Awesome Art Projects: How to Make Things That Fly

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Hot Air Balloon - Portchie

For a final project for ‘things that fly’ – I would like you to make, draw, or paint something that flies! It is entirely up to you what you create, and I’m sure you have some wonderful ideas after all these weeks of art camp! But, as usual I have some ideas for you, ranging from giant wings, to paper helicopter crafts and origami, to hot air balloon collages, and craft stick airplanes! 

Airplane Art and Crafts

Craft Stick Airplanes

Craft Stick Airplanes

These are pretty straightforward to make – you just glue the craft sticks (big for the wings and little for the tail works best) onto a clothes beg, and then when the glue is dry, kids can paint and decorate however they want, before displaying them or playing with them. 

Origami Planes

Check out these video tutorials on how to make origami planes… Origami is a great art to learn; it develops dexterity, focus, and geometry, plus it is a great mindful activity. 


If you want to try a more traditional ‘paper plane’ – have a look at this post from Frugal Fun for Boys and Girls, that shows 4 ways to fold paper airplanes. 

Symmetrical Plane Made of Symmetrical Planes....

This is one to try for older kids or grown ups… you could paint this by hand, or you could make a series of stamps (potatoes, foam, or wood would work), and print the plane shapes out to make the plane shape! 

What else could you make with this technique? 

Cardboard Plane Craft

A perfect way to use up some scrap cardboard – simply cut the curvy plane shape, carefully cut a slit in the middle, then cut a long, slightly angled rectangle and slot it through the slit. Once you have the craft assembled, kids are free to paint and decorate as they wish!

Maybe you could make them into a mobile? 

Pop Art Planes

Pop Art by YoPedro
Pop Art Planes by Yo Pedro

Pop Art is great for kids and grown ups alike! Here’s two images I have found to inspire you… Pop art focuses on bold colours, defined shapes – often repeated images or motifs… and simple lines. Give it a go. Here are some tips:

Use coloured paper, or paint a few backgrounds in your favourite bright colours. You could use many techniques to add your planes (or hot air balloons, kites, birds, helicopters, whatever you want!). You could shapes from white or different coloured paper. You could create a stamp and print in different colours. You could make a stencil and use paint or chalk to make the shape. Or you could paint free hand! 

You Can Fly Too...

Let your Imagination Soar

Last summer at Art Camp each child made giant cardboard wings – it was THE most popular thing we have ever done at any of our art sessions! 

It was such a fun way for each child to get creative and express themselves! We had fairy wings, parrot wings, butterfly wings, falcon wings, abstract wings and more… 

All you need for this activity is

  • some large card (packaging boxes opened up work well)
  • scissors or a craft knife
  • something to decorate the wings with, such as paint, coloured paper, collage materials, buttons, pom poms, and anything else you can think of! 

Let the kids choose the size and shape of their wings, draw them, cut them out, then decorate them! If you want to get really clever, you could find a way to secure thing on your child’s back for some extra fun, but otherwise attach to the wall, or place on the floor for a photo op! Have fun! 

Other Things that Fly

Paper Helicopters

Try making easy paper helicopters – there’s two ways here, from MomBrite and Red Ted Art. Click each image for instructions! These are great STEAM activities! (STEAM = science, technology, engineering, art and maths)

Design an Airship

Get your pens and pencils out and design a spectacular flying machine! It could be a hot air balloon, an air ship, a flying car, or something totally out of this world! 

Make a few sketches, then choose your favourite and use a fine liner to draw in all the details… I’d love to see any designs that you make… 

Collaged Hot Air Balloons

The best thing about hot air balloons is the balloon part, of course! They come in so many fun colours, patterns and shapes! Use collage to make some bright and beautiful hot air balloons.

Cut strips of coloured paper, or magazines and layer them together. How about a patchwork effect? 

Or how about making the balloon out of one pattern? I absolutely adore this night sky design balloon… 

Experiment and see what you can do! 

Afternoon Reading

Your story today is Little People, Big Dreams: Amelia Earhart; all about the famous female pilot… 

Journal Prompts

Here are some journal prompts for today: 

  • Write a poem about flying, aviation, or any of the things that fly in our sky 
  • Write or draw about yourself with wings – what would it feel like? What would your wings look like? 
  • Lots of people equate flying to freedom – what do you think about this?
  • Can you fill your page with little drawings of all different things that fly? You could go back to last week’s insects and combine them with the planes and spaceships of this week? 
  • Design some flying machines, as above, maybe use the birds and insects as inspiration? 

I hope you enjoyed our drawing workshop, kite making, and our flying things project today. See you tomorrow for some sunshine! 

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Katherine is a mixed media artist, art teacher, writer, designer, photographer – and mum of 2 – who works and lives in North Devon, nestled in the woods on a little smallholding. She has a BA in Performance Studies, an MA in Fine Art, and an MFA in photography, alongside a background in early years childhood and special education. Katherine uses her artistic talents, passion for helping people, and unique creativity to create articles, courses and classes that promote creativity, artistic skills, self expression and well-being. She believes in the power of the creative arts and how engaging with them can improve so many aspects of life.
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