Easter Cross Art Project For Kids- Oil Pastel “Smudge” Technique With Resist

I absolutely love this cross art project- it is so perfect for any age group from preschoolers through adults, and the results are easy for every age level to achieve! (And as ya’ll are about to see by these pictures, I did this project years ago and never posted it. So enjoy Violet’s little baby face. She’s getting to be quite a young lady these days!)
Supplies Needed:
  • Card stock
  • Painters tape or washi tape (you need a tape that will easily peel back off of the paper, so regular tape is not a good choice)
  • Scissors
  • Oil Pastels
  • Watercolor paints and paintbrush

Start by cutting 2 pieces of tape, one longer than the other to create a cross, and sticking them on your paper in a cross shape. If you’re not sure if your tape will come back off the paper well, you can stick it to your clothes first, peel it off, and then stick it on the paper. This will help it to be less sticky. I recommend this step even for painter’s tape. For younger children, you can put the cross on the paper ahead of time for them.

Next, take your oil pastels and make small marks all around the cross in bright colors! Any combination of colors will work. 🙂 Let the kids do their own thing, even if you think it’s ugly. It’s their artwork. Make your own if you’re feeling tempted to meddle (I ALWAYS do this- it keeps my hands out of my kid’s work lol)

When the colors go all the way around, start smudging them with your fingers, spreading them outwardly from your cross shape. LEAVE YOUR TAPE IN PLACE!

After you have smudged all the oil pastels, it’s time to start painting! The idea is to paint green watercolors at the bottom for the grass, and blue at the top for the sky. Don’t worry- your tape and oil pastels are going to totally resist the watercolor paint, leaving you with a striking result.

We always have a “special” set of watercolor paints for the toddlers who insist on mixing… 😉 That way no one has to share with them.

When you’re finished with all your paint, you’re ready to remove the tape and reveal your beautiful artwork!

All of these came out adorable, no matter the age of the child. So cute!


When kids are giving an accomplishment project and they achieve desirable results, it builds their self-confidence, and I love to watch this!

Also, it’s hard to tell in the pictures, but we used glittery watercolors and they really are beautiful.
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