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How to Colour a Leaf

There are lots of leaves in Johanna Basford colouring books and sometimes it can be tricky to know how to colour them. Here is an idea for a leaf from Magical Jungle.

I have decided to colour this one in Faber Castell Polychromos but you can use any brand of pencils just with several different shades of colour. You do not even need to choose greens!

I will start with my palest green and I have chosen the May Green and I colour the whole leaf in a light layer. You can get a fairly even layer by holding the pencil away from the tip and holding it so that you colour using the side of the lead rather than the point.

I then take the Earth Green Yellowish and do another layer all over the whole leaf again apart from the vein down the middle. I used the same colouring technique to try to keep it even.

Next, I want to add some shape to the leaf and I do this by applying my next colour; permanent green olive, just to the centre and edges. I applied more layers on the edges and then less and less towards the centre to fade it into the lighter colour.

Then I take Chromium Green Opaque and go back over the areas I wanted to be darker. I do not cover such a large area as I did with the last green though.

Lastly, I