The Magic of the Smush (Painting)

We are almost two weeks into our 100 Day Project and I have to say that smush paintings have been one of our favorites so far. What are smush paintings, you ask? They are a style of painting where you lay blobs of paint onto paper then cover it with wax paper and SMUSH the paint down to create beautiful abstract paintings.

The baby even got in on the fun and got to smush her painting in a zip-top bag.

I loved how easy they were to create, how beautiful the end product was, AND how contained the mess was. Anna loved throwing caution to the wind and taking a bunch of painting and globbing it around on the paper. We all loved how satisfying it was to smush and spread the blobs of paint around under the wax paper.

Still not sure about it?

Here’s a video of Anna, Mia, and I making our smush paintings. (And if you’re not already following us on YouTube, you should be! We’ve been sharing lots of videos from our 100 Day Project.)

How To Smush Paintings


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  1. Get everything set up. Tape your paper to the baking tray (or simply lay it on a covered table). Lay out your paints. Get your zip-top bag ready if you are doing this with a younger child. Get several sheets of paper ready to grab and go.
  2. Put dots of different colored paint on your paper until you are happy with what you have.
  3. Rip a piece of wax paper a little larger than the size of your paper and set it on top. Smush (and gently rub) with your hands so that the paint begins to spread out and connect. (See the video if you’re unsure of what to do here.)
  4. Slowly peel up the wax paper and set it down with paint side up.
  5. If you have a lot of extra paint on your wax paper, take another sheet of paper and lay it on top, rubbing the back so that you are creating a “print”. Peel away slowly and set down paint side up to dry.
  6. Once paint has dried, pull off the tape and marvel at your creation. Frame it, if you feel so compelled, or gift it to your favorite friend or family member.

hi, i’m emily and i love making things with my hands. i always have a project (or ten) in the works and love to draw, paint, cook, sew, crochet, cross stitch, and make soap. this year, i’m focusing my creative efforts on trying new things and just plain having fun.

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