Have you been so lucky to find any painted rocks hidden in your town?
Have you wondered what the craze is all about? Or maybe you’ve never heard of this creative trend towards kindness yet.
In short, the painted rocks are a creative project that has taken the nation by force, with the number one goal to make someone smile and brighten their day. When some finds a rock, they can be sure it’s been painted with love from anyone ranging from little bitty kiddos to skilled artists,and everyone in-between. Participating is something any one of any age can do, all you have to do is find one! The rocks will usually have a hashtag or Facebook page written on the back. This shows where the rock came from, and often with directions to post a pic to that area’s painted rock Facebook page or hashtag. You can either keep the rock or rehide.
The general rule is that if you find and keep a rock, you create another one to re-hide somewhere else in your community. The idea really is as simple as inspiring someone through a random act of kindness.
As far as I know, the original idea came from The Kindness Rocks project, although there have been many others that have been inspired, and have begun their own rock sharing groups in their communities. If you’re not sure if you have a painted rocks group close by, a simple search on Facebook with your city’s name, area code, or zip code will turn up the results you want. For example, I’m a part of the #PensacolaRocks Facebook group. Others in my family are a part of #615Rocks! in Nashville.
And after that, if there’s still not a painted rock group close by, you can always begin your own or participate with the Kindness Rocks project.
A few Rules of Thumb:
- You should always paint on clean rocks. If you find rocks outside to paint, a quick soap and water bath, scrub, and thorough drying should be fine.
- You should also always seal your rocks when you’re finished painting them. I use Rustoleum Clear Enamel from a spray can, but I’ve seen others use Mod Podge.
- Never hide your painted rocks where they’ll cause property damage or on private property without permission.
- Don’t trespass to hide rocks
- Don’t hide them in tall grass where lawn equipment could be damaged
- Be aware of your surroundings when hiding and also searching for rocks
A few FAQ’s:
- What type of paint works best? Acrylics work well. Paint pens do as well. But by far, hands down, the Posca paint pens are the absolute best. I use the extra fine & the fine tips. I was skeptical, because I’ll admit they’re a bit pricey and I figured Sharpies would work just as well. But, the Sharpies have a tendency to bleed when sealed. That’s not a problem at all with the Posca pens. There are also tutorials on Pinterest to do hot crayons and a few other methods. Try a few until you find your favorite. My son even found a very sparkly one that had been created using glitter nail polish.
- I can’t paint or draw, does that mean I can’t create rocks to hide? Nope! First of all, there are all kinds of skill levels out there, and I’ve never ever once seen someone find a rock that they didn’t love, no matter what it looked like. But, if you really are insecure about your skills, you can use stickers and Mod Podge them onto the rocks. Ive seen some very cute ones made this way. You can also simply write pretty quotes or words on them, these are fun to find too!
- Does it cost anything to participate? Only the cost of the paint and sealer. There are rock yards that sell really fantastic stones for cheap, so you may want to grab a few of those if you don’t have good, smooth stones in your area. And of course, finding the painted rocks is 100% free!
- I found a rock I really love, do I have to hide it again or can I keep it? You can keep it! If it made you happy, brightened your day, then it’s done it’s job. However, you’re highly encouraged to create and hide another rock into your community to replace the one you kept. It doesn’t have to be the same design.
- Do I have to post on Facebook or social media when I find a rock? Nope, but it’s really fun to connect with others in the community when you do. And it’s also enjoyable for the person who created the rock to see where it’s traveled to. In my Florida group, we’ve had people find our rocks in California and beyond! There are also a lot of little kids who paint and hide rocks for others to find, and it literally makes their day when someone shares that they found their rock.
My kids and I have have already had so much fun with our painted rocks this summer. I have kept a table set up with rocks (that we grabbed from around my pool) and paint. My daughter who’s home from college for the summer has had her friends over with the one goal to paint rocks to hide around the community.
If you’re stumped on what types of designs to create, here are a few ideas from the ones we’ve made so far this summer…
Painted Rock Ideas
These are created using vibrant colors, guaranteed to brighten someone’s day. We’ve made unicorn rocks, Frozen, rainbows, and inspirational quotes. My daughter even painted a beach scene with mermaids swimming.
Gaming Series Painted Rocks
These are my son’s favorites to create. He even writes “gaming series” on the backs, just for fun. I’ve helped him with a few lines here or there, but for the most part, with the Posca markers he’s been able to create these on his own. So far, he’s made Minecraft, Roblox, Toad from Mario, Pac-Man, and Pokemon themed rocks.
Foodie Themed Rocks
These have been a lot of fun to hide, because it’s easy to think of restaurants that match the rocks. We hid the sushi at our favorite local sushi restaurant, and the tomato on a table at a pizza place. Hot dogs, sushi, tomatoes. The kids have already planned for avocados, watermelon, and a few more.
Fully Painted Rocks and Animal Rocks
These are fun because for the most part, you look at the entire shape of the rock and see what you can paint. Similar to finding shapes in the clouds!
We made abstract designs, a turtle, a chicken in an egg, the swamp. The sky is the limit if you’re creating your design to match the shape of your rock.
100% Silly, Strange, and Fun
These are sketches and designs that are funky, fun, and maybe even a little weird. No particular theme, just for the sheer enjoyment of it!
What rocks would your family enjoy creating?
Remember, they’re your designs so the sky is the limit, not your artistic skill.