Creative Juices: The Fascinating World of Coffee Art Painting

February 24, 2021

When we think of coffee art painting, different concepts come to mind.
In one, the painting is created on top of a coffee cup as a form of latte art (if you’re not sure what that means, you need a new barista and to check out our article: How to Master Coffee Art).
Another coffee art painting form includes pieces celebrating the gift that is coffee by painting little cafés, hot coffee mugs, and empty cups that tell a story. But that’s not the type of coffee painting we wish to discuss today. Believe it or not, but coffee can be used to create magnificent works of art by turning into the world’s yummiest watercolor.

Coffee isn’t the only drink used to make beautiful art, and Chinese artists have been using tea in their paintings for centuries, but we feel that coffee paintings are stronger (get it?). This article is dedicated to all the coffee fans and aspiring artists out there who want to combine their two loves to create a masterpiece.

Why you should create coffee art paintings

The best and most straightforward reason to paint with coffee is that it’s fun. There are, however, additional advantages worth noting:

  • It’s unique: Works of art created using coffee as paint immediately tell a unique story. People would find your artwork more interesting if the materials you work with are unusual. This is an easy way to rise above the noise and do something a little different.
  • People love coffee: When you paint with coffee, you instantly gain a target audience of avid coffee fans who appreciate the opportunity to enjoy lovely art created using their favorite drink. For artists who want to turn their passion into profit, this advantage speaks volumes.
  • It’s accessible: Art supplies can be rather expensive and aren’t always within reach. By using everyday materials, you guarantee that your colors will be available whenever your muse awakens.
  • It’s beautiful to look at: Perhaps we should have opened with this one. Coffee paintings aren’t just a gimmick. This material allows painters to create an aged effect and paint true masterpieces that feel authentic and antique. You can layer the coffee and let it sit to bring out different shades and add depth to your art.

How coffee art paintings works

Now that we’ve talked you into giving coffee art painting a try, here’s how to approach this task. First, make yourself two cups of coffee, one to sip and one to use as paint. You can try different kinds, but espresso is probably your best choice for coffee art painting material.

Note that as your coffee rests in the cup, its color will likely change and grow deeper. This is great because it allows you to create different shades, but if you want to go back and use the exact same color, you might discover that it’s a little darker now.

In addition to coffee, you’ll need a watercolor brush and paper, and water to change the color of your coffee and clean your brush between strokes. After mixing various coffee colors with water, you can then go ahead and paint as you would with watercolors. Use your imagination and look up other coffee artists for inspiration.

Coffee beans

Get to know these famous coffee artists

There are so many amazing artists to follow and learn from, but we’ve selected three that present a variety of approaches to coffee art painting.

The Coffee Monsters: Some people turn into monsters if they don’t have coffee, but that’s not the case here. Stefan Kuhnigk’s eureka moment happened when he accidentally spilled coffee on paper and discovered his very first coffee monster. Since then, he’s been dripping coffee to create more and more monsters and selling them on his online art gallery. Each monster is unique, and every painting is a fun celebration.

Michael Aaron Williams: This brilliant artist decided that a unique color material isn’t enough and uses antique ledger paper for his coffee art painting canvas. The result is absolutely stunning and proves that you can do so much with just coffee, paper, and talent.

Karen Eland: If you’re a genuine coffee and art fan, you’d appreciate this artist’s way to combine the two worlds. Karen creates coffee-based versions of famous paintings like the Mona Lisa or Girl with a Pearl Earring and casually adds a coffee mug to the picture. We loved this witty approach to coffee art painting.

Digital Coffee art painting

Today’s artists use digital tools to create their work and digital platforms to promote them.
When it comes to coffee art painting, you can still do that in a slightly different way. Use a digital platform like Ripples’ Web App to upload an artwork you’ve created using coffee or any other material, and print the image on a latte to form the perfect, edible coffee art.

print image on latte

You can then take a photo of your masterpiece and share it online for others to enjoy. This is a fun way to combine traditional painting methods with innovative ones. Plus, it will guarantee that your coffee will never go to waste because you’ll end up drinking it. The art you’ve created and shared will live forever on social media.

Is there anything in the world coffee isn’t perfect for? We can’t think of a single idea. This magical, versatile drink seems to be the solution to any task at hand, especially when the hand is holding a paintbrush.

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