These beautiful seahorses are adapted from an amazing torn paper collage I found at Torn Paper Paintings by Wanda Edwards. I thought it might be fun to recreate this seahorse in a way that children could color and cut with ease so I drew a template based on this seahorse and decided to color it with bleeding tissue paper instead. It’s not as stunning as Ms. Edwards torn paper art, but I think your children will be amazed at the work they can do, and this technique might inspire them to start making their own shapes from paper as well.
Seahorse Template & Materials:
- Seahorse Template
- Bleeding Tissue Paper
- Circle Punch (Optional)
- Black Construction Paper
- Pen, Glue, Scissors
Seahorse Craft Tutorial:
You can watch the video above or follow the following steps to make your stunning seahorse!
Step 1: Print your Template
Print up your seahorse template on cardstock or watercolor paper. You will need one template per child, and your final project will be facing the opposite direction of the seahorse template.
Cut out punch out small bits of bleeding tissue paper. Bleeding tissue paper is different than standard tissue paper. You can purchase bleeding Tissue paper at your local craft store on with the resource link above
Step 2: Plan Your Color Blending
Take a moment to look at your seahorse and decide what colors you might put around what part. I suggest you encourage children to start with warm colors on top, cool colors on
Turn your seahorse template over so that you’re working on the backside of the paper. Using a small paintbrush and a dab of water begin arranging your tissue paper onto your paper.
Step 3: Bring on the Color!
As your paper gets wet it will start to bleed the color and blend with surrounding colors for a stunning effect. Don’t be tempted to peel off the color too soon! You’ll want to let it dry so that as much color as possible is transferred to your paper.
Step 4: Let it Dry! Then, Peel it Off!
Once you are sure that you’ve covered your entire seahorse you’ll want to let it dry. If you are unsure if you covered your seahorse template in entirity you can always lift your paper to see what still needs covered.
As soon as the tissue paper is dried, you can gently peel off the circles to reveal the beautiful color blends that transferred to your paper.
Step 5: Cut Out Your Shapes
After your paper has dried completely (use a hair dryer if you are impatient or doing this in a single classroom setting) you can begin to cut out your shapes. I suggest cutting these out one at a time assembling them carefully in the correct order. Younger children will need help with the cutting so be sure to plan for that if you’re doing this project with multiple young students.
Step 6: Assemble Your Seahorse
Using a piece of black construction paper as your background, begin to assemble your seahorse parts. You may want to print a second copy of the seahorse template to use as a reference guide. Be sure to leave black spaces shinning through just as in the template.
As you add more pieces you’ll see your seahorse come to life. To give your seahorse a 3-d effect, you can only glue the center of each piece, and allow the edges to lift up and away from the paper.
Step 7: Add Details
Using a fine black marker draw lines, dots, and circles along the edges of your seahorse. This will give your stunning ocean creature some personality!
Step 8: Put Your Seahorse on Display!
This is a frame-worthy art project that makes an excellent gift for Mom, or Grandma.
Looking for more art projects you can try with bleeding tissue paper? Try our Taj Mahal Art Tutorial for Kids!