Introduction: Easy Hot Glue Tree Canvas

In this Instructable I'm going to be showing you how to make these really easy tree canvases using hot glue and some basic craft supplies. They're really cheap and easy to make and they look great. Each one costs around $2 to $6 depending on the size of the canvas and where you get the supplies from and it takes about an hour to make. You can pick up most of the supplies from your local dollar store, packs of two or three canvases are usually cheaper.


To make one canvas you'll need:

  • A blank craft canvas, 40cm x 40cm (16" x 16") or larger.
  • A glue gun and glue sticks
  • A flat paint brush
  • A metallic ink stamp pad, silver, gold or copper works well
  • Black spray paint (you can use craft paint too, it just takes longer to apply)

Step 1: Sketch the Tree

You don't have to be an artist for this step and you can make as many mistakes as you need, you're going to cover it up with paint anyway.

I started by dividing the canvas up with some basic marks for the roots, trunk and branches in order to get the proportions correct. Mostly because I'm pretty bad at drawing.

Use your marks as a guide to sketch you trunk, then add the roots and then the branches. You can sketch over areas which don't come out well and add branches as you need. Try not to make the branches too thin and get them relatively evenly spaced out so that they fill most of the upper half of the canvas.

Step 2: Add the Glue

Now comes the fun part, adding the glue.

Add stripes of glue along your trunk, root and branch lines. You want them to be thick and rounded. It's ok if there are gaps between the stripes of glue, you don't want to put them too close together and have them join up.

Fill in all of the lines you've drawn until you've completed the tree.

Once the glue has hardened, pull off any stringy ends and make sure that there aren't any drops or sharp ends.

Step 3: Paint the Canvas

Now you're going to cover up your canvas and glue.

You don't have to use black paint, you can use any paint that'll match your theme, just try to use a colour which contrasts well with your stamp colour. So use a light paint with a dark stamp or a dark paint with a light stamp.

I used spray paint because it's quick and easy to apply and it dries quickly too.

Spray the whole canvas, and the edges. Make sure that you get in between the glue stripes as well, there shouldn't be any white showing when you're done.

Step 4: Add Your Metallic Highlights

Now use your paintbrush to highlight the glue.

Brush your paintbrush on the stamp pad so that the tip of the paintbrush has some metallic ink on it. Don't put a lot of ink onto it, you want the brush to still be relatively dry. Next brush the ink across the glue stripes to highlight them, use quick and light brush strokes perpendicular to the length of the stripes (90 degrees to the direction of the glue). Don't press down too much and try not get the ink onto the canvas, you just want to highlight the glue.

Highlight the trunk, roots and branches.

Step 5: Let the Ink Dry

Once the ink is dry, your canvas is ready to hang. Your canvas should come with a picture hook on the back or the sides.

Enjoy making your own canvases.

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