We try to change out the front door stained glass artwork with the seasons—always keeping it fresh and seasonal. So last week, we made an Autumn leaves painting and hung it in place of the spring/summer artwork that had been up for months.
We’re not surrounded by Autumn leaves outside yet but there are a few, and there’s a nip in the air at night. Fall is definitely here and we were ready to make a new welcome to our house artwork.
Here’s how we made it:
Autumn Leaves Painting
- Leaves (the fresher and less brittle the better)
- Easel paper (or other thin-ish paper)
- Watercolor paint in Autumn colors (liquid watercolor paint works great)
- Vegetable oil (optional)
1. Arrange your leaves together on the table, vein side up. Place the sheet of paper over the leaves and tape down the corners to hold it in place. (You can even tape the leaves down by the stems if you like, although we don’t usually bother.)
2. Using the broad side of an unwrapped crayon—or a crayon rock—rub firmly over the paper to reveal the leaf skeletons. Use different crayon colors if desired.
3. Paint over the crayon leaf rubbings with watercolor paint for a crayon resist effect.
Watch the watercolors bead up and slide off the crayon lines yet soak into the paper.
Something we did a little differently this time, is define each of the leaves with paint so it looks more like an Autumn leaves painting and less like an abstract painting.
4. For hanging our Autumn leaves painting on the front door, I glued the top edge around a thin dowel-like curtain rod using a hot glue gun. You could do that with a regular wood dowel for hanging on the wall as well if you wanted and just hang with a ribbon or string.
5. You could hang your painting up as is, as Daphne chose to do with hers, or you could paint the back of the painting with vegetable oil to give it a translucent stained glass effect as I did with our joint artwork.
Have you tried leaf rubbings with your kids yet? With or without watercolor paint?
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