Monochromatic leaf “mosaic” art project

We went camping last week and the leaves were gorgeous! It’s just enough cooler and a higher elevation at Fall Creek Falls, so their leaves were ahead of the leaves around here. So many of the leaves were in the process of changing color. I walked around all week oohing and aaahing over the leaves on the ground and the trees.

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As you can see, I was a bit partial to the red leaves :).

I really wanted to do an art project that would reflect this beauty, but be in keeping with our study of color. While browsing for projects, I came across this idea over at mer mag and loved it. Since February is four months away and I of course didn’t want to wait, my friend Beth and I tweaked her idea.

Instead of an entire page of a color, we wondered, what if we made it in a leaf shape? I quickly searched online and easily found leaf templates for free. I found several very nice templates here. I enlarged them 140% to fit on my watercolor paper. Beth and I drew very light grids with pencil on all the leaves. Looking back, we’d just print out one template, mark a grid on it, then copy the leaves onto watercolor paper.IMG_2213

I rummaged through all my acrylic paints, both in tubes and the crafting type in bottles and came up with several reds, then used an orange to make a pop of color, and mixed even more reds using yellows and even raw sienna to change the coloring.

Leaf in progress

Leaf in progress

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This was one of the younger students. She got tired of filling in each square separately and filled in several at a time.

The kids used mainly flat brushes and were encouraged to try to use one stroke per square to try to fill it up, but it was OK if there was some white space. IMG_2209

They didn’t always do that, of course :). Some kids were more interested in having each square perfectly filled in.IMG_2214

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This student ran a very light glaze over all to hide all the white spaces. I love to see the creativity in kids!

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We’re going to cut them out and mount them either on black or green paper for a contrast. I was very happy with how these came out. I made a yellow and orange one myself, just for fun:)IMG_2304 This was a mixed group of ages–from 7 to 12. For older students, you could make them responsible for mixing the colors, or even choosing colors, including a green with the yellow or red to see how a leaf in the process of turning would look.

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