Handprint Pattern Resist Painting

Hand Print Pattern Crayon Resist

Finished Teacher Example After Watercolors have been painted.

2nd-5th Grade Art Handprint Pattern (Rhythm) Crayon & Watercolor Resist

Teaching the principles of art to elementary students can sometimes be a challenge, especially the younger students. Coupling the lesson with examples of rhythm in music and rhythm in poetry helps make audible connections to the concept. So when presenting a lesson on pattern, repetition, and rhythm find good music & poetry examples to begin the lesson with.  I had them practice making patterns. We also learned about warm and cool colors in this lesson.

Who doesn’t love watching the “magic” happen when you paint watercolors over crayons! I LOVE it- Watercolor and crayon resist paintings are amongst my favorite art projects! It is also a good cross-curriculum lesson with Science and Art. Oil & water don’t mix and we see a perfect visual example of this when we paint watercolors over the crayons. This is a fun mixed-media lesson!!

Supplies: pencils, 12×18″ Tagboard, crayons or oil pastels (in warm colors), Watercolor paints, brushes, Optional: Basic Watercolor Techniques Lesson & Worksheet


  1. Have children trace their hands 5-7 times in pencil on a sheet of 12×18″ tagboard or watercolor paper. Younger kids may need help, I encouraged them to do it on their own, but if they really needed help then they could ask their partner to draw only one or two hands.

    Handprint Pattern

    Outline Hands 5-7 times on a 12×18″ piece of tagboard

  2. Studens trace all their hands in different warm colored crayons (red, orange, yellow & intemediate colors too). Make sure they are drawing THICK lines-this helps in the resist process.
  3. Next, draw patterns using only warm colored crayons. Encourage them to make a new pattern in each hand.
    Pattern Handprint Resist

    Draw different patterns in each hand using WARM colors.

    Handprint with Warm Color Pattern

    Handprint with Warm Color Pattern

There are many options to the next part. I am including pictures of samples I have made experimenting with different backgrounds. The important part is to incorporate the COOL colors into the background somehow. Cool colors are green, blue, & purple (with their intermediate colors). The black background is India Ink.

Hand Print Resist with Cool Background
Hand Print Resist with Cool Background

Hand Print Resist with Black Background

Hand Print Resist Black with Cool Background
Hand Print Resist Black with Cool Background

If you choose to use this lesson or to repost it (written info or photos), please link it back to my blog. Create Art with ME

Additional Watercolor Lessons:

Seahorse Warm & Cool Color Watercolor Painting

Basic Watercolor Techniques Lesson Plan & Worksheet

Basic Watercolor Lesson

Basic Watercolor Lesson

St. Basil Watercolor Painting Lesson

Other Crayon Resist Lessons:

Pumpkin & Gourd Still Life Painting Lesson

Heart – Pattern Mixed Media Lesson

Sand Dollar Pattern Watercolor Resit