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Ever heard of rock painting? In a blast from the past, this fun and easy art phenomenon from the 90s is making a comeback across the country. It also has a new identity tied to Random Acts of Kindness Day, which is celebrated on February 17 and getting bigger and more popular every year.
In celebration and support of the “Kindness Rocks” movement, discover how it got started and how to participate, enjoy the latest in rock painting, and get ideas for even more non-rock random acts of kindness to ring in the day.
Rock Painting: A Humble Beginning
The Kindness Rock Project’s website says the project’s goal is to “inspire others through randomly placed rocks along the way.” The site also says their goal is to “recruit every person who stumbles upon it to join in the pursuit of inspiring others through random acts of kindness.”
The artistic treasure hunt has been steadily gaining popularity. The activity has been on multiple news outlets and Megan Murphy, the founder of The Kindness Rock Project, told the Today Show: “I feel so connected with so many people because people send me messages with their stories every day. Some of them are sad, most of them are heart-warming, and they are all thanking me for starting the project. This isn’t about me. The project is about people. It’s about after people find a rock and they have that feeling about the rock and realize there’s another human being who actually gets them. They realize they are not alone in this world.”
Random Acts of Kindness Meets Rock Painting — How to Participate
Some call it pay it forward or just painted rocks. No matter what you call it, the concept is easy.
Step 1: Paint a rock with an inspiring message or art. You can use acrylic paint, paint pens or any medium you want!
Step 2: Leave it in a public place like a park for someone to find and enjoy. The person who finds the rock can choose to hide it again, spreading the joy to someone else.
Step 3: Keep your eyes peeled for your own kindness rock. It’s fun to paint and hide the rocks, but it’s also fun to run around and find them. Many people share pictures online of rocks they have made or found, sometimes posting clues about where they are hidden. The scavenger hunt gets people outside together.
Step 4: Take a picture of any kindness rock that you make or any you discover and be sure to share them with us on Instagram @ArtistsNetwork.
Even More Random Acts of Kindness
The next step is to double down on kindness with even more fun and random acts of goodwill. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
+Cut your sweetie’s sandwich in the shape of a heart. Use a palette knife to really seal in the artsy love!
+Create small pieces of work to leave in random places (public restroom mirrors, park benches, bus or subway seats, tucked into library books) along with an encouraging message.
+Sketch a piece of artwork based on what you see (a person on a subway, a parkscape) and present it to the person who was featured in the art or was in that particular environment.
+Leave a small art kit–mini sketchpad, pencils or paints–in random places with a note encouraging the recipient to explore his/her own creativity.
+Pay (anonymously) for someone’s entrance into a museum or gallery.
+Write an anonymous note to another artist whose work you admire … or a note of encouragement to another artist who’s struggling with their art.
+Leave an art book in a random location with a note inside urging the finder to take time to enjoy its beauty.
Want to Get Involved?
There are multiple rock painting groups and communities growing to spread the art love. If you search rock painting on Facebook, you can find hundreds of groups. There are broad group and local groups to help you connect with people in your areas. Everywhere from #LouisvilleRocks, NRH Rocks, Summerville SC Rocks, Las Vegas Rocks and more!
Instead of watching TV or playing on electronics, painting rocks is a fun activity for the family to get together and create something. It’s easy for kids to get involved. Whether they paint the rocks or just go out hunting, it’s a great activity to do as a group.
Grab some rocks and paint and spread the love!
Article contributions from Beth Williams.