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DIY Outdoor Art

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During the winter months, it’s easy to feel cooped up – after all, outside it’s chilly, trees are dead, and everything is grey with rain or snow. So, obviously like me you’re inside, curled into a tiny bundle under several blankets unable to stop Netflix from automatically streaming several episodes of the Walking Dead at a time.

When you can’t go outside for long periods of time, sometimes it helps to bring in some reminders of warmer times. We’ve touched on this before in damn easy decorating, but it’s worth revisting: Nature makes for some great indoor art. Even in wintertime, when flowers are scarce, it’s easy to find ways to make everything feel a bit more natural.

Painted Rocks: Seriously, how cute are the owl rocks? Pretty damn cute. Grab some rocks and wash and dry them and then paint them in bright colors. Most of the ones I’ve seen are of owls, birds, insects like beetles and butterflies, or flowers and plants but if that’s not your vibe you can always go with patterns of triangles or circles to create abstract art. Rocks can also be collected in a frame (with a wire mesh panel) to create a rock bath mat.

Painted Branches: This is pretty straightforward – grab some branches, and spray paint ’em. Monochrome colors look classy and a bit stark here, neon and metallics will catch the eye. Branches can also be broken down into roughly the same size and wrapped around thick candles.

Leaf Art: There are a few ways to go about this one. For the colorful leaves, first paint a canvas a bright color and let dry. Then set down your leaves, and spray paint a light or neutral shade over the whole thing. Gently peel off the leaves and let dry. Alternatively you can skip the base coat and just lay down the leaves and spray paint in bursts around the leaves; this works well with metallics as well.

If you’re into simple art with a lot of white space, consider simply tying some colorful leaves to a plain canvas using string or twine. And if you can’t find any bit of nature at all, grab some crayons, pastels, or colored pencils and buy an used book with big pages. Draw leaves on the pages, then tear them out and decorate the walls to make your own book forest.


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Amber Bouman - Crafty & Cashless

Amber Bouman - Crafty & Cashless

A freelance writer, blogger and poet based in San Francisco, Amber has written for PC World, InfoWorld, and the 16th & Mission Review. She has performed at City Hall, Litquake, the Brainwash, 16th & Mission, BlueSix, and SFSU among other places. Amber is also consummate fan of swearing, organizational freak, yoga practitioner, music geek, caffeine addict, and tattoo enthusiast who enjoys platform shoes, making out, thumb wrestling and fighting the good fight. She owns a bicycle named Gretel, a motor scooter named Elroy and a cat named Simon. She can be found in various virtual locations all over your interwebs.