When it comes to innovation, parents can get pretty crafty with just a handful of items. Case in point: these killer outdoor art studios, set up by parents for their creative geniuses. Scroll down to see the ideas and get inspired to make one yourself.

windowpainting_vickymessforless_easycleanup_outdoorart_national_redtricyclephoto: Mess for Less

1. Use the Windows as a Creative Space
Washing windows just got a lot more creative. Give your kids brushes and spray bottles, and watch them paint, clear, and paint again. Head to Mess for Less for ideas on how to get the paint/water mixture just right.

photo: Kids Play Box

2. Recycled Box Art Studio
An ordinary cardboard box easily transforms into an extraordinary art studio by adding a few supplies and your artist’s latest creations. Head over to Kids Play Box to see how to make your own portable gallery.

DIYbackyardchalkboard_amandahunter_backyardbeauty_outdoorfun_national_redtricyclephoto: Amanda Hunter via Dallas Moms Blog

3. Chalkboard
Color, erase, repeat. An oversized chalkboard makes a great reusable canvas, and doubles as a scoreboard for afternoon games. Head over to Dallas Moms Blog to find out how to personalize and hang one in your backyard.

photo: Meri Cherry

4. Garden Art Studio
This amazing backyard studio was built by the very handy dad over at Meri Cherry. The lucky artists in residence love having their own creative hideaway. Head over to the blog for a peek inside this magical space and a look at some of their awesome projects.

Babble Dabble Do Design Fortphoto: Baddle Dabble Do

5. Design Fort
A step up from a cardboard box, this outdoor fort is an art project in itself. Babble Dabble Do used a kit to create the frame for this awesome playhouse, draped it with butcher paper and let aspiring designers go to work personalizing the space inside and out. Head over to the blog to find materials and sources.

photo: Pink Stripey Socks

6. Cardboard Easel
This awesome DIY easel from Pink Stripey Socks is super easy and inexpensive to make with very few materials. Plus, it can accommodate up to three artists at once! Grab a cardboard box and check out the blog to learn to make your own.

photo: Not-So-SAHM via Honest to Nod

7. Balcony Studio
Even if space is at a premium, it’s still possible to set up an outdoor creative space for your little artist. Not-So-SAHM designed this craft room on the balcony of her home. Head over to Honest to Nod for a closer look at the space.

photo: No Time for Flash Cards

8. Upcycled Water Table
No Time for Flash Cards took finger painting to a whole new level by using her daughter’s water table as sensory tub painting project. Find all the materials you’ll need to create your own colorful canvases here.

All the Little Lights easelphoto: All the Little Lights

9. DIY Plexiglass Easel
Thinking beyond dry erase and chalkboards, All the Little Lights crafted her daughter’s easel out of plexiglass. The attached paint palette is made from a plastic vegetable tray, great for separating paint colors. Easy to wash and reuse, it’s the perfect outdoor canvas for artists of all ages.

Tinklerlab Garden Art Studiophoto: Tinkerlab

10. Picnic Art Studio
You never know when inspiration will strike, especially when you’re out exploring nature. Tinkerlab set up an impromptu art studio using just a picnic blanket and a few select supplies. Find tips for setting up a garden studio here.

photo: Doodlebuds

11. Slate Painting
The mom behind Doodlebuds stumbled upon this interactive gallery wall during a visit to the Children’s Museum of Manhattan. The medium of choice: water. These quick-drying framed pieces of slate make for perfect reusable canvases, and can easily be recreated in your backyard. Just remember to take a photo of each masterpiece before it dries! The exhibit served as inspiration when creating an outdoor art space for her son. Check it out here!

outdoor-art-station-for-preschool-tinkering-wallphoto: Where Imagination Grows

12. Art Station
Where Imagination Grows proves it’s easy to create a colorful outdoor art space without breaking the bank. A simple wooden shelf and metal buckets in an assortment of bright hues and patterns house the supplies, and an upcycled coffee table is the perfect height for young artists. Check out the rest of this outdoor craft corner and find a list of materials you’ll need to create your own here.

Which outdoor art space would you like to create for your kids? Tell us in the comments. 

— Lauren Hill and Gabby Cullen





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