Aluminum Foil Painting

aluminum foil paintingWhy stop with paper when you can paint on egg cartons, fabric, and wood? I love digging around my cabinets and recycling bin for substrates other than paper, and aluminum foil became the basis of yesterday’s second painting experiment. (The first was Drippy Gravity Painting).

aluminum foil paintingFoil wrapped around a piece of cardboard.

aluminum foil paintingAnd securely taped.

aluminum foil paintingN chose blue and orange paint. She has a thing for blue, so that was no surprise. After mixing the two colors she exclaimed, “I made black!” Well, not exactly, but I saw her point and didn’t have the heart to set her straight. Don’t you love the shine of that foil? Who wouldn’t want to paint on that?

We used BioColor paint, which worked nicely on the foil.  If you’re using tempera, just add a little dish soap to it, which will help the paint adhere to the foil and keep it from cracking.

aluminum foil paintingBut the project didn’t end there. Oh no. Once the painting had run its course, she picked up a pencil, fascinated by how it etched into the surface of the foil.

Painting on foil was an valuable exercise in working with a new material, gaining the experience of pushing paint along a super-smooth surface, and engraving pencil marks into the soft and pliable foil. Next time the foil comes out, I think we could do some cool things with tissue paper collage. Can’t wait!

Do you have any other ideas for aluminum foil art experiments?


  1. oh my, this makes ME want to paint and draw on aluminum foil! seriously! it looks like so much fun!

    • me too! next time I’m joining her!

    • Gel markers! I’ve never seen them in the stores, but there they are online. Thanks for the tip, Melissa. I’m always looking for new materials to play with.

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