Paint the Streets!

@Your doorstep

Paint the Streets is a peaceful action you can take part in now without leaving your home, a celebration of life and the natural world.  The lockdown has made us realise how connected we are to all our neighbours. We are prioritising human health, mutual aid, community and resilience. We’re here to show that another world is possible.

If you use social media, share photos of your creations mentioning @xrderby and the hashtags below.

If you don’t, just email us your photos and we’ll do it for you!


Plants wanted for action

Plants Wanted decorative graphic

Please put aside some plants for use in an action in August.  Check out the details.



Winds of Change

Paper WindmillsWe can all feel it….
The wind is turning, change is on the way
Let’s face towards it and fill our sails
Let‘s rise up on the winds of change
Let’s reclaim our future
Declare our will for a green and just world

When the only thing
that’s certain is uncertainty
And each day makes a new
impossible possible,
What are YOU asking the
Winds of Change to bring?

Download the WINDS-OF-CHANGE-Action Guidelines

Get making and post your work with the hashtags #WindsOfChange and #PaintTheStreets


Chalked Pavement for #PaintTheStreets

RIGHT: Kate saw our #PaintTheSteets campaign on Facebook and magically, a pavement was beautifully chalked in Derby.

#chalkyourwalk with positive slogans about nature or with the names of local trees & plants on the ground. Be creative & inspire to #rewild!


Like the Paint the Streets Facebook page to see more examples from all around.

You can also follow them on Instagram @xrpaintthestreets

Window Stars

Bee-autiful window stars ⭐️🐝 from @xrwestcornwall


Stencils and Posters


Get creative!

Here are some ideas for inspiration. Join in or make your own!

One Derby rebel decorated their house/street with boats to celebrate the 1 year anniversary of Extinction Rebellion’s April rebellion and the pink boat parked in the middle of Oxford Circus ⛵


Scroll down for a video showing you how to make your own paper boats.


Another painted bees and greenery on their front fence.

Use your windows to create a grid of love

Print and share messages of solidarity with your neighbours, community and the wider world by putting up tiled window displays such as these ones here

Window Art

Draw or print out your favourite image from the XR Design Programme: XR-design programme-v1.0 and trace it before colouring in and posting in your window. Or if you prefer you could freestyle with a window chalk marker pen (easy to get online). Or go for the full stained glass effect windows, like these ones made in Bristol made by Katie Wallis. Download the XR-TILED-WINDOW-PROJECT



XR Stencil & Poster making

Stencils are a fun way to create XR artworks for spray chalking and poster making. Watch this inspiring tutorial by Paris68Redux and get creative! 


With a scalpel, cutting board, roller and some paint you can make beautiful artwork that can be put up in your window or in the street when the moment feels right. If you have blocks with XR illustrations lying around, use them! And if not, here’s a folder of stencil templates and inspiration from XR Print Workshop.


Note: If you plan to Paint The Streets please avoid any vandalism; go for chalk spray or posters and do not target private property.  


XR Facemasks

Stay safe in style! Use XR image assets, found material or draw your own. 

Art Blocker Keng Keng has made these great facemask designs for us here

Also, here’s an additional facemask pattern 


Street Art – Rewilding Chalk Vines 

While our streets are free of people and traffic, we have a chance to rewild them with plants. Using stencils or free hand, we can paint vines, trees and other vegetation on the concrete where they once stood – or up the doorway, windows or walls of your home!


This project can be completed over a series of weeks where the plants ‘grow’ with each visit. Eventually, as spring progresses your plants can blossom bringing colour back to the monotone greys of our cities and towns. 

Stencils are available to get you going here: Stencil one and Stencil two. Alternatively, you can create your own designs, but whatever you do make sure to share your work #paintthestreets #gowild


Infinite Growth – Now is the time to plant wildflowers!

Lots of lawns will be left unattended due to the lockdown, so we have the chance to help nature reclaim the city! Mustard seed is cheap and will grow to around 60cm in 6 weeks on any soil: buy it here. The land needs to be a bit bare or disturbed for best effects. More info here.


A council lawn springs up and turns yellow.

A roadside verge blooms amidst empty roads.

A local park grows into a golden playground 


Seeds of Love

“High time we made a stand, shook up the views of the common man….”

