Leaf Prints

I love incorporating elements from nature in our art projects. Nature provides free art supplies, and I feel it’s important for kids to connect with nature on a regular basis. Emily enjoyed gathering leaves from the yard for this one. I have a feeling we will be doing more block-printing type projects in the future, since this was such a hit! We used water-soluble block printing ink and a brayer for this, but if you do not have those at home, you could easily achieve the same effect using crayons with the second technique below.

The first time we tried this, Emily rolled the brayer in the ink and then transferred the ink to the back side of a leaf.

Lay the leaf back side down and use the back of a spoon to really get a good print on the paper. Lift it up and admire your beautiful print!
The second technique we used was more like a leaf rubbing. Emily placed the leaf under the paper, and rolled the brayer over it to get a nice print. You could get the same effect by using the side of a crayon instead. We used all the leaves Emily gathered, and there were several different kinds. Later, we tried to identify the trees using a field guide. She made lots and lots of prints!


  1. I think Gerrick would really like this! I’ve got to get a brayer. 🙂

  2. I love when you can combine lessons with things they love. You got to go outside, create art and learn about leaves and trees. Who says art and science don’t go well together?!

  3. Mama King says

    Lu loves using the brayer! This is such a fun project with beautiful results. We like to do this in the fall but you’ve inspired me do do it in the Spring too!

  4. Rachel@oneprettything.com says

    So many fun projects this week! I’ll be linking.

  5. MaryAnne says

    Very nice. We made crayon leaf prints a few days ago…

  6. Val in the Rose Garden says

    That is SO cool! I really like the roller idea. 🙂


  7. sunnymama says

    They’re very effective! I must get hold of a roller and give this a go with sunnyboy. Thanks 🙂

  8. Melissa @ A Child at Play says

    We will have to try this one – thanks for the idea!

  9. I love the idea of using the roller. I know the kids would love it too.

    Thanks for another great idea.

  10. Awesome! Check out Inleaf on Etsy.
    She does the most beautiful things.
    Your prints are right up there with hers!