How to create amazing marble art: DYI ideas

Have you ever seen a curly, surrealistic photo or painting and thought: how on earth do they do that? Find out the answer below as we dive into the simplicity and creative process of marbleizing in this DIY tutorial.

Marbelizing is a form of liquid art that has its origins from 12th century Japan. It also appears in Turkey as a slightly different version, Ebru, or “cloud art“. The baseline is paint dissolved in water, creating distinctive patterns and shapes.

Today marbelizing is found in everything from columns to perfume packages, flourishing with colours ranging across a wide spectre of patterns. There are a number of different marbling kits and packages you can buy online. The prices are usually ranging between €10- €60, but why spend money on something you can already find in your own home and comfort?

A granola package with marble art found in Lotts Co. in Dublin. Credit: Sunniva Batalden
Granola package in Lotts&Co D4
One of several perfume packages found in Dublin with the surreal pattern. Credit: Sunniva Batalden
Marble perfume packages in Grafton Street

In the video below we take you through the simple essentials to create amazing marble art.

Things you’ll need:

  1. A Tray: of one sort or another. Transparent or white works best – I used an IKEA oven tray with a white paper underneath, but an empty icebox might be just as useful.
  2. Water: keep water in a bottle next to the tray and refill when needed. This way you don’t spill as much on the edges and avoid painting getting scrambled up.
  3. Nailpolish: experiment with different types of polish. Not all are equally easy to work with as the thicker they are the quicker they dry. Try not to go too thin either as this will result in your colours being watered out on the paper.
  4. Nail polish remover: If you hate the stench of nail polish remover as much as us, Pennies has a good one that is easy on the nose. You’ll find it in their stores for €1.50 under PS…nail polish remover pads.
  5. Toothpicks: Look in your bathroom or kitchen drawer.
  6. A4 paper: Try different sorts of white paper, not all sticks as easily to the paint or some may be too thin to use. For best result try sketching/art paper.
  7. Tape – always useful


Other paint alternatives:

  1. Cooking Oil: Not essential, but fun to experiment with should you run out of nail polish.
  2. Coffee: can give a certain look to your photos, but is watery and difficult to work with.
  3. Milk: Helps pop the colours, yet is barely visible on paper.

And remember – the stronger the contrast in colour, the stronger it will appear should you wish to photograph it later.

Marbelizing from 'Project Poison' Credit: Sunniva Batalden
Marbelizing from ‘Project Poison’ Credit: Sunniva Batalden

Want to see more amazing marble art? Click (HERE)

Have you tried marbelizing yet? Maybe know someone that might love this? Let us know by leaving a comment below. 


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