Bumpy Blotto Beasts

Bumpy Blotto Beasts lesson plan

Discover Australian wildlife and Aboriginal dot paintings. Combine three fun art techniques together to make colorful animal images.

  • 1.

    Fold two or three pieces of white paper in half. Open. Cover your craft area with recycled newspaper. On one paper at a time, paint on one side of the fold with Crayola Fingerpaints. Choose at least two colors to make each background.

  • 2.

    While the paint is still wet, fold the papers. Rub gently on the unpainted side to transfer the paint. Open the paper and see the mirror (blotto) image. Notice how colors mix together. Add more paint and repeat the process to change the image or details.

  • 3.

    When the symmetrical shape is complete, dip just one finger into fingerpaint. Apply dots of color to create patterns that surround or overlap the background. Lay flat to dry.

  • 4.

    Choose an Australian animal, or imaginatively combine parts of several of these animals. From your dry paintings, cut out animal parts to make a unique creature.

  • 5.

    Glue the Bumpy Blotto Beast on construction paper. Paint on more dots if necessary to complete your Beast.


  • Students research pictures of animals that live in Australia or its waters such as koalas, kangaroos, kiwi birds, coral, and sharks.
  • Students study historic and contemporary Aboriginal paintings, and note the art techniques and subject matter.
  • Children explore three art techniques: color mixing, blotto (mirror image) painting, and Aboriginal dot painting.


  • Instead of using fingerpaints, use tempera paint and brushes for both the blotto image and the dots.
  • Children whose fine motor skills are still increasing will be more successful if they add dots after the background paint is dry. They may also prefer to sketch animal parts with Crayola Erasable Colored Pencils before cutting them.
  • Find out more about Australia and its Aboriginal peoples and animals. Gather photographs. Invite speakers. Listen to, and make, Aboriginal music. Learn about the land, its history, and contemporary issues.
  • Use Crayola Markers to complete the animal's natural environment. Or group animals together by environments and create a mural for each setting.