My criteria for the Perfect Fall Leaf is that it contain every color of the season in one feuille. Obviously, as soon as I laid eyes on this beauty I knew I’d found perfection for this year’s Annual Fall Leaf Painting Tutorial (2013).
If in previous years you’ve followed my Annual Fall Leaf Painting Tutorial, you already know that after I’ve laid my leaf on 90-pound Canson watercolor paper and traced its entire outer edge, I divide the leaf into its “cells”. The secret to painting a Fall leaf is to paint it cell-by-cell.
I am using size 0 and 00 brushes and my cute little set of Windsor Newton watercolors here — the colors are very bright and rich. Let the watercolor dry throughly before you start a new cell.
This way, you can let the paint colors bleed into each other within each cell (see below, I’m letting my yellow paint bleed into the green)…
…and still keep all the other cells clean and bright and not muddied-up as you add to the leaf (cell by cell):
I’ll just let you watch for the next few frames as I paint in details, cell by cell:
I have to say that I find Fall Leaf Painting to be very relaxing, especially when I add the tiniest details.
The great thing about Fall Leaf Painting…
…is that in the end, you have a leaf that will never fade or crumble or get disgusting looking (tea bag included for scale):
This is especially true with oak leaves! Hoo boy, nothing dies faster and uglier than an oak leaf. That’s why I was overjoyed when I found an unusually ripe oak leaf this year and was able to paint it before the poor thing went the way of all fallen leaves.
For more Fall Leaf Painting Tutorials, please check the Archives of this blog under Watercolor Tutorials. Sure, you might have to wade through some Cat Painting and a lot of Garden Painting and loads of Watercolor Failures that I’ve posted from time to time…but enjoy the browse and if you care to send me a note you can always reach me at vivianswift at yahoo dot com.