Introduction: Simple Fluid Art


Fluid art is artwork created by pouring paint onto a canvas and letting it dry. Each canvas will be different because of the different colors used and the unpredictability of how the paint will flow. This is a fun way to make new artwork for your home and a good way to relieve stress.


When doing this kind of art, do it in a well-ventilated area with plastic covering anything you do not want to get paint on. If you don't want your canvas on a flat surface, you can place your canvas on the drying wrack on a box to collect the paint when it drips off of the canvas in Step 3 - Step 6.


1. Blank Canvas (I used 10in by 10 in)

2. Paint colors (at least three are recommended)

3. Water

4. Floetrol

5. Cups (I used 8 oz cups)

6. Mixing Sticks

7. Painting Knife

8. Pastry Torch

9. Drying rack

Step 1: Mix Your Colors

1. Mix the colors you want to use for the project into clean plastic cups. The more paint you have the more available to pour onto the canvas. Mix them well with the sticks until the paint easily comes off the stick, but doesn't flow like water. The combination for the mixture is roughly:

  • ½ paint color
  • ½ Floetrol
  • A few drops of water (The water is in case you have thicker paint. If the paint is thin like water add more paint and Floetrol until it is thicker.)

2. Mix the base paint (in the image it is the black paint) in a larger quantity, but in the same formula as above.

  • Use a bigger cup if you need to and make at least twice what you did of the other colors

Step 2: Combine Your Colors

1. Pour the mixed colors into a clean cup in layers.

  • Some paint will sink to the bottom of the cup and some will settle on the top of the other colors. If it sinks, pour a little slower or add a few more drops of water to thin out the paint. Create at least two layers of each color in the cup.

2. Fill the cup until it is about two-thirds of the way full and set it to the side to use in a later step.

Step 3: Cover Your Canvas With the Base Color

1. Pour your base color onto the blank canvas.

  • You can use any color because this layer allows the next layer to move on the canvas. It will show minimally if at all on the finished project.

2. Cover every part of the canvas with this layer of paint, including the sides and corners.

  • To spread it around, use a flat object or paint knives. Paint knives are easier to use on the sides of the canvas because they are smaller.

Step 4: Dump the Colors on the Canvas

1. Turn over your cup with the layered colors onto the center of the canvas.

  • Some paint will spill off the sides. If the cup starts to slide, press on the top of the cup gently with your finger to keep it in place.

2. Leave the cup on the center of the canvas for thirty seconds to a minute to let the paint settle.

3. Lift the cup from the canvas and let it empty of all the paint before setting it off the side.

  • Let the paint spread out for about thirty seconds so it can cover more of the center. If there are bubbles, you will need to use the pastry torch to get rid of them. Simply run the flame over the canvas for about ten seconds or until bubbles disappear.

Step 5: Tilt the Canvas

1. Pick up the canvas from the underside and tilt it to one corner so the paint begins to move.

  • The paint might move quickly and will drop off the edge, but this will cover the corner.

2. Rotate the canvas until all four corners and sides are covered by this second layer of paint.

  • The more you tilt the canvas the quicker the paint will move. If you like a certain pattern you see already on the canvas tilt the canvas a little less so the paint doesn’t move as fast.

Step 6: Set the Canvas Aside to Dry

1. Place your canvas somewhere flat and covered while it dries.

  • Leaving it on a rack will be easiest so it doesn’t stick to the surface beneath it.

2. Leave the painting for at least two days and check to see if it is dry.

  • The warmer the area, the quicker the paint will dry. You will have the same image as when you left it to dry, but it will not be shiny.