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France Art Activity: Learn About Pointillism

Georges Seurat was a French artist famous for creating a painting technique called pointillism. Instead of painting in brush strokes, he painted in series of tiny dots that blended together to make pictures. That’s pointillism. When Seurat first started painting like this, art critics made fun of him. But other artists began painting in the same style, and the technique became more and more popular.

Today, we see pointillism all around us. Computer screens (like the one you’re looking at now) project images through patterns of tiny dots. Except, instead of paint, these dots are made of light! TVs work this way too, and so do the flashing lights on fire trucks. And, if you print this activity, your printer will print the instructions in dots as well.

Want to see how pointillism works up close? Get artistic and explore the wonderful technique that Georges Seurat taught us. Have fun!

A Pointy Painting

A Pointy Painting


  • Cardboard Tube (Toilet Paper Tube)
  • Black Paint
  • Small Tray (Paper Plate)
  • Blank White Paper
  • Crayons


  1. Pour just enough black paint to coat the bottom of the tray.
  2. Dip the end of the cardboard tube into the black paint. Hold the tube over the tray for a moment - you don't want any dripping.
  3. Use the tube like a stamp. Repeatedly press the paint-end of the tube onto your paper page. Dip back into the paint when you need to. Fill the entire page with circles so that some of the circles overlap.
  4. Pick three of your favorite crayon colors. Once the paint has dried, color in every circle with one of your three crayons. You'll end up coloring the areas where the circles overlap with more than one color. See how the overlapping circles make new shades? That's how pointillism works!
  5. Display your picture and try repeating the activity with different colors!