COLOR IT! Most spray and acrylic paints will adhere to Styrofoam (tm) brand foam. Apply paper mache, plaster, or joint compound as a covering before painting to get a smooth surface. Insert a toothpick or skewer into the foam form to use as a handle when painting. Let dry according to the package instructions.
That's it! Your foam can now be painted like any other surface. Use caution not to burn yourself when using a heat source near your work.
Acrylic paint sticks nicely to styrofoam and is thus the ideal paint to use on it. Because styrofoam is so porous, you'll probably need many coats of paint to cover it. Apply the paint with a foam brush and wait for the first layer to dry before applying more. When painting the face, make sure to include the eyes, nose, and mouth.
You can also use watercolors or oils if you prefer. These paints are not as durable over time but they look pretty good once dried.
Finally, you can use spray paint but be careful not to get any in the eyes. This type of paint is not meant to be mixed or brushed so it needs to be sprayed directly from the can.
Have fun experimenting with different types of paint!
If normal paint is applied to Styrofoam without being sealed, it will eat away at the foam and cause it to melt. Properly sealing the Styrofoam first eliminates this difficulty and provides a rather flat surface on which to paint.
You can seal Styrofoam with any of the materials listed below. The choice of material depends on how much protection you need from the elements as well as what kind of painting you plan to do later. If you want to paint a glossy finish, for example, you'll need to use a high-quality acrylic resin.
The best way to protect an object such as Styrofoam is by using a protective coating. These days, there are many different coatings available for various purposes. Some examples include: spray paint for temporary decoration; enamel for long-lasting protection; and acrylic resin for a shiny finish.
Sealing an object before applying a protective coating ensures that the coating will remain in place. This is particularly important if you plan to do some sanding or other mechanical work after applying the paint layer.
When painting objects made out of styrene foam, wear protective clothing and equipment. Use caution not to get any liquids on your skin because they will likely not come off easily. Also, be sure to take all safety precautions while working with chemicals.
Water-based or acrylic craft paints are suitable for painting on styrofoam. Water-based paints, particularly poster paints, are great for younger children since they can get a really excellent and thick coating of paint on the polystyrene form. Acrylic paints are more flexible so they're good for older children who want to create more detailed designs.
You should choose smooth surfaces for your paintings that will not wear away with time. Polystyrene takes on color well and does not fade like many other materials might. If you want your painting to look better over time then you should consider using colors that will change appearance as they absorb light energy from the sun. For example, black has this effect because it absorbs light energy very well but also changes color when it is exposed to air for a long period of time.
You should always test out the material you intend to use for your project with something non-toxic such as paper and pencil lead before starting any work. This ensures that there are no risks involved with using this material in your art project.
Styrofoam is useful for making models and toys. You can use it to make sculptures by melting it down and shaping it with tools such as knives and axes. When it has set again you can paint it or add details using modeling clay.
Color the Styrofoam with a combination of glue and food colors. 1 tablespoon glue + a few drops food coloring gel Roll the foam in the mixture and place it on a drying rack to dry. This quantity is enough to cover one styrofoam ball.
You can also use liquid colors for this project. Just make sure that they are water-based.
The result of the gluing process will be a colored piece of foam that you can use to decorate your home or play area. Let the kids come up with different ideas for using their colored foam balls!
Here are some more fun projects that you can do with your children:
Make a car wash game: Use plastic bottles as cars and fill them with water. The kids will love playing this new game!
Build a house: Using cardboard boxes, tape, and markers, build yourself a house. You can include rooms for eating, sleeping, etc.
Visit local parks and gardens: Plan a trip to a nearby park or garden and have fun exploring together. Look for plants that are not usually seen together and try to figure out why they are growing near each other!
Have a movie night: Put on some popcorn and watch your favorite movies together.