How to Create One of a Kind Art with Coffee

Who knew that a small bean could create a such a stir? A fresh cup of coffee, known to many as “liquid gold,” gives many people an extra energy boost in the morning to propel the day forward, and comes with a side of health benefits, including a dose of antioxidants. Whether stopping off at your local coffee shop or waiting for your personalized coffee subscription to be delivered, people relish their daily caffeine infusion. But this coveted bean can also be used to create unique art projects.

Here is what you need to know if you’d like to paint with coffee.

Brewing the perfect tone


To begin your coffee creation, you’ll want to brew an array of shades. For example, french roasts may produce a redder tone while espresso will create browner hues. To achieve this you may want to experiment with your coffee grounds to get the right color. There are settings on your automatic coffee machine for a smaller and stronger cup or you can use a french press and squeeze out the best colors. This will help give you a darker coffee. You can also soak the grounds themselves in water to extract a deeper shade, then add water to lighten it if needed. To give your piece some contrast you can use other colors of paints in addition to your favorite coffee color.

Art with foam

Daily coffee consumption is currently the highest it’s been in years. And as more people head to their local coffee shops for a cup of morning brew, many find a friendly picture created on top of their cup, made out nothing more than steamed milk and coffee. It’s called latte art and it has become an integral part of the barista craft. The trick is you have to use whole milk when attempting to create one of many designs. The fat in the milk helps to make a thicker foam. Reduced or no fat is not recommended. You can also try your hand with 3D milk foam art. With some practice you can manipulate the foam in ways to make your favorite animals popping out from your mug. To add more character some artists will use food safe paint or food coloring.

Don’t cry over spilled coffee


You don’t have to be quick to clean up those coffee rings or spills. Instead, turn them into art. Try your hand at these sepia toned paintings starting with, of course, a cup of coffee. You can make your own techniques or find inspiration in from famed artists such as Jackson Pollock. Use a brush or sponge to drop different sizes and shapes of coffee onto your canvas. You can soak different thicknesses of strings and then drop them onto a canvas for a more abstract look. Additionally, you can use more traditional painting tools, such as paint brushes, paper, or canvas, all thing tools that you can find at your craft store at an assortment of prices.

Another idea is to draw out a picture in pencil or even free hand, use some tacky glue and place the beans right onto some canvas. Or use dried grounds in your pictures for a different effect.  Coffee painting is a great way to expand your artistic horizons, and you’re upcycling existing material you have. Get together some friends for a night in of painting or put a new spin on date night. You will create one of a kind gifts for the coffee lover in your life or yourself.