September 15–21

Happy First Day of Autumn!

The delightful first week of the leaf challenge has quickly flown by! It is amazing how just one leaf alone seems to be just “okay”. Then one-by-one, you begin adding them to the collection, and the inner thrill bubbles to the point there is a MUST to paint the next day. As the collection grows, the leaves have been finding a temporary home on one of the walls in my studio…

2015 Autumn Leaves Challenge – Week 1
Watercolor, Pencil, Ink, Coffee
Size 4 x 4 


One of the greatest discoveries a man makes, one of his great surprises, is to find he can do what he was afraid he couldn’t do. —Henry Ford

For those interested in my tools…
Winsor & Newton travel size watercolor kit

Grumbacher Academy Watercolors
Cadmium Yellow Deep Hue
Cadmium Red Light Hue
Sap Green & Hooker’s Green Deep Hue
Burnt Umber

Brushes worked with
[6] Protégé 513 Round
[2/0] Jack Richeson 9000 Signature Series

Higgins non-waterproof pigment-bases drawing ink

And once again, I coffee stained my paper after I was completed painting the leaves. It is rather delightful to have your studio smell off coffee!

Interested in seeing the daily leaf posts?
(Note: I started these posts a few days later than the actual challenge started)


33 thoughts on “September 15–21

  1. These are lovely, BB! People call me the leaf whisperer, but that title belongs to YOU. Your leaves really are wonderful!!! I will try, try again, for my leaves to have the wonderful detail and texture of yours. Wow! Really something. Quite lovely!!! Thanks for yet more inspiration!

    1. Aww, thank you, Laura! I do love playing up the texture and detail. Really, this summer I am focusing on just “letting go” in my art. I will remain focused on the subject, but am learning to be a little more free. Messes are FUN to make.
      Your leaves are so very lovely. Don’t try to change… just keep creating and developing your style. I love each of us artists can paint the same subjects, but “us” goes into each one.

      1. I like that too, and messes are fun! 🙂 I just want to get better. I enjoy abstract and semi-abstract work too, but there’s still a part of me that would like to get better at realistic stuff. Leaves are a fun challenge, and I think, easier than most flowers. It just seems more doable somehow.

    1. Quotes are amazing! I spend hours pouring over quotes and finding ones that speak the words that I feel. I love discovering things that I can do that I thought I couldn’t… you feel so brave and courageous after you face a fear 🙂

  2. Your colors are so vibrant and radiant! A lovely “pile” of leaves! I like how you stained your paper with coffee too! My favorite is the chestnut – I think that is what it is?! :-)))

    1. Yes, it is a chestnut! We have two trees in our yard, and the squirrels are having a hay day making the yard a HUGE mess. It comes to the point you don’t want to go outside barefoot, or you might be stepping on something with those hurtful pokes.
      Thank you so much! The brighter the color of leaves, the more my heart sings. And coffee… goodness… its another wonderful mess to play with staining your paper. 🙂

  3. Your collection is fantastic. Love the paintings, the blending of colors, shadow and textures. They look like they might blow off the paper with the next gust of wind. Thank you for sharing these, most inspiring.

    1. Aw, Thank you so much! I completely enjoyed playing with the texture with these leaves. It is so much fun to pick up a leaf and sit down and bring it to life on paper with a little of you trying to peek through. Thanks for stopping by to view and leave a comment! 🙂

  4. BB: How do we join you in your leaf challenges? I don’t do Instagram nor Facebook…lol. PS: This post is a wonderful collection…you are the leaf queen, whereas I am the leaf litterer!! Do you ever actually paint with coffee? I’ve seen some most intriguing work elsewhere a few years ago.

    1. Great question! You don’t need Instagram or Facebook. This is just a fun challenge to grow in skill. You don’t even need to share your leaves, but if you would like to… post them to your own blog page. So simple! I can’t wait to see what you create!
      I have not ever painted with coffee, but what a delightful idea! I look forward to looking into coffee painting. 🙂

      1. Well, that sounds simple enough…I’ve already posted some leaf abstracts recently. I’m wondering if I should make a link to one of your posts, as part of my post? I think I will…
        Re the coffee painting, sorry I don’t have any links to give you, but there is Google/Bing!

    1. Thank you, Leslie! This year has been a great challenge so far… And some days it feels near impossible to get a completed leaf in. But magically they get finished :). How is the challenge going for you?

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