Nature’s way: Printing with leaves

Over and over again, we have heard and read that nature is the subject that has inspired artists and their works. In abstract art paintings, nature designs seem to have gained its popularity because of its beautiful and colorful themes and its ability to convey meanings easily despite the use of just small part of it. Leaves for one makes a bold statement in creating abstract paintings. If you want to create your own original abstract art painting, try doing it with leaves – not only will it create beautiful pieces, it is also very economical since leaves are widely available everywhere! All you need to do is to pick them! Let the fun starts!

Basically, you only need different materials that are already widely available: (1) the leaves, you may just pick up anywhere but if possible, use fresh leaves since they are flatter than the crinkly, old ones but if you really desire some added texture, you may still use them. But make sure that they do not break easily; (2) Cloth, paper or any other surface where you want to have your design on; and (3) Colors or paints, you may make use of any medium you want – from pastels to tempera to other paints with brushes;(4) Plastic or newspaper to protect your table from stray paints or colors; and paper weights if you need to weight down your cloth or paper.

There are different ways to transfer your leaf design on your paper or cloth. Select one, or combine them, to make the output that you design:

  1. Negative printing. Place your leaves on top of your paper and roll or paint colors all over it. Remove the leaf and – voila! – Negative leaf design. You may also want to try to make use of a fern sprayed with paint to create a striking and bold negative print.
  2. Positive print. Simply paint your leaf with color and press them against your paper. If you’re using chalk or pastels, put them under your paper and rub off the pastels on top of the paper. It will create the design of your leaf.

Here’s a tip: you may also try to use flowers.  Enjoy painting!

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