Watercolor Leaf {A how to craft project}


Easy Watercolor Leaf Tutuorial | fall crafts | #fallcrafts
This is one of my favorite Fall projects! Give it a try and share your results, either in the comments below or on Instagram – tag me: @eileenmckenna.


  • heavyweight watercolor paper – I used Fluid Easy Block
  • watercolor paints (3 colors – light, medium, dark. I used yellow, orange (or red), and brown.)
  • water
  • paintbrushes (1 thick, 1 thin)
  • scissors
  • pencil
  • leaf (for shape and inspiration)


  1. Trace or draw leaf onto the watercolor paper
  2. Cut out the leaf shape
  3. Use paintbrush and water to wet one side of the leaf shape
  4. Soak up yellow paint from your palette, with a very wet brush (you can even dip the brush into the water after absorbing the paint)
  5. Paint the entire leaf yellow (or a light color of your choice)
    leaf2 leaf3
  6. With a wet brush, absorb the orange paint and paint the edges of your leaf. The orange will bleed into the yellow – this is a good thing!
  7. Use a thinner (and not as wet) brush and absorb the brown paint. Paint thin lines onto the leaf. (Copy the veins from your real leaf.)
  8. Allow the leaf to dry a bit. (The dryer the paper is, the less the paint will bleed.) Then, add more thin brown lines.

When I first showed my kids my painted leaf, they thought it was a real leaf!
Have fun! Can’t wait to see what you make. 🙂

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Author: Eileen McKenna {my creative resolution}

Web and Print Designer living in New York. I blog about painting, illustration, and designing patterns. Inquires are welcome.

17 thoughts on “Watercolor Leaf {A how to craft project}

  1. Oh wow, your leaf does look real! Thanks for showing your steps. Great work!

  2. Awesome! I will try to do it this weekend! Thanks for the inspiration! 🙂

  3. Love your colors! Enjoyed seeing your process! Happy fall! 🍁🍂🌿

  4. Thanks for sharing your process that gave you these BEAUTIFUL results!

  5. Fun! Lovely idea, thank you for sharing the inspiration and the process.

  6. nice tutorial….lovely idea!!

  7. Wonderful! Love the rich colors, Eileen!

  8. Thus is ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS!!! It does look real!!! I am trying this!!! 😉

  9. Pingback: Waiting for the leaves to change | my creative resolution

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