Inspired by Tears for Fears song Sowing the Seeds of Love


Bring joy to your community by planting sunflower seeds in your front garden, or on your window sills. You can even plant your sunflowers out in public spaces. The aim is for fields of sunflowers to pop up around the country. This action draws on the amazing sense of community and solidarity we are all feeling whilst in isolation. 


Origami the Streets 

Most of us have by now an extensive library of printed XR matter lying about. Now is not the best time for person-to-person outreach but we can still use the colourful bits of paper to make origami animals and leave them (safely) outdoors on our daily walks.

See here for example instructions, or the web has a multitude of other resources! 


Animals and plants stickers are quick to put up during a walk. Decorate your bins! Use words that inspire a spot that game (eg. Can you see 5 foxes on your way to the groceries? Or 7 hidden anteaters on your exercise route?)


Rebel Planters

Let’s take back our streets with vegetables, fruits and flowers.

Planters are easy to make and can be hung from window sills inside or out, placed on a balcony, in your garden or even in an unused car parking space (let’s be a little rebellious)! Search pallet planters to find infinite exciting designs.


XR Birds – Skeleton Rebellion


Learn new skills and focus your mind by making a skeleton model of an endangered bird, using (mainly) recycled materials from your lock-down household. You can hang it from your living room ceiling for now, and then watch it come to life when we next fly together in protest. Join the XR Skeletons Rebellion and read the XR Birds brief for more info. Here’s also a look ‘Inside a Bird’ and an example of how to make a paper mache crow. 




CONNECT PHASE (in transition from PAUSE to this phase now)


Roadside Clean Up – Spot the difference
Let’s clear all those hideously unsightly verges while the roads are clear (social distancing rules apply). How amazing would it be to emerge from lockdown without all the plastic bags and rotting meals cluttering our roadsides. Less CO2, less pollution, less litter. Remember to share your before and after images on your local social media channels with the hashtag #litter #lessmeansmore 


Litter Art
Make what you collect into something thought-provoking, if not pleasant to look at with a message (or not), just be sure to take a photo and get it up on social media #paintthestreets


Play Streets

Create games for people to play when they are out and about. The idea is to connect people in this lonely time and transform the experience of pass-byers. Eg. “spot 5 flowers on your way to the supermarket”, hopscotch with chalk.


Scrabble the streets

Leave messages that are unbranded (non XR) Scrabbles style with key set of words posted on paths (to supermarkets for eg). Decide on 10 key words, about 7 letters each. Please keep in mind that it should not obstruct people’s way. – Get creative but please stick to the tone of messages of the CONNECT phase.


XR Kite Club

Making kites is fun and a great way to recycle plastic! They can also make excellent canvases for beautiful artwork. Let’s get to work making an army of XR kites, to deploy either on our leisurely walks, and to keep for when the lockdown is relaxed and we can all gather in visible locations for kite parties!


You can easily find instructions online that range from extremely simple (for those with small kids and/or limited practical skills) to very ambitious (for those who like most everyone has lots of time on their hands). Make, organise, deploy!



Share it


Use the #paintthestreets and #rewild hashtags mention @xrderby and get it on all your social media!

Like the Paint the Streets Facebook page to see more examples from all around.  Share their posts too!

You can also follow them on Instagram @xrpaintthestreets Share their posts to your story or use the Repost app



15 April 2020: It’s a year ago today that the biggest act of mass participation civil disobedience in UK history put the climate and ecological crisis at the top of the news and on everyone’s lips.

XR Derby had its first meetings during this time. We have achieved a lot, including inducting and training many rebels, designing and carrying out effective and well-reported protests, working with many other local organisations, liaising with national and regional XR local groups, taking a large number of rebels to the October Rebellion and the March for Everyone. Our advice and systems have been used by other local groups. We have refreshed the ecological discussion in Derby and beyond.

A year on, coronavirus has changed everything – governments have delivered once impossible emergency mobilisations.

#PaintTheStreets launched today. The Paint the Streets protest is a loving and uplifting way of showing another world is possible and for people to call out this message visually to their neighbours, saying local community and nature are vital for our survival and we demand a better future, leaving no one behind.