Graffiti Paint Can Lamp




Introduction: Graffiti Paint Can Lamp

About: Everything we do at reCreate Design Company is focused on one (really important!) thing – extending the lifespan of existing materials. How we go about that is as diverse as the very materials that we ...

What would you do with a crumpled bunch of wire sheep fencing and a pile of used graffiti cans that you salvaged from the wild?

I made a one-of-a-kind lamp, of course!

So first things first. We've entered this lamp in the Lighting kind and vote for it if you like this project. It gives us a chance to win some much-needed tools!

Step 1: How To

Here's how I did it.

1. First wrap the wire into whatever circular (barrel) shape you want. I chose a pretty wide oversized shape...'cause that's how I roll.

2. Take those graffiti cans and empty the of all paint - and gas! That means you gotta find yourself a scrap sheet of wood, head outdoors, and press that cap down until you don't hear the 'hiss' of the gas anymore. It can take 3-5 minutes per can.

3. Put a puncture hole in the can - just to make sure that all gas has been released. This can be done with a sharp pointed tool of any kind...and a hammer. Alternatively you can use a metal borr.

4. Here's where I nearly lost a finger! I hand cut each and every panel out with heavy duty scissors. It worked, but caused my finger to really swell up bad since it took so much pressure to do the cutting. I cut off the top of the can...and the bottom of the can. Next time I think I'll use some kind of metal saw and see how that works.

What's left are these beautiful....

Step 2: OOAK Art

...little panels of one-of-a-kind art!

You see, when you open the graffiti spray cans you never know what you're going to get inside. Those little balls that you hear when you shake a can? Sometime they leave the most incredible patterns on the inside of the can! I was in love with each can that I opened.

I punched a hole (can also use drill) in each corner of each little panel. Then found a simple silver wire to 'hang' them in open spaces around the wire fencing.

I then used a thin twisted wire in three points around the form to hang from a hook in the ceiling. The inner round lamp was purchased at a thrift store.

Step 3: Honoring the Material

I also like honoring the material when I always try to leave traces of the original. In this case it was to leave the outsides of the cans untreated - and now they are the insides of the lamp. That way you see the labels when you look up and into the lamp.

I left the metal wire hanging down at the reminds me of little tassles.

Step 4: Hop to It

Time to hop to it and make one for yourself! Be adventurous with your shapes...and be careful with your fingers!

This project doesn't cost much, but it definitely takes time. All good art does!

If you want to see more of our stuff, hop over to our website:

Reuse - Repurpose - Relove



    • Water Contest

      Water Contest
    • Fix It! Contest

      Fix It! Contest
    • Metalworking Contest

      Metalworking Contest

    17 Discussions

    I'd pay good money for that lamp, if I had any good money. It's an amazing work of art.

    1 reply

    Great way to recycle those empty spray cans, and create a work of art!

    1 reply

    Great Job.. love the idea.. love the colors.. good way to help the planet and make it cool at the same time...... I would hang this in my home or patio in a heart beat .. So I just have to make one...... Thanks

    1 reply

    How to make lampshade, lanterns and yarn globes. You can do it.

    If the videos was useful. Thanks for watching. Please share your friends. ^^


    1 year ago

    I could definitely see this at the Burning Man Festival! Cool!

    1 reply

    What a great compliment...thanks!
    Now if we could only move The Burning Man over to Sweden... :)

    This is a super cute idea! This would look great outside on my patio! thank you for the idea and the instructions!

    1 reply

    This is such a neat idea. I love the idea.

    I think I may have to just start taking apart my spent spray cans and tacking the metal up on my shop wall. Very cool! :)

    1 reply

    I promise - you'll fall in love with each little art panel that appears when you open the cans. <3