper also worked fine.
We love the look of black paper, representing the night sky, but white or another colour would be fine as well.
What paint is best for fireworks salt painting?
We used diluted liquid watercolour paint, with a 3:1 water to paint ratio. You need to use liquid colour that will spread across the salt easily, so watered down food colouring would also work.
You can also use undiluted watercolor paint or food coloring (ie. no water added). This gives your painting very vibrant colours.
How long does the salt painting last?
This art project is more about the process than the dried result – The salt paintings tend to look best on the first day. And they look the brightest before they’ve dried.
If you flex the paper to hang them on the fridge – especially after they’re dry – the salt will start to fall off. Enjoy these paintings while you make them, but don’t expect to transport them very far or to save them for very long.
When making salt painted fireworks, do you wait for the glue to dry?
We don’t wait for the glue to dry — we like to paint on the salt right away. However, you can wait for a few hours (or longer) to allow the glue to dry.
When painting on the wet glue you need to be careful, just barely touching it with the brush, since it can smudge easily. So painting the salt once the glue is dry might be easier for younger kids.
These salt painted fireworks are so much fun to make for New Year’s Eve, 4th of July, Bonfire Night, or any other fireworks holiday! Choose the shape of the fireworks and the colours you want to add to your firework salt painting — there’s no wrong way to make this easy kids art project!
Here’s even more salt painting ideas:
Our book Low-Mess Crafts for Kids is loaded with 72 fun and simple craft ideas for kids! The projects are fun, easy and most importantly low-mess, so the clean up is simple!