A Marbled Masterpiece

Try this fun and easy art project from the
Vibe of Portland Art Studio with your little one.

This art technique is super simple and uses items that you probably already have at home. It is also easy enough that kids as young as 3 can create a fridge-worthy piece of art.

Hands On: A Marbled Masterpiece. Metro Parent Portland Oregon. September 2014. by Vibe of PortlandSupplies

    • Plastic tablecloth, or work outside on a surface that you can easily wash off
    • Unscented shaving cream
    • Food coloring (at least 3 colors)
    • Butter knife
    • Shallow pan/tray or cookie sheet with a lip (a 9 x 13 pan will work great)
    • Rectangular piece of wood or a spatula
    • 8½ x 11 white printer paper, or any light colored paper
    • Container for excess shaving cream


  1. Spray shaving cream into the tray and smooth it out a ½-inch thickness (a).
  2. Drip food coloring around on top of the shaving cream (b).
  3. Take the butter knife and put it in the shaving cream straight up and down and pull it through the shaving cream to “marble” the food coloring in the shaving cream.
  4. Move the butter knife from one end of the tray to the other and back again to create the marbling effect. Tip: Pulling the tool through the shaving cream will help create the marbling effect, but stirring can muddy and mix the colors to create a less brightly colored finished product.
  5. Take 1 piece of printer paper and gently set it on top of the shaving cream. Pat it gently onto the shaving cream/food coloring.
  6. Slowly remove the paper and set the paper shaving cream side up on the table (c).
  7. Use the piece of wood or spatula to remove the excess shaving cream and put it in the extra container (d).
  8. Set paper aside to dry.

Hands On: A Marbled Masterpiece. Metro Parent Portland Oregon. September 2014. by Vibe of Portland

You can do two to three prints with each shaving cream layer before needing to add more food coloring and re-marble it. After a couple times of adding food coloring, you may need to add more shaving cream to the tray. The added layers of marbling can add depth to the artwork.

Experiment and have fun!

Idea from the Vibe of Portland Children’s Art Studio Laura Streib, Founder and Executive Director

Vibe of Portland is a 501c3 visual arts and music nonprofit with the mission to “Empower Portland’s Underserved Youth through art and music.” They primarily offer programming during and after school at a variety of K-8 schools in the Portland Metro area where little to no arts education is available. Their partner schools are currently located mainly in North Portland and SE Portland. In 2011, Vibe opened up a children’s fine-arts studio located at TaborSpace in SE Portland to offer arts education classes to children ages 3 and up. The Vibe Art Studio offers classes to preschool, home school and elementary age children through weekly classes, workshops, camps and open studios.

Check out their website for more information, www.vibepdx.org.

Click here to see more great content from our September 2014 issue.

PDX Parent Staff
PDX Parent Staff

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