Beaded Collage Inspired by Aboriginal Dream Paintings

  • Young Adult
  • Grades 1-3

Use beads to mimic the use of dots in Aboriginal Dream Paintings. Be inspired to make your own paintings based on your dreams!


  • Paint Brushes Triangle Handle
  • Hemp Cord
  • Acrylic Paint Jars, 24 Assorted colors
  • Jumbo Craft Sticks
  • Pencil
  • Craft Glue


Step 1. Gather your supplies.

Beaded Collage


Beaded Collage


Step 2.


To create your frame, take (8) Jumbo Craft Sticks and place them down vertically adjacent to each other to form a square. Take (3) additional Jumbo Craft Sticks and glue them horizontally across the (8) vertical craft sticks.


Step 3.


Paint the front of your frame. We used a mixture of blue and gold Acrylic Paint.

Beaded Collage


Step 4.


Using a pencil, draw in your design. We chose to paint a snake, which is often depicted in Aboriginal dream paintings.


Step 5.


Paint your design and also paint any background elements.

Beaded Collage


Step 6.


As Aboriginal Dream Paintings are often made using dots, lines and patterns, we chose Pony Beads to represent the dotted look. Once your frame is dry, begin to decorate your images with Pony Beads, such as Bright Pearl Pony Beads or a Tub of Pony Beads.

Beaded Collage


Step 7.


Once all your beads are glued down, finish your design with painted dots in other open spaces.


Step 8.


To create a hanger for your painting, glue (2) Pony Beads on the top edges and thread a piece of Hemp Cord through.

Further Discussion: In our painting we painted a Rainbow Snake. In Aboriginal tales, the Rainbow Snake, is believed to have helped to create mountains and valleys throughout the world. Have your class create their own myth or folktale and paint a “Dream Painting” based on their story.