Recycle watercolour paintings – Top 10 ways

Don’t throw your ‘failed’ watercolour paintings in the bin — recycle them!

Jan T’s top 10 ways to recycle watercolour paintings

There are many ways to recycle a painting that you are dissatisfied with, including:

  1. Tear it into pieces for collage.
  2. Alternatively, find an area you do like and crop it into a smaller painting.
  3. Glue painted rice paper to mask the poorly executed areas.
    Note the ragged edged pieces of tan, and lilac rice paper in the background on this recycled watercolour painting.

    Recycle watercolour paintings Doodlescape Mountains detail
    Doodlescape Mountains detail
  4. Paint over some parts with gouache. Although John Lovett does not paint gouache on his paintings for this reason, I was inspired to fix one of mine this way with white opaque watercolour paint, and then it sold.
  5. Paint over some/all of it with opaque paints.
  6. Draw/write with watercolour pens on top of the painting. This painting was also successfully recycled this way.

    Recycle watercolour paintings - Octopus garden detail
    Octopus garden detail
  7. Cut into smaller ‘paintings’ to glue to greeting card blanks.
  8.  Another technique to try is to journal on top with markers and use the piece in your art journal.
  9. Use the back to start over.
  10. Stencil over the parts you dislike with very diluted acrylic paint.

New art from discarded paintings

As a result of rescuing your binned artwork, you will be surprised how much you like the recycled watercolour paintings, and your friends will love receiving art on the cards you send.

Former quilt artist, now a painter having a great time creating art! For more than thirty years, I have been teaching (make that enthusing) people about making quilts, and am now retired! And now I make art every day!

1 Comment

  1. Dave short
    November 30, 2016

    I love the balance of colour making this painting so intriguing and Interesting , simply beautiful.


Want to say something about this?

Scroll to top

Your Cart

%d bloggers like this: