Painting is one of my favorite activities to do with Dorian. I’ve heard that many parents tend to shy away from painting due to time issues and the mess. Here are a few tips to ease your worries and get you making timeless memories with your little one.
Expect a Mess
I know this is much easier said than done, but if you already have it in your head that there will be a giant mess then it won’t feel so dreadful afterwards. This is always my first step to painting with Dorian. I make sure we have enough time to paint, have lots of fun, and clean up after. When he is painting I try not to give him too many rules and just let him paint how he wants to, making whatever mess.
Prepare Painting Area Before Inviting Toddler Over
This one is something I try to stick to with most toddler activities. First, I make sure that his canvas or paper is in place with brushes close. Then I make sure that the cleaning supplies are near, for just in case. For us, cleaning supplies for painting is simply baby wipes. Last, I pour the paints that we will be using. After all is set up, I will invite him over and show him what we are painting.
Feel Confident in the Products You Use
Anyone that knows me knows that I don’t like to use a bunch of crazy chemicals and thoroughly read packaging before purchases. With paint, like most other art supplies, it usually ends up on your skin and with toddlers it definitely ends up all over them. So this is one department that I do no buy off brands for. Dorian has been using the Crayola washable paints since he was around 1 year old and I have never had a problem getting it off of him. He used to try and taste it when he was younger, but quickly stopped when he realized it doesn’t taste good (luckily it’s nontoxic).
Have Fun with Them
Most kids will be more engaged when they see you are involved and enjoying the activity as well. I usually set myself up a little sheet and paint next to him. He doesn’t always do as I do which is fine, it’s his exploration time, but I will kind of describe what I’m doing so he becomes more familiar with painting terms. Once he decides he is done painting, he heads straight to the bath. He is almost always covered in as much paint as his canvas and loves to watch the colors mix up in the tub and run down the drain.