Enso and Leaves

Enso III, September 2016, 4 x 4 inches

I have a collection of dried leaves that I keep flat, under plexiglass, on my long table. I love using them to print leaf shapes on my paintings.

detail of Leaf I, September 2016

Above, I used a maple leaf for Leaf I. The leaves are pretty durable. I paint the back side with acrylics, watercolors or printing ink, place the paper on the painted leaf, and use a wooden spoon to rub the ink from the leaf into the paper.

Leaf I, September 2016

When I'm finished printing, I gently clean the leaves with a wet rag. In time, pieces of the leaves will start to crumble off and they evolve into a new leaf. This is evident in the first image, Enso III, September 2016, at the top of this post. I've had that Alder leaf for over a year now.

In nature nothing exists alone.
Rachel Carson

joining Sunday Sketches


  1. I have some Fall leaves under some glass on a table. But, I never thought of using them as a stamp. Clever, very pretty results.

  2. What a fabulous idea, I saw a demo where the leaves were painted with water and then pressed onto the watercolour paper, then the artist used paints to finish off the leaf. I never thought to use the paint on the leaf!
    I will have to give this a go. Thanks for the inspiration
    Happy Sunday Sketches Juana :D

  3. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this idea so very much! It looks phantastic!

  4. I have modge podged leaves, to keep them pretty longer. A few coats makes them feel sort of "rubbery". You have made me curious. Wonder if modge podge would help your leaves last longer. Or if the paint would start to muck it up and make them unusable for stamping. Think I need to investigate :) Beautiful work Juana :) Love the soft tones mixed with the deeper leaf colors.

  5. These are fantastic prints! I love how they change as the leaf begins to deteriorate. I could spend days doing this.

  6. What divine and elegant creations ~ excellent ~ thanks,

    Happy Week to you ~ ^_^

  7. These are beautiful leaf prints. I collected a small pot full last week and attempted to dry them flat in order to paint them but was sadly, unsuccessful. I absolutely love the beauty found in each leaf...especially in the autumn. Wonderful work, Juana.

  8. Thank you for all your lovely comments.

    Sheila, that is a good point, in the past, I have covered my more delicate leaves with coats of glossy varnish.

  9. each of your prints is wonderful.
    such a lovely way to enjoy them, both the leaf and the art.
    also a lovely way to enjoy autumn.


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