Chalk Mandalas

Though summer is starting to fade, we still spend a lot of time outdoors every day. Now that the heat is no longer blistering in the afternoon, it’s a wonderful time to work on outdoor art projects.


Chalk Mandalas


One of our favorite outdoor art activities is covering our patio with chalk drawings.


Chalk drawing in this setting allows for big pictures or small pictures. As such, it enables my boys to make art on a much bigger scale than they can make anywhere in our house. Our patio has been home to gigantic sting rays (6 feet long and 4 feet wide!), a starry galaxy, lots of hearts, special messages, countless airplanes, and generally a whole lot of random drawings. A few weeks ago, we even attempted a life-size family portrait.


Chalk allows you to fill in spaces quickly, but it also allows you to fill in as many details as you want. Drawing with chalk requires focused attention and develops eye-hand coordination. It involves the imagination, allows you to express your feelings, and can build friendship and community when you’re all working together. Notably, especially when you’ve got a wide age range in the house, all ages can participate.


Best of all, chalk drawing on a sidewalk or patio is very forgiving. Because sidewalk chalk is inherently a temporary medium (unless you choose to immortalize your drawings by taking a photograph), it allows us to be free with our art. It’s easy to move past mistakes when you know that an afternoon thunderstorm or a squirt of a hose or your little brother’s dancing will clear your canvas within the next day or two.


What are some of your favorite outdoor art projects?

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