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Secret Message Art

 Posted by on February 5, 2013
Feb 052013

Use art supplies to create secret messages or secret drawings. This would be fun for Valentine’s Day or any time of the year really.

Secret Message Art

Secret Message Art


  • white paper
  • white glue
  • paint {we used watercolor paint and washable tempera paint – both seem to work equally fine}

How to Make the Secret Message

  1. On the white paper, draw a message or design with the white glue. Just squeeze the glue from the bottle and create your message.
    secret message art
  2. Let the glue dry.
  3. Paint the white paper to reveal your secret message or design. For the message below, we used watercolors.
    Secret Message Art

It would be fun to introduce the art idea to your kids by making secret messages for them. Just have them paint the paper like they normally would and see if they notice anything happen. See how long it takes them to notice the dried glue on the paper.

3D Paintings

Then, have them make their own secret message art. This was Aiden’s favorite part. He loved squirting glue all over the paper. The cool part? That’s all there is to this activity. My son {age 3} wants to practice gluing, but doesn’t really care to put anything on the glue.

Secret Message 3D Art

This time we used washable tempera paint.

Secret Message 3D Art

I really like how this turned out. Painting over the glue gives the art a 3D effect. The higher you pile your glue, the more 3D it looks.

I can’t decide if I like the watercolor or the tempera paint better. The watercolor seemed a bit easier. You just paint like normal. The tempera paint was a bit trickier. We had to keep adding paint to really see the raised effect. What do you think?

Secret Messages with Crayon Resist

If you don’t want to wait for the glue to dry {which can take a while depending on how much you use}, you could make secret messages with white crayons and watercolors. Write your message with a white crayon. Paint over it with watercolors to reveal.

Secret Message Valentines with Crayon Resist

More Valentine’s Day Ideas

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  8 Responses to “Secret Message Art”

  1. I loved secret messages when I was a kid! Have you tried the lemon juice and a candle one? We did that at a preschool parent meeting where they were showing us science activities and it was a little tough to make work, but when it did it was neat.

    The 3D painting turned out especially cool. I’ll put this on our list of things to do.

    • I actually haven’t tried the lemon juice and candle one. You are also supposed to be able to get it to work with a lamp – that way there’s no open flame. I have another way to do secret messages with lemon juice that doesn’t involve heat. I’ll be sharing that tomorrow. :)

      • Cool! The flame was the part that made it difficult, anyway…it was hard to get a balance between getting the lemon juice hot enough and not burning the paper.

  2. We love crayon resist secret messages, but I’ve never done the glue idea! We’ll have to try that. I’m sure my boys would love it.

  3. Great idea! I want to try in my preschool classroom. Also, I shared on our district’s Birth to Five Facebook page for getting kids ready for kindergarten. Thanks for posting!

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