DIY Reverse Coloring Postcards | Free Download

Watch this tutorial over on my YouTube Channel!

It's National Card and Letter Writing Month and I thought it'd be fun to make and send out some postcards that can encourage the recipient to get creative! 

The idea behind these Reverse Coloring Postcards is for you to paint a colorful background then send it to your recipient who will draw in shapes, figures, outlines, doodles, patterns, words, etc. onto it! It's a fun way for both parties to get creative in a loose, fun, no-pressure way!

See examples of postcards that have been reversed colored in at the end of this post.

These postcards can also be recycled and used in a collage or mixed media piece!

I created a template for the back of the postcard that includes a short explanation and some guidelines for the address and stamp--feel free to download it and make some postcards of your own to send out! 


(I like to format the PDFs so that any extra paper is on one end so you can cut it off and use it as scratch paper or for another project!)

I hope you enjoy this snail mail project and if you try it, I'd love to see pics! If you post on social media, don't forget to tag me @atiliay. Have fun! :)


You'll Need:

  • Watercolor or Mixed Media Paper I used Canson 140 lb watercolor paper. Keep in mind what medium you'll be using and what type of paper will work best. Also, a thick sturdy weight paper works best since it'll be getting mailed!

  • Postcard Template Download the PDF here. Makes 4"x6" postcards.

  • Paint, Brushes, Markers, etc. I used watercolors but feel free to use other mediums, you can also use several mediums together

  • Paper Cutter or Scissors



    1. Print the postcard template on the BACKSIDE of the watercolor paper. (You want the textured side of the paper blank so you can paint on it!)

    2. With the blank, textured side of the paper facing up, start filling it up with colors and shapes using paint or whichever medium(s) you chose.

      I decided to create abstract shapes. Feel free to do the same or create a background with an image in mind (for example if you want to inspire your recipient to draw flowers, you could create splotches of colors for the flowers then green lines and shapes that can be traced over to create stems and leaves.).

      Consider what your recipient would enjoy the most!

    3. If you're using paint, let it dry completely.

    4. Optional: Once the paper is dry, stack books or some heavy items on top of them to help flatten the paper if it has curled or morphed due to the paint and water. Leave overnight if possible.

    5. Cut out the postcards. Add your message, address it and send it off!

    What do you see in these shapes and colors? What kinds of outlines would you add? I'm excited for my recipients to get these in the mail and can't wait to see how they add to it!

    UPDATE: Here are some of the postcards after my recipients drew on them! 

    Top Row (L-R) @VanesaWatercolors Vanesa used white gel pens and black ink pens to draw abstract shapes on hers

    Claudia took a collage approach and glued on elements to create a bunch of balloons!

    @Efb48 EB added a lovely touch of nature to hers by painting on a tree and grass

    Bottom Row: @MrPotatoHands Danny took a picture of his postcard then used his iPad to draw on it. This way he was able to make multiple drawings and turn the postcard in different directions too!

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