Rock Painting

Rock painting is a wonderful way to get really creative. Your designs can be used as paper weights, door stops, colourful additions to your garden, or simply displayed and admired on a bookshelf.


  • rocks
  • acrylic paint
  • paint brushes in a variety of sizes
  • sponges
  • pencil


This project is great for all ages, and ideas for rock painting are endless. You can keep it simple and make patterns with dots, triangles and stripes. You can paint your name, or silly expressions like ‘hard as rock’, ‘on the rocks’, or ‘you rock’. Animals, insects, fruit and flowers are also great choices. Why not create a family of rocks that have funny faces, or paint a special one for when you play hop scotch. You can even make a crazy, long caterpillar by painting one stone with a face, followed by many other ones in different colours to create the body.

Collecting the rocks is part of the fun. You can stroll along the beach where you’ll find some beautiful, smooth specimens, or head to your local garden center where you can purchase them. Make sure they are clean and dry before working with them. Scrub them with soap and water and allow them to dry in the sun or near a heater. The oven can also be used on a low temperature.

Before painting, you might want to sketch your idea on the stone in pencil. I recommend using acrylic paints since they are long lasting. Colours may fade somewhat if your pet rocks are kept outdoors, but ours have lasted for years. Tempera will eventually peel off, even indoors. I have also used markers like Sharpies, which provide great results and more control for little hands. Or you can start with paint, and save the marker for any outlining you need to do. Layering colours with sponges also creates a great effect.

The following websites show images of rock art which includes stone carvings and cave paintings from prehistoric times:

Cave Painting

Lascaux Cave Paintings

Altamira Cave Paintings

Aboriginal Australian Rock Art


Painting on Rocks For Kids

Painted Rocks

The Art of Painting Animals on Rocks


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Filed under Art and Nature, painting, rock painting

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