How to Paint an Ocean on a Bedroom Wall

Updated April 17, 2017

Whether you are decorating a bedroom for a toddler who loves fish or a teenager who dreams about surfing the waves, an ocean mural is an inexpensive way to add life to a dreary room. Get all hands on deck to make the project quick and easy, and by the end of the day, your bedroom will have a watery makeover personalised to suit your needs.

Move all of the furniture to the centre of the room to provide easy access to the walls. Tape along window sills, door frames and floor moulding to protect trim. Lay tarps over the floor and furniture to keep paint off of them.

Prime the walls using a primer tinted to the shade of the main wall colour you plan to use. This will allow the paint to adhere more easily and reduce the number of coats you need to apply.

Paint the main wall colour you have chosen. Any shade of blue will work as the backdrop for your ocean scene. To add a wave effect, paint wave peaks along the top 12 inches of the walls, filling in below. The white primer will look like the sky behind your painted waves.

Use the other paint colours, stencils, sponges and paint brushes to add underwater detail to your ocean. Add colourful schools of fish, a large sea turtle, sharks or dolphins to the wall, and then add details to the "ocean" floor. You can paint rocks or coral along the bottom of the wall to simulate the sea bed, along with painted images of crabs, starfish or other bottom dwellers.

Pull up the tape, scoring it with a utility knife to prevent ripping any paint from the wall. Fold the tarps in on themselves to prevent any paint spills or drips from damaging the floor, and allow the paint to dry for 24 hours before moving the furniture back against the walls.


Acrylic craft paints work well to paint a mural, and they are a much cheaper option than buying many quarts of wall paint. You can also buy speciality paints that glow in the dark or have glitter added to give your designs a special touch. A sea sponge is a great tool to simulate the frothy foam of ocean waves. Layer hues of blue and white for a realistic surface effect along the top boarder of the wall. Look at pictures on the internet or in books to find sea life you like. Use these images as inspiration when you are painting your ocean.

Things You'll Need

  • Primer
  • Blue wall paint
  • Assorted paint colours
  • Roller
  • Paint tray
  • Painter's tape
  • Utility knife
  • Tarps
  • Assorted paint brushes
  • Stencils
  • Sponges


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