Salt doesn’t just make foods tastier—it can also help you create colorful works of art!
Decide on your design: Will you create a picture of something (or someone), or will you create an interesting pattern? Use pencil to sketch or trace outline of your design on watercolor paper.
Working over rimmed baking sheet, carefully pick up paper and gently shake off excess salt (let salt fall onto baking sheet). Let glue dry for 5 minutes. Ask an adult to help you pour excess salt back into bowl.
Continue loading paintbrush with paint and touching paintbrush to salt. If you want to switch colors, be sure to thoroughly rinse paintbrush in water before dipping it in new color of paint.
Why does the watercolor paint color the salt, but not the paper below? It’s all thanks to the special relationship between salt and water. Salt is hygroscopic (“hi-grow-SKAH-pick”). That means it’s REALLY good at absorbing water from its surroundings. Don’t believe us? Try dripping some water onto the extra salt left over from making your salt art. The salt should absorb the water almost instantly.
Watercolor paint is made of mostly—you guessed it—water! When you touch the salt with a brush full of watercolor paint, the salt, like a sponge, quickly absorbs the paint. There’s no paint left over to reach the paper below.
Here’s another way to use salt and watercolor paint to make art! Use your paintbrush to paint a large area on a sheet of watercolor paper, making sure to use plenty of water. While the paint is still wet, sprinkle a little kosher salt onto the area, and then observe. The salt will create a pretty pattern as it absorbs the water in the paint!