Crayon American Flag DIY Tutorial
As many of you may know, I have been working on a series of Crayon Paintings over the last few months. Some of you may have even read about them in previous Crayon Art posts. With the Fourth of July holiday around the corner, I’ve decided to play with my process a little further and create a crayon American flag using the melted crayon technique. I thought it would be nice to share this project in time for the holiday so families and friends could try to make their own crayon flags over the celebratory weekend. You too, can have the coolest decoration for your patriotic celebration! 🙂
Below is a step by step DIY tutorial for Crayon American Flags:
What You’ll Need:
~ Multiple shades of red and blue crayons. One white crayon… I used pinks, magentas, and a little purple for my reds, so don’t be afraid to get creative.
~ 1 Rectangular canvas. I used a 36 x 24 canvas
~ Hair Dryer
~ Heat Gun (Optional)
~ Exacto Knife
~ large piece of cardboard and or paper (to cover your workspace)
~ 1 inch masking tape
~ 3 inch masking tape
~ Piece of paper
~ Measuring Tape
~ Yardstick or a long straight edge
How to Make:
1~ Lay out a large piece of paper or cardboard to cover your workspace
2~ Lay your canvas on your designated cardboard workspace. Grab a pen and your measuring tape.
3~ Measure the shorter side of the canvas and divide by 13 to figure out the width of each stripe. My stripes were 1.8 inches thick.
4~ If you’re great at math or with measurements then this step might be easy for you, but if not heres a tip to make your life easier. Take a piece of paper and your ruler and measure from the edge. With a pencil mark your width… Again, my mark was 1.8 inches up the paper.
5~ Take a pair of scissors and cut the piece of paper so it represents the width of the stripe. At the end of this step you should have a piece of paper the width of your stripes.
6~ Take your piece of paper and pencil and starting from the edge of the canvas, make a light mark at the edge of the paper.
7~ Move the piece of paper so it now starts at the mark you just made, and make another mark on the other side of the paper.
8~ Continue step 7 until you’ve reached the other side of the canvas… When done you should have 13 marks down one side of the canvas.
9~ Repeat steps 6-8 on the opposite side of the canvas to guarantee even stripes.
10~ Take your straight edge and line up the marks on both sides of the canvas. With your pencil, lightly draw a line connecting the two marks making your first stripe. Continue until all of your stripes are outlined.
11~ Because both the top and bottom stripes will be red, start with the first stripe and lightly make an R (which indicates red) and continue marking every other stripe with an R. This will help prevent confusion in the future.
12~ The blue portion of the flag stops at the 4th red stripe, so make a slightly darker mark at the edge of that stripe.
13~ The width of the blue section can be tricky to get perfect. It’s less than half the total width of the flag. I’ve included a photo of standard flag measurements / ratios. Make your measurement and mark your canvas at the top in the appropriate place. Do the same thing at the base of the 4th stripe to make sure your blue box is straight. When done… Stand back and “eyeball” the measurements to make sure it looks correct.
14~ Take your straight edge, and connect the marks at the top and on the 4th stripe to outline your blue area. With the eraser, lightly remove the lines within the blue section of the flag.
15~ Using the 3 inch masking tape, cover the blue portion of the flag. Make sure the tape is nice and tight on the edges bordering stripes. Slide your fingernail or something plastic down the edge of the tape to ensure it’s adhered to the canvas completely.
16~ Take the 1 inch masking tape and cover the area of the all white stripes. Run your finger along all edges again to ensure adhesion
17~ Gather all of your red toned crayons. Don’t be afraid to stray from red; I used magentas, fuschias and some purple tones in my red stripes.
18~ Take the paper off (shell) all the crayons with your exacto knife.
19~ Prepare your hair dryer and your red crayons for melting.
20~Heat your crayon away from the canvas by blowing hot air across it until it’s nice and melty. If you heat your crayon too close to the canvas, you can melt your painting.
Apply the melted crayon to the canvas by rolling it between your fingers while touching the canvas… All while continuing to apply heat with the blowdryer. (The melted portion of the crayon should literally be rolled onto the canvas) The wax will roll right off of the crayon and onto the canvas. If you want to deepen the color continue to do this until you reach your desired saturation.
Note~ Always keep your heat on Hot, but change the speeds (High, Low) to spread the wax in different ways. Low is useful to apply more wax and build texture, and high is best used for spreading the color or thinning. Also, you can use the “cool” or “cold” setting on your blow dryer, It will cool the wax instantly and it really helps with control.
I start with a darker shade as my base. Really lather a bunch on there, and move it with the heat of your hair dryer. Then I add a lighter shade and do the same thing. This will give it a bit of a watercolor look. Once you start to play, you’ll get a feel for what works best for your design.
21~ Fill in all of your red stripes. This will take a few hours so be patient and put on some good music.
22~ After you’ve finished your red stripes, its time to remove the tape from the blue covered area of the canvas. My tape overlapped slighly so I used an exacto knife and VERY LIGHTLY made a cut on the tape where the red & white stripes met the blue tape… BE SURE TO CUT JUST THE TAPE… NOT THE CANVAS… This allows your to remove the tape from the blue area of the flag and keep the tape down the stripes without pulling it up accidentally.
23~ Remove the tape from the blue section. Be careful and take your time.
24~ Now it’s time to protect what you’ve already done…Take your 3 inch masking tape and cover the entire canvas except for the blue portion which you just uncovered.
25~ Gather all of your blue shades. Like I said before, don’t be afraid to get creative. Shell all of the crayons if you haven’t done so already.
26~ Start applying the blue shades to the canvas the same way we’ve talked about in this tutorial and the other Crayon Art tutorials.
Note~ Once you get to the edge where the blue meets the red stripes, you can grab something COLD like an ice pack wrapped in paper towels (must be dry) and place it on the edge of the red stripes in the area you are working on. This will help prevent your red stripes from melting when your are adding the blue crayon with heat right next to it.
27~ Once your blue section is completed, take out a white crayon and your heat gun ( or hair dryer). On low, heat up your white crayon and hold above the canvas. the crayon will drip, and create your first star. Continue until you have 50 white drips. Remember, it doesn’t have to be perfect.
28~ Let the canvas cool completely (30 minutes)
29~ Very carefully remove all of the tape covering the canvas. Continue to remove the tape covering the white stripes.
30~ Hang on the wall and enjoy your new crayon flag!