One of the many things I love about our ongoing classes is that our projects constantly revolve reflecting and celebrating the season. This week in our parent and child classes we made leaf prints to celebrate fall. We printed on our watercolor paintings we made the week before. The combination of the vivacious and free watercolor and the graphic leaves is so well suited for each other.
I gave the kids baskets after reading a story about fall and the falling of leaves. Then the parents, children and I set out to find leaves that had fallen to the ground. We looked at the different colors, the different shapes and different sizes of the leaves. It was a bit like a treasure hunt.
We do a lot of printmaking projects with the kids so I have plexi-glass plates on hand to use as the inking plates, but you can use plastic placemats because the Blick printing ink is completely washable. You can also get the brayers (rollers) at Blick Art.
The rolling of ink on the ink plates is the fun part for this age. They love the way it feels and and the way is sounds. I used black and gold ink for this project so that the beautiful watercolor paintings wouldn't get muddied with all the different colors. The black is so wonderfully graphic against the soft pinks and greens of the watercolor paintings.
After rolling the ink onto the brayer, the parents then helped the kids roll the ink onto a leaf using the brayer. The print won't work if you just place the leaf onto the inking plate. The ink needs to be rolled on.
Then the leaf gets placed face down onto the watercolor painting and a clean brayer is used to roll the leaf down which will then leave a clear print where you can see the veins and shape of the leaf.
They can do as many different leaves as they want.
Or do just one like this little guy did. After the one leaf he wanted to spend the rest of his time rolling the ink on the inking plate. The minimalism works beautifully.
You are always welcome to leave any questions or comments. I am happy to answer them.