Easy DIY Abstract Art for $5

While doing my $80 half-bath makeover, I wanted to add some colour via canvas art to the room, but obviously wasn’t about to drop my entire budget (times five) on a real piece of canvas art by a real artist. So I made one.

I’ve done it a few times before with varying levels of success so why not do it again? I found a tutorial online where she had used artist spatulas (probably not what they’re called, but whatever) exclusively. Of course I can’t *find* that tutorial now to share with you.

I found a pack of four in different sizes at Dollarama for $3 (although I’m not counting that in my bathroom total because it’s a supply I’ll use again and again). I also used the acrylic paint from Dollarama – black and white I already had, then I grabbed a bottle of light blue as well. That was $1.25. I *also* used a canvas from Dollarama, and no they haven’t sponsored me, I just want you to know where to get this stuff. That was $1.25.

Pro (haha) Tip: GO EASY ON THE BLACK. I did one of these for our guest room (pre-spatula days) and put it in there and immediately was like “annnnnd nope” and took it down. I had over-blacked it and it looked too harsh. That’s a re-do for another time. So I squeezed some dobs on the canvas…

How to make your own (DIY) painted canvas abstract art for $5.

…and smoothed it out (but not too much) by using different spatulas in different sizes, different angles and different directions. You can see my workspace here on Harrison’s playmat while he was in bed for the night. I just taped it down with masking tape.

How to make your own (DIY) painted canvas abstract art for $5.

I was conscious about where the colours met because I wanted mostly crisp colours instead of a bunch of wet paint just blending into one another. I let them dry (my husband was watching Wild at the time, so I sat down to bawl my face off and let the paint dry a bit before resuming the project) and then stepped back and looked at the canvas to see what was missing. I was conscious that I’d be placing it at the back of a shelf with something covering part of the canvas, so I took that into account when choosing the negative space.

Once things were mostly dry (the next day), I went back in and did my blending between the colours and added a bit of metallic blue (a mixture of white metallic and flat blue). Then just freshened up some of the edges and added a bit more here or there until it was what I wanted it to be.

And voila. For $5 I had a fun canvas art for my bathroom and I didn’t even have to search forever to find one that went with the decor.  I love how the spatula made the paint look and I was sure to leave a bit of texture in there instead of smoothing it all out flat.

What do you think? Have you done anything like this??

Add a splash of colour and class to your house on a SERIOUS budget with your own DIY canvas abstract art.


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