If you like painting rocks, here is a fun autumn craft for you and the kids – turn rocks into jack-o-lantern pumpkins!
I don’t grow pumpkins every year; it’s every other year with me. That’s how it goes: one year, I get inspired to plant pumpkins and marvel at their vibrant beauty, but quickly start worrying as they fill the whole garden. Then I pick them and realize that we don’t even really cook with them much, so next year I decide: no pumpkins! However, by the end of the summer, it seems like something is missing from my garden, and I long for a little pile of pumpkins at my doorstep. Next year, I plant pumpkins again…
This year, I didn’t have pumpkins. Alas! To satisfy my autumn crave, I painted a bunch of pumpkin rocks instead. After all, plump and round little rocks are very much like miniature pumpkins.
Materials for Painting Pumpkin Rocks
(the post contains Amazon affiliate links to the products I’ve used)
- acrylic paints (red, yellow, brown and white)
- ink pens (can be substituted with black acrylic paint)
- (optional) outdoor varnish if you plan to keep them outdoors
How to Paint Pumpkin Rocks
1 — Paint the rocks orange. If your set of acrylic paints doesn’t include orange, as mine didn’t, mix yellow and red. I think that different shades of yellow and red add character to the pumpkins, like natural variation. I don’t use primer for painting rocks, but I do use heavy body acrylics for a thick layer in one coat. You can do that, try priming the rocks with gesso first, or simply give them a few coats of whatever paint you’re using.
2 — Dilute brown paint with water to make it semi-transparent and mark the ribbed structure of the pumpkins’ sides. Use undiluted brown for painting pumpkin stems.
3 — Dilute white and brush it around the ribbed edges, giving them a bit of form.
4 — Add a couple of highlights to the stem as well.
5 — Use ink pens (or a very thin brush with black acrylic paint) to outline the facial features. You can make them look like traditional carved pumpkins – I did something like that when I painted garden markers. These guys have a more animated look with white in their eyes and teeth, which is the next step – paint eyes and teeth with white. Last, add details with an ink pen (or a brush) – eyelashes, irises, eyebrows, etc.
What to Do With Pumpkin Rocks
- Pumpkin rocks would be perfect for hiding around the city in the fall. Are you participating in this new artistic trend?
- Use them for decorating your porch, flower pots and windowsills.
- Let the kids play with them. They fit well with the dolls in doll houses and imaginary worlds.
- Or challenge the kids to stack them up!
More Autumn Projects?