What is abstract art? Art is a critical part of successful home décor and making a place feel like an actual home. It does so many things, from showcasing the personalities of the people who live in the space to providing conversation pieces to bringing in color and form where those things might otherwise be lacking. Not only that, but wall art in particular is helpful in those ways without taking up any floor space – a win-win for many pressed for square footage.
This tutorial will show you a fast and easy way to create modern artwork for your home or office. As a DIY, this inexpensive project can be completely customized to your color preferences and space constraints, which is certainly a bonus.
DIY Level: Beginner
- Stretched canvas in your preferred size (shown is 18” x 24”)
- String, any type (recommend thicker over thin string)
- Spray paint (recommend at least three colors)
- Matte finish spray (optional but recommended)
Step 1: Tape down end of string. Flipping over your canvas, tape the end of your string securely onto the frame. TIP: The thicker the string you use, the more prominent your artwork’s contrasting lines will be. Your contrasting lines will end up about 1/4 to 1/2 the thickness of your string, so don’t be afraid to go much thicker than you think.
Step 2: Pull string in straight line across canvas. You’ll want to pull the string tight enough so it lies flat against the canvas and so the line is straight.
Step 3: Wrap string around back of canvas; repeat steps 2 & 3. This is where you let your inner artiste out. Alternate the angles, distances, and positioning of your string. Wrap tightly around and around your canvas. TIP: Use tape on the back frame to secure the string with any sudden changes in angle so the string won’t slide around and loosen.
Step 4: Stop wrapping and tape the end of the string when done. Check the front of your canvas frequently to gauge when you feel you’re done wrapping the string. Secure the final string’s end on the back of the canvas frame with tape.
Step 5: Prepare spray painting space. Position your canvas in a well-ventilated area. Gather your spray paint colors and decide on the order you want them on your artwork.
TIP: Because you’ll be painting the sides of the canvas as well, use boards or disposable plastic cups or something else to elevate your canvas off the ground prior to painting.
Step 6: Begin spray painting. A couple of things to keep in mind for this project: (1) Spray as close to parallel to the canvas as possible, so as to keep the white space (under the string) white. (2) Spray from further away than you normally would; recommend at least 18” away. (3) Use a very very light hand in spraying so your white lines will stay true.
TIP: We’d recommend, after doing this project, starting with your middle color, spraying ever so slightly wider (or, toward the ends) than what you want to actually end up with. Then work in from the ends with the other colors. It’s very important to use as little paint as possible while still getting the color coverage you’re after; your white string lines will be grateful.
Don’t forget to spray the canvas ends as you go! Let dry thoroughly.
Step 7 (optional): Spray canvas with Matte Finish spray. After carefully removing the string from your piece, lightly spray the entire canvas with a matte finish spray. This helps the art piece to look less like a glossy, glaring spray paint job and more like a piece of real art.
Step 8: Let Matte Finish dry, then hang art.
That was easy, wasn’t it?
And it adds a contemporary touch and a pop of color to the space.
We love the versatility of an abstract piece like this; it blends well with all types of décor.
And it’s so fast and easy to do, too! Good luck creating your own beautiful DIY abstract artwork.