Introduction: Melted Crayon Art

This is an easy, straightforward project that delivers a lot of graphic impact for not very much effort. Seriously, the hardest part is unwrapping all the crayons.

You will need:
a blank canvas
crayons, new or old (I needed about 60-70 for my 16" x 20" canvas)
a utility or exacto knife (optional, for peeling the crayons)
hot glue gun
heat tool or a hair dryer with a diffuser or low blower setting

Step 1: Prep the Canvas

First cover your work surface in newspaper.

Then decide what kind of color spectrum you are going to do. Remember you don't have to do just a rainbow. You could do only cool colors, only warm colors, a random assortment, big stripes, etc.

Take the wrappers off all the crayons you're going to use. A quick and easy way to do this is to slit each wrapper with a utility knife. It will then just peel right off.

Next lay out your crayons along the top edge of your canvas until you like how the sequence of colors looks.

Then hot glue each one down right next to one another with the tops flush to the top of the canvas.

Step 2: Melt!

Once all your crayons are glued down, prop your canvas up at a gentle angle. I used a glass of water. Make sure the bottom edge is over your newspaper.

Turn on your heat tool or hair dryer. If you're using a hair dryer, you'll need to put it on a low blower setting or use a diffuser, otherwise it will spatter the wax everywhere.

Focus the heat on the crayons. They will quickly turn sweaty, then start dripping down the canvas.

You can change the tilt of the canvas to control how fast the drips go.

Once you're satisfied with how it looks, let it cool a few minutes and hang it up!

Comments

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friendship12396 made it!(author)2011-10-02

Very nice, easy to do :) heres mine

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globalcop made it!(author)2017-02-17

Made one of these for my son's room. I like the way it looks with the Crayola crayon label still on.

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rusticgreen made it!(author)2012-07-19

This is awesome art! In response to "suppose to take the wrappers off" - I beg to differ. Its a matter of choice, and I love yours. If you turned the art work around the wrappers can look like a picket fence.

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Dasdoppleg%C3%A4nger made it!(author)2016-08-20

Thank you for explaining what "take the wrappers off" means. You're so polite... "I beg your differ..."

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SurfRW made it!(author)2011-10-08

You're supposed to cut away the papers...

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friendship12396 made it!(author)2011-10-09

I can do it any way I want to. It still worked didnt it, so why does it matter? I wanted to keep the papers on.

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SurfRW made it!(author)2011-10-11

chill man, it's called constructive criticism.

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Dasdoppleg%C3%A4nger made it!(author)2016-08-20

Take the papers off? What does that mean?

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KeelyG2 made it!(author)2015-12-16

Then your "critique" should have been "in my opinion I think it looks better with the wrappers on"

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Yonatan24 made it!(author)2016-02-17

+1

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KellyWoo made it!(author)2016-02-16

Looks great , there are no rules with art ! Cheers !!

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cmcmillen made it!(author)2011-11-16

I LOVE it with the papers still in place!

The great thing about art/craft projects is making it your own!! :D

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sjohnson50 made it!(author)2011-11-30

Since when do the words "you're supposed to" have a place in art?

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Th1nk_Ed10 made it!(author)2016-04-11

Exactly!

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friendship12396 made it!(author)2011-11-30

Thank you. :) my point exactly...

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NerdyGirl79 made it!(author)2016-04-12

This looks beautiful just the way it is :-)

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vaiomouse8 made it!(author)2011-12-18

so im looking at the ones posted here and i like yours the best
im going to leave the wrappers on mine :)

it looks like when u leave the wrappers on you melt less wax and i like the nice colors and really like the negative space

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friendship12396 made it!(author)2011-12-18

Thanks! Glad you like it!!

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made it!(author)2011-10-15

Looks amazing!

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flio191 made it!(author)2011-09-11

I didn't realize crayon art was becoming a thing, but I fully support it!!! Here's a piece of mine using crayons and an iron.

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NerdyGirl79 made it!(author)2016-04-26

That is beautiful.

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NerdyGirl79 made it!(author)2016-04-26

That is beautiful.

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rusticgreen made it!(author)2012-07-19

What a beautiful piece of art! Did you put any thing over the crayons before putting the iron on it?

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flio191 made it!(author)2012-07-19

Thanks! Well, it was half taking the iron (craft iron, has no holes) and pushing a crayon against it to drip it down onto the surface, and half scraping off small pieces of crayon onto the surface and then ironing them on. Whenever I changed colors I just wiped the iron with a napkin. There was some parts where I tried just heating up the surface from underneath but it didn't give me the brush-like texture that I wanted. The iron will get messy so I'd recommend either a craft iron (the small cheap ones) or an iron you don't plan to use again (though, I dunno what the holes might to... might be interesting to experiment with the steam function?

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ThisIsMyNameOK made it!(author)2015-08-10

I'm guessing that using the steam function would be a bad idea.

