Impossibly Haunted Houses

This is a fun project to do at Halloween, but it does take a lot of black marker! These examples were created by 3rd grade students, but this project can easily be adapted for other grades.

Using watercolors on 12" X 18" watercolor paper, students made a wash using warm or cool colors applied in a striped pattern. Allow to dry.

I handed out several images for the students to view; buildings, windows, various architectural details, and (of course) Halloween "things". I make four packets for each table and put them in a color coded folder. Students are encouraged to view these images, gain inspiration from them, but not copy them exactly.

The students began drawing directly on to their watercolored paper, making sure to leave a space between each section of the house. I told them that it should look like there was an earthquake and the house broke in to pieces. This step can be difficult for them to understand, but if you model it for them a few times, they tend to get the hang of it.

Because the houses are impossibly haunted, I tell them that the pieces don't have to be in the right spot. If they want a column in the middle of a level holding up the roof, then I tell them to go for it!

Finally, details are added to the drawing: spider webs, stars, bats, a moon, black cats, etc.

I had the students outline their drawings using a thin black permanent marker. They then filled in the larger areas using a thick black marker.

The results are wonderfully creepy, fabulously spooky, and impossibly haunted!

See more Impossibly Haunted Houses at my Artsonia Gallery.


  1. Love this idea. Do you by chance have the packets of architecture and halloween stuff to share?


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