Chalk art makes my heart happy.
This week has been crazy, and it’s only Wednesday. Sure a glass of wine [or 3] at night can help to de-stress after a long day, but sometimes I like to start the day off relaxed by letting my creative juices flow. A little chalk dust and a few cups of coffee later and I was ready to start my day.
I’ve posted previously how to make your own chalkboard wall, but I figured I’d do a quick tutorial on how I actually create my chalkboard art for the average person. [let’s be real – no one has time or sanity for that elaborate fancy shit] I’ve seen people print out their designs and cover the back of the paper lightly with chalk dust then trace over it, I prefer to do mine all by hand. I find it therapeutic to see what you picture in your head come to life.
First things first, you need a clean chalkboard to start with. While those tiny fingers and hand prints that are smeared all through your previous artwork are pretty fucking adorable, it’s time for something new. Use a wet washcloth to wipe the board clean. I let it dry and sometimes have to do it again if there are any color smears left.
Now that you have your clean slate, you need your tools to create your art. I use plain ol’ sidewalk chalk. Different sizes and different colors open you to a world of texture and designs. I’ve seen others use chalk pens, I think those are great if you’re creating more permanent signs for weddings, etc. but I like the look and rustic feel of chalk.
Next you need your design, quote, saying, etc. Since it’s not quiet fall yet and is still reaching the 90’s here – I’m not ready for a fall board, but wanted something new. I settled on a short, sweet quote “home is where we are“. Pinterest has great ideas if you aren’t feeling super creative.
While I did not for this particular design, for my longer sayings I will use a magazine or ruler to draw very faint lines to keep everything straight and spaced properly. Once you’ve determined your design, take the thin white chalk and sketch it out lightly. Even if I plan to have the end result in color, I always sketch in white. [it leaves the least trace of residue on the board if you mess up] I will use a wet washcloth to erase and correct as needed until I’m happy with the result. Nobody’s perfect the first [or second, or third] try! Don’t make this stressful with any of your OCD tendencies of trying to make it perfect and symmetrical – it’s art, after all.
Once I’m happy with the design and placement, I go over it heavily in whatever color it’s going to be. This artwork I decided was all white. Tip: Trace your designs forwards and backwards so that the chalk is hitting the grooves in the board from both directions. This will help your artwork look bold and clean.
Once it’s been traced both directions I then go back in and add any details, adjust line thickness, or draw accents. Use water a Q-tips to help clean up any areas you may have made mistakes. Enjoy your artwork until the little hands find it again!
In case you haven’t seen them – here are some of my favorite art creations!