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flio191 made it!(author)2015-08-12

Yeah I used a craft iron that had no holes to begin with. In any case, I'd recommend using an iron you won't be needing anymore or something you're dedicating to "art projects"

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ThisIsMyNameOK made it!(author)2015-08-18

I just got a cheap craft iron a few days ago. Had a lot of fun experimenting but the iron kept getting too hot and it would start to smoke so I had to unplug it for a bit then plug it back in. The fumes kind of got to me too, so I think I will have to wait until I can work outside. Too hot right now.

Did you ever try using the steam? Did it work out okay?

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kgulliksen made it!(author)2011-09-16

I LOVE IT!!!

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mrsbelcher made it!(author)2011-09-12

Did you create this on canvas? It is just beautiful. It makes me think of fall, my favorite season!

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flio191 made it!(author)2011-09-12

Thank you! I used a giant mat board. Canvas might be interesting too but you'd have to take the canvas off the wood and put it against a hard backing then re-stretch (but it'd make the hard wax crack). But otherwise might be an interesting effect with the pores of the cloth absorbing pigment. Fall is my favorite season too!

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TheGeek1984 made it!(author)2015-05-01

I made one of these last weekend with a friend, then made another wanting to make an instructable, but you beat me to it!

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NerdyGirl79 made it!(author)2016-04-26

I'm going to attempt doing this in the next few weeks. I have a box of crayons calling out to me. lol

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NerdyGirl79 made it!(author)2016-04-12

wow...awesome! I'm looking for new art projects to do (since my brain gets really bored sometimes). I have a big box of crayons that need melting!

Thanks!

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syuu+hada made it!(author)2015-12-16

Hi there,ive a question,what type of canvas should i buy,ive look at the choices,they sell stretched canvas,box camvas and canvas pad,which one suits best for this purpose?Thank you

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Secret_Casket made it!(author)2015-11-03

what type of crayons did you use? I have a variety of different types of crayons, the ones I have in my hand now are oil pastels.

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RubyFusca made it!(author)2015-09-22

that looks amazing

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Kcberm made it!(author)2015-08-31

soak the crayons in warm water and soap and the labels practically fall off

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PACW made it!(author)2015-04-13

Please Help! I have a piece of melted crayon art that was a gift. The crayon is lifting off the canvass. I am hesitant to just take a heat gun to it but I don't know what else to do. Do you have any ideas at all?

Thank you.

author
ThisIsMyNameOK made it!(author)2015-08-18

After you apply heat and get it stuck back on the canvas, try sealing it with something to help prevent it from happening again, if it hasn't already been sealed. Wax art doesn't hold up very well over the long term, from what I have learned while researching it. There are special wax sealers you can purchase, but some spray varnish should work. I saw a video on YouTube where the artist recommended using floor polish, but that was with encaustic paints made from beeswax and resin, I don't know if it would work with crayon art.

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Allie1709 made it!(author)2015-05-27

You shouldn't use a heat gun for something like this, it's too intense. Use a hair dryer without any of the special tips on it. Try it on low heat before switching to high, the strips of wax will flatten out on the canvas if it's too hot.

I'm having a similar problem and and trying to find a perminant solution. I'd like the long drops of wax to stick better to the canvas. If anyone has ideas, send me them!

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Jackiefkuhn made it!(author)2015-07-06

Hairspray

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Jackiefkuhn made it!(author)2015-07-06

Use hairspray it does the trick

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gravityisweak made it!(author)2015-08-13

I made it! I've remixed this idea into an instructable of my own! Thanks for the inspiration!

https://www.instructables.com/id/Wax-Canvas-Art/

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vcusick made it!(author)2012-08-07

are you seriously taking the time to cut the wrappers of all the crayons?
Easy version- take your crayons, throw them in a bowl of water for about five minutes. The wrappers will literally fall off the crayons in no time. When I did it i had to help like...maybe 5 wrappers off. the rest just floated to the surface.

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ThisIsMyNameOK made it!(author)2015-08-10

Or you could do it the really easy way and just peel them off. Unless something has changed since I last used crayons, they come off pretty easily.

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amihemrajani made it!(author)2015-01-25

Not sure if this has been asked before, but i want an accent wall in my son's room to be painted with crayon art. Can i do it directly on the walls? Will it last and not start chipping and cracking overtime? Plz recommend...thx

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ThisIsMyNameOK made it!(author)2015-08-10

Hi amihemrajani. My advice would be to polish the crayon painting by lightly rubbing it with a soft cloth, to bring out the shine, and then coating it with a clear varnish of some kind. If you don't use something to protect it, it will just scratch right off whenever anything rubs against it.

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Penolopy+Bulnick made it!(author)2011-10-10

That looks so beautiful. Does it wreck your iron though?

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flio191 made it!(author)2011-10-10

Absolutely. Wrecked up my microwave too. worth it!

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Penolopy+Bulnick made it!(author)2011-10-10

Microwave too? I agree though. I love it!

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