After finishing our baby girl’s dinosaur-themed nursery this summer, I wanted to do something special to display her first name for one wall. I decided to paint canvases featuring dinosaur silhouettes for each letter of her name. These silhouettes are incredibly easy to make, just so long as you don’t mind spending an hour or so for each canvas. Here’s how!
First, I did some research and picked dinosaurs that matched the first letter of our daughter’s name. I used the UK Natural History Museum’s Dinosaur Directory to pick out which ones I liked best.
Our daughter’s name will be Audrey, so I chose the Archaeopteryx for A (a personal favorite of my husband’s), Udanoceratops for U, Deinonychus for D (my personal favorite), Riojasaurus for R, Euoplocephalus for E, and Yangchuanosaurus for Y. I then Googled these dinosaurs for the best looking images that I could use for each canvas.
Once the images were selected, I blew them up as large as they could be on my screen and traced them onto a sheet of white printer paper. I tried my best to capture the details, though the tracing job didn’t have to be perfect by any stretch of means.
Then, I did the same with letters in the font and style of my choice.
Once everything was traced, I used a pair of scissors to carefully cut out the dinosaurs and letters. You can use an X-acto knife if you’d prefer.
After the shapes were cut out, I then arranged each on the canvas to see what would be the best layout to display both the letter and dinosaur best.
Once a location was determined, I first traced the letter onto the canvas:
Then, I did the same with the dinosaur itself:
After tracing, it was time to paint. The background of each canvas was painted a different color using acrylic craft paint and a small paint brush. Depending on the color, they took 2-3 coats each. The dinosaurs themselves were painted black to help them stand out.
And here’s what they looked like finished!
A for Archaeopteryx:
U for Udanoceratops:
D for Deinonychus:
R for Riojasaurus:
E for Euoplocephalus:
And finally, Y for Yangchuanosaurus:
These canvases turned out even better than I envisioned, and I absolutely adore them. They are now hanging proudly in Audrey’s nursery.
You can make similar silhouettes out of any kind of animals or other themes, too — the sky’s the limit! Hope you like them, too!
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