To ensure the well-being of our employees and the public, we are canceling or postponing many programs, events and operations. For details on our response to the COVID-19 pandemic, click here. Yosemite National Park is closed to all park visitors until further notice. See the Yosemite National Park site and the NPS Public Health Update for more information.

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Need a little extra creativity and color in your day? Our art team has some fun projects to try at home!

Watercolor Workshop, Online Edition

Join the Conservancy’s Lora Spielman for a four-part watercolor series. She’ll walk you through some watercolor basics, and guide you toward creating your own painting of a famous park feature: Yosemite Falls.

Download the instructions for the first three lessons in this series:

Watercolor Series Part 1: Value

In the first video of this four-part series, you’ll learn to create dark and light shades using your paint palette, brush and water.

Watercolor Series Part 2: Color Mixing

Once you’re comfortable with creating light and dark versions of the paints in your palette, it’s time to make some new colors! In this video, you’ll learn to make a secondary and tertiary hues.

Watercolor Series Part 3: Technique

Learn key watercolor techniques, including how to create eye-catching color gradients and “lift” color from your paper.

Watercolor Series Part 4: Paint Yosemite Falls

Grab your beverage (and snacks!) of choice, assemble your painting supplies, and settle in for a virtual “Paint & Sip” with Lora! By the end of this lesson, you’ll have your own personal piece of art: a frame-worthy watercolor of one of Yosemite’s most famous features.

Art Projects for Kids (or Anyone!)

Make “scratch art” using a few simple supplies: paper, paints and a wooden skewer or pencil.

Create your own cardboard stamps for a printmaking project:

Keep the creativity flowing wherever you go by downloading step-by-step instructions:

Color a Yosemite scene. Have you always wanted to see a purple Half Dome? Or a polka-dotted bear? Now’s your chance! Download park-themed coloring pages:

Half Dome and two bears, by Lora Spielman (of the Yosemite Conservancy art team)

Honey bee, by Lora Spielman (of the Yosemite Conservancy art team)

Lupine, by Lora Spielman

(see Susie’s illustrations in the children’s books Little Muir’s Song and Little Muir’s Night,and learn more about her work on her website!)


Thanks for making art with us! We’ll add more activities to this page as they’re available. In the meantime, we’d love to see what you make: Post your art online and tag us (@yosemiteconservancy) and #HappyIslesArt.