Watercolor Leaf Rubbing

By using certain crayon colors matched with brown watercolor paint, you can create a cool, almost neon affect with your leaf rubbings!

What you'll need:

  • Various leaves
  • 2 sheets of white copy paper
  • Glue stick
  • 2 paper clips
  • Orange and green crayons
  • Water color paints: brown, orange, yellow, red
  • 1 sheet orange construction paper

How to make it:

  1. Place a piece of white paper onto the work surface. Arrange leaves face down, onto the paper. Tack them in place with a glue stick. (See photo.)
  2. Place the second piece of paper over the top of the first and hold together with a couple of paper clips.
  3. Use orange and green crayons to color over the top of the leaves on the paper, causing the imprint of the leaves' veins to show through. (See photo.)
  4. Remove the paper clips and take the paper with the leaves out from underneath your rubbing.
  5. Paint over the top of the entire picture using brown watercolor paint. Water down the paint so it is rather thin and add a bit more paint when painting over the leaves since it will bead up a little. Spread the paint around with your fingers and spread it around. You will see the colors of the crayons come through the paint. (See photo.)
  6. Mount the white paper on a larger piece of colored construction paper  to give it a framed look.


  1. This creates a pretty cool picture on the back of your painting as well! Turn it over to see the result.
  2. Look for leaves that are free of bugs or any small growths.
  3. You do not have to use a glue stick to attach the leaves, but it does help to keep them in place.