How to make Easy Beautiful Beach-Inspired Paint Pouring Art

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Create beach inspired art with these easy paint pouring ideas for your home. Do you love coastal style decor? Do you want to learn how to make beautiful coastal art for your home on a budget?

Don’t worry, I got you covered! Here you will learn an easy step-by-step guide on how to make paint pouring art with a beachy flair.

You will also get a list of pour painting supplies and acrylic pour painting for beginners tips.

Plus, at the bottom of the post, are the BEST DIY BEACH CRAFT AND PAINTING IDEAS TO TRY!

I love that fluid art offers endless creative possibilities. Just pour and watch as the paint produces a unique design. 

These beach-inspired colors are perfect for when you want to enjoy a little sand and surf at home.

Now here is a little about what pour painting is and how to do it.

What is Paint Pouring?

Paint pouring is a type of fluid art.  It comprises pouring different color paints over a surface.  The surface is then tilted to allow the paint to flow to create a unique design.

Each painting is different and you don’t even need a paintbrush! This is the perfect starting point for beginners.

There is less pressure to “get it right” than with traditional painting. I love that paint pouring offers endless creative possibilities. Just pour and watch as the paint produces a unique design. 

Paint Pouring Techniques to Try

There are so many techniques for paint pouring art, but here are a few of the most common methods.

  • Straight pour
  • Strainer pours
  • Flip cup
  • Swipe pour
  • Dirty pour
  • Puddle pour
  • Tree Ring pour
  • Dutch Pour

Before starting all pours, be sure to prepare the acrylic paint with an acrylic medium. An acrylic medium is added to extend the drying time and changes the consistency to make it flow better over your surface.

Beginner Basic – The Straight Pour

There’s a lot of terms for straight or basic pour. Straight pour method can be achieved by pouring paint side by side or layering on a surface. This is usually the first step for any pour method. You can be as creative as you want with this method, I like to try swirling the paint with a tip of a paintbrush, blowing the paint around with a blow dryer. The possibilities are endless.

Mix it up and make things interesting by using different materials to create pours like open end plastic cups, cookie cutters, and strainers just to name a few.

Straight paint pour with red, teal, and white
Photo Credit: Molly’s Artistry

What is a Dirty Pour?

By layering different paint colors in a cup to create a dirty pour that can be used for a straight pour, flip cup pour, or a tree ring pour.

beach paint poured rocks

How to Use the Strainer Pour Method

Using a straight or dirty pour technique over a strainer or bottle-end to create a bloom paint pouring look.

What is a Flip Cup Paint Pour?

A flip cup paint pour can be accomplished by layering prepared paint colors in a cup like a dirty pour but flipping the cup upside down and pulling straight up. There are several ways you can do this:

 1. Placing the canvas font side down on top of the cup then carefully flipping the canvas and cup at the same time so the cup is on top.

2. Using something sturdy like cardboard to place on top of the cup, flip the cup and board over and slide the flip cup over your surface and pull the cup straight up. Some artists use sewing needles to poke some holes on top of the flip cup to release the suction to let the paint flow naturally.

flip cup pour painting

How to do a Swipe Paint Pour

This is one of my favorite pours to create beautiful beach paint pouring art. I poured the prepared paint colors in rows side by side with the desired top swipe color on the end that I swiped from.

You can use cardboard, paper towels, even a reusable plastic flexible cutting board to create your swipe pours.

It’s important to use feather light pressure when pulling your swipe board across the surface. Too much pressure will pull of the paint off the surface and that’s not what you want.

swipe paint pouring art

Puddle Pour by Molly’s Artistry

Here’s another pour that’s great for beginners. Puddle pours consist of simply pouring your prepared paint colors on top of a surface that’s been covered in a layer of paint to help the paint flow easier.

Start by pouring your paint in the desired location on the surface and continue to layer paint directly on top of each color, creating what I call a raindrop effect.

What are Tree Ring Pours?

This method may look difficult to master but you really can’t go wrong with paint pouring. Begin with creating a dirty cup with prepared paint by layering. Use a cup that’s flexible enough to squeeze together to create a point or spout for pouring.

There’s two ways to do it and both works.

1. Pour the dirty cup slowly in the middle and keep it still so the stream of paint staying in the middle the tree rings expand out.

2. Pour the dirty cup slowly in the middle of the canvas and use slow tight circular motions and keep it still so the stream of paint staying in the middle the tree rings expand out.

The slower you pour the tighter the rings will be. Once the all the paint is poured, you can slowly tilt the surface in circular motions to help move the paint to the edges if needed.

The Dutch Pour – Warning It’s Addicting!

I saved this one for last, it’s the newest paint pouring technique that I’ve tried and I absolutely love it! Dutch pours can be made by moving paint around with a blow dryer or similar.

Cover the surface will the desired paint color, then pouring prepared paint colors on to the surface in areas you desired. Before using the blow dryer to move the paint around, pour the same base paint color around the prepared paint colors.

Start blowing the paint in any direction (toward the center and outwards).

Video Sources:  Molly’s Artistry and Rinske Douna To see more of their videos and to stay up-to-date on new videos you can subscribe to their YouTube channels.

What You’ll Need for your First Paint Pouring Project

  • Acrylic Paint
  • Pouring Medium – Liquitex pouring mediumFlood Floetrol, or Golden GAC800  are the most commonly used brands.
  • Surface – Canvas, Wood, Rocks, Tile, anything goes!
  • Craft Sticks for mixing pouring medium and paint.
  • Containers for paint – You can use plastic cups, takeout food and fruit cup containers, basically anything that can hold paint!
  • Container for canvas – I use a large plastic bin to container my paint spill off.
  • Cookie cooling rack is used to support your paint pouring surface whether it be canvas or rocks.
  • Optional **Silicone and 91% Isopropyl Alcohol for creating cells
  • Art Resin for super shiny gloss or high gloss sealer
  • Gloves are good to have, but it’s just a personal choice for the artist.
  • Paper towels are handy to have on hand for quick clean ups.
  • Tweezers will remove unwanted house fly’s and animal hair from your beautifully fresh paint poured art.
  • Heat gun will remove air bubbles and create cells on paint poured art.

My Tried and True Top 10 Tips for Paint Pouring

  1. Have a plan.  Know what materials you need before you start and have them ready.  It’s also helpful to decide what colors you are going to use to ensure they will blend well together.
  2. Prepare your work area.  You can use newspaper or plastic to cover your work surface.
  3. Use masking tape to tape up the wood frames of canvas surfaces.
  4. Use the smallest cup you can to complete the project.  It will be easier to combine colors and you’ll waste less paint.  Try to find cups with lids in case you need to cover the paint before you have a chance to use it.
  5. Be sure gently mix the pouring medium and paint together. This will help eliminate air bubbles in your artwork.
  6. Tweezers will save your painting, especially when there’s paint debris or cat hair that make their way on your paint poured surface.
  7. Heat guns and straws can help eliminate air bubbles after your paint is poured.
  8. Leave a little extra paint in the cup to fill in areas and corners that your pour did not reach.
  9. When paint pouring on rocks, once it’s dry you can use a light grit sandpaper to smooth the bottom of the rock from dried puddled paint.
  10. Relax and have fun.  Enjoy experimenting with different colors and techniques. Keep practicing and you’ll find your style.

How to Make a DIY Paint Pouring Tray

This is perfect for using household items that you may already have. I used a square foil baking pan for this diy paint pouring tray. Punch holes along both sides. Stick wooden skewers in the holes to make a base for the rocks. Once the paint has dried, you can peel it off and reuse the pan again. You can also use this tray to base coat several rocks at once.

diy paint pouring tray

How to Make Beach Painted Rocks

Step 1: Place clean smooth rocks on a cooling rack inside a container or this making this diy reusable paint pouring container.

rocks on rack for paint pouring

Step 2: Start preparing your paint cups with the desired paint colors and pouring medium. Mix in the pouring medium and stir with a craft stick. Mix just enough pouring medium to thin out the acrylic paint for pouring. The paint cannot be too thick, it needs to flow over the rock. The paint should be able to coat the mixing stick but still be able to drip off smoothly. The ratios will vary depending on the brand of pouring medium, but typically I use 1-part paint to two parts Floetrol.

pouring medium mixed with paint

Step 3: Pour each color side-by-side in lines to create a beach look. Use a straw to blow the paint around to create waves.

pouring paint over rock

Step 4 : Try this look! Layer each color into another cup to create a Dirty Pour.

dirty pour cup

Step 5: Begin pouring the dirty pour slowly over the rock slowly in your desired pattern to cover the entire rock.

dirty pour on rocks

Step 6: Let the rocks dry for at least 2 to 3 days before moving or sealing. Be careful transporting your container, if the rocks are round instead of having a flat base, moving the container can cause the painted rocks to move and roll.

Sand the bottom of the painted rocks will a light grit sandpaper to remove dried bits of paint. Then you can paint the bottom or leave it.

Beach painted rocks

Here’s How I Displayed My Beach Painted Rocks!

Now that you have created your beautiful beach-inspired rocks, you’ll want to display them. Some of my favorite ways include in planters, glass hurricane candle holders, and natural jute baskets with natural elements with shells and driftwood.

beach paint pour rocks display
beach painted rocks in basket

Best Beach-Inspired Pour painting Ideas and Crafts

Best Beach-Inspired Paint Pouring Ideas and Crafts

flip cup pour painting

My 14-year-old son, made this Ocean Waves Paint Poured Wall Art for our hall bathroom coastal make-over. He says that “anyone can do it, there’s no wrong do it!”

Dirty paint pouring art

You can make beautiful wall art with this dirty cup paint pour idea by Rock Painting Guide.


I hope you find some beach DIY décor inspiration here for your next project.

Be sure to check out our Amazon Shop for our favorite paint pouring supplies now!

If you want to learn more about paint pouring on rocks and other rock painting ideas, check these out!

paintpouringonrocks
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