There are many ways to create these leaves and it can easily be done with or without the addition of any of the metallics I mention below. I’ve only recently started to add metallics into my work and as long as the effects are subtle, kind of a surprise for the viewer that looks a little closer, I’m happy with the effects. There is something mesmerizing about watching the reflective particles dance in the paint puddles that adds to the zen effect of painting these leaves!
Recommended Supply List
Cold press watercolor paper, 140 lb. paper – I cut a sheet of 9 x 12 inch paper down to make four “postcards” of 4.5 x 6 inches. This would also be a suitable project for a journal or sketchbook.
White Eraser or SumoGrip* Eraser (https://amzn.to/3fJRgcY) – It’s black but don’t let that fool you!
Watercolor pigments I used (Most are Daniel Smith):
Hansa Yellow Medium (https://amzn.to/3iJAQTf); Pyrrol Orange (https://amzn.to/3anVyVz); Perylene Red (https://amzn.to/31QmDNb); Quinacridone Violet (https://amzn.to/33Z03F4); Raw Sienna (); Burnt Sienna (); Indian Red (); Burnt Umber (https://amzn.to/2DPOqFH); Rich Green Gold* (https://amzn.to/32NwILh) and Holbein Mineral Violet (https://amzn.to/34UdNRF). *If you have M. Graham’s Azo Green or D. Smith Green Gold, you can use those instead of Rich Green Gold. You can also use Sap Green (https://amzn.to/31Nd579), you’ll just need to add a little more yellow and violet to it.
Watercolor brush, Round, Size 6 or 8 (https://amzn.to/39fMgu5)
Watercolor brush with a sharp point, Size 2 or 4
Paper towels, tissues, and two water containers
Brown Waterproof Marker – if you intend to add lettering to your artwork. I used a Uni Pin .5 Marker in brown (https://amzn.to/3fTaFaH)
This project uses a very subtle touch of metallics and they do not show up in the photographs. This is strictly optional. You could also use the metallic markers or pens listed below to create metallic touches in your leaves. The watercolor pencils, metallic gel pens and metallic markers listed below are all used primarily for the lettering. If you do not intend to add lettering to your artwork, you will not need these items.
Metallic Watercolors – I used the the Kuretake Gansai Tambi with 6 Starry Colors* (https://amzn.to/3ipuWWS).
Watercolor Pencils – Faber-Castell are my preferred WC pencils (https://amzn.to/31NGTAw). If you have access to open stock at your neighborhood art store, look at reds, browns, golds, oranges, and ochres for this project.
Metallic Gel Pens in Gold, Bronze, Rose Gold, etc. These are my favorites: Uniball Bronze and Gold Impact bold tip gel pens. and Sakura Gelly Roll Metallic pens (https://amzn.to/34V2msY). Your local art store may have open stock and you can select the colors that would work with this project.
Metallic Markers in Gold, Bronze, Rose Gold, etc. This set is my current favorite: STA Metallic Markers (https://amzn.to/2GnaF6Z).
Graphite transfer paper* (https://amzn.to/2WCYVCq) – If you purchase transfer paper, make sure it is Wax Free)
White Uni•Ball Signo* gel pen (https://amzn.to/3fOI8Ea) or other white gel pen
If you purchase graphite transfer paper please be sure it is Wax Free.
To transfer your project without graphite transfer paper, you can use a window or light box. You can also scribble graphite on the back of the paper to transfer the design.
Affiliate Links To Favorite Items
*All items marked with an asterisk (*) are items, some of them new, which I have found to work particularly well with the art projects I work on. Several of these items were recommendations from students and I thank you for them!
I have provided links to these items. They are affiliate links. I receive a small kickback if you should purchase from Amazon. It does not change the price you pay. You may find some of these items in your local art store as well.