Sun Art Photo Prints: A Creative Chemistry Project for Kids

Have you ever wanted to create your own unique artwork using the power of the sun? Look no further than Sun Art paper! This incredible material allows you to harness the sun’s energy to create beautiful and lasting prints. In this blog post, we’ll guide you through the exciting process of making your own Sun Art photo print using beach-themed items. This project is not only a fun and creative activity but also a fantastic way to combine STEM principles with art, making it perfect for kids of all ages.

Materials Required:

  • Sun Art paper
  • Beach-themed items (such as seashells, starfish, driftwood, etc.)
  • A pie plate
  • Water

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Prepare your workspace: Choose a sunny spot outdoors or set up a well-lit area indoors. Cover your work surface with newspaper or a plastic sheet to protect it from any spills.
  2. Arrange your beach-themed items: Place the Sun Art paper inside the pie plate. Then, carefully arrange your beach-themed items on top of the paper, creating a unique design. Make sure the items are flat and pressed firmly against the paper.
  3. Expose to sunlight: Take the pie plate with the Sun Art paper and your arranged items outside and place it in direct sunlight. The exposure time will vary depending on the intensity of the sunlight, but it typically takes around 10-15 minutes. You’ll know the print is ready when the exposed areas turn a dark blue or purple color.
  4. Rinse and reveal: Once the print is ready, carefully remove the beach-themed items from the Sun Art paper. Then, rinse the paper under a gentle stream of water to remove any excess chemicals. As you rinse, the unexposed areas of the paper will wash away, revealing your beautiful Sun Art print.
  5. Dry and enjoy: Allow the Sun Art print to dry completely. Once dry, you can display your artwork or even frame it to preserve it for years to come.

Exploring the Science Behind Sun Art:

Sun Art is a fascinating example of a chemical reaction called photochromism. Photochromic substances change color when exposed to light, and this is precisely what happens with Sun Art paper. The chemicals in the paper react with the ultraviolet (UV) rays in sunlight, causing the exposed areas to darken. This process is reversible, so if you expose the print to sunlight again, the colors will fade, allowing you to create new designs.

Additional Tips and Variations:

  • You can use any flat objects to create your Sun Art prints, not just beach-themed items. Experiment with different shapes, textures, and colors to create unique and personalized artwork.
  • If you don’t have access to direct sunlight, you can also use a UV lamp to expose your Sun Art prints.
  • Sun Art prints make excellent gifts for friends and family. They are a thoughtful and creative way to share your artistic talents and the joy of science.


Creating Sun Art photo prints is a delightful and educational activity that combines art and science in a captivating way. By following the simple steps outlined in this blog post, you can create your own stunning Sun Art prints using beach-themed items or any other objects of your choice. So, embrace your creativity, harness the power of the sun, and let your imagination shine through your Sun Art masterpieces!