Archive for June 23, 2008

How to paint clouds on a wall

Whatever the age of your child, you can’t go wrong with clouds for a room theme.
You can even create some of your child’s favourite shapes in the clouds which I will show you in my next post

Clouds on a wall

This is my all time favourite mural theme!

How to paint a cloud wall mural

There are many methods for painting clouds.
Below is one way and a description of how to do it.

There are other methods which you may find more suited to you for instance,  Cloudwash is a kit that not only teaches you how to paint clouds on walls, but contains the paints, video, gloves, cloths and tools to complete the project.

Cloudwash kitCloud wash kit

This cloudwash kit can be purchased from the  Magic Mural factory

My Cloud painting technique

Personally I prefer to use water based emulsion paints (acrylic paint/house paint) with a water based glaze. Available at good DIY stores and craft suppliers.

You will need

  • Sky blue, satin finish paint
  • White satin finish emulsion paint
  • Glaze
  • Paint tray
  • Measuring jug or cup
  • Sea sponges, hand sized and smaller. 2 or 3 pieces of different sizes will be sufficient
  • A piece of cheesecloth, about 18″ x 24″ inches big enough to form into a handsized ball.
  • A piece of board approximately 3′ x 2′ or heavy cardboard pieces for practice.
  • Pictures of clouds for reference.

Lets get started

  1. Paint your background sky a lovely sky blue. At the same time, paint a piece of board to use to practise on your cloud-painting technique. Let your sky colour dry for 24 hours before starting the clouds.
  2. Take your white paint and mix it with your glaze using a 4 to 1 ratio
    (for example 1 cup of glaze to 1/4 cup of white paint) Mix thoroughly and pour into paint tray.
  3. Wet your piece of cheesecloth with clean water and wring out thoroughly. Keep this near at hand while you paint your clouds. You will use this to soften your sponge marks.
  4. Keep any pictures of clouds you have collected handy , so that you can refer to them for cloud shape ideas.
    Wet a piece of sponge with water, and wring it out completely.
    Dab it into the white paint, and remove excess paint on the edge of your tray.
    Use your painted blue board to practice forming clouds.
  5. First, play around with the sponge, dabbing on the paint. See what marks you can make by vaying the pressure of your dabs, twist and turn the sponge as you experiment.
  6. Take a look at clouds, they generally have a flat bottom.
    That’s where we start.
    With your sponge, start dabbing on the board in a fairly straight line for the bottom of the cloud. Then start dabbing paint above this line, twisting and turning the sponge as you dab to create texture and variation.
  7. When you are satisfied with the general shape of the cloud, take your cheesecloth and make a ball with it. Dab gently over the cloud, softening the paint to make it more ‘cloudy’ looking.
  8. Build up the cloud with more dabbing towards the center adding texture and fading out towards the edge of the cloud. The centre of the cloud should be more dense. Soften the effect again with your cloth. Use this technique with all the clouds.
  9. When you are happy with your clouds on the practice board, head for your wall! Don’t make your first cloud dead center of the wall. it is not visually pleasing and looks unnatural. Start off-centre and down a bit either to the left or right.
    The size of your clouds depends on the size of your room, but if you take a room of about 8×10′ you could make your biggest clouds 20-24inches long and your smallest about 5-10inches. This is just an approximate guide and you can adjust your sizes to fit the size of your room.Don’t paint the clouds all the same sizes, look at nature, they are all different. Start with your biggest clouds and dot them randomly around the room. Stand back and look at how the wall looks.
  10. Fill in the spaces in between the big clouds with medium ones and then small wispy clouds. Keep standing back to look at the whole effect.Paint clouds wrapping round corners, to create continuity, around light switches, wall lights and whatever other features you have in the room.
    Stand back and admire.

Over my next few posts I will show you how to add cloud shapes and other features to your clouds to add an extra dimension to the mural. After that we will look at other ways to create a cloud mural, so keep checking back to see what’s new.


June 23, 2008 at 8:17 am 3 comments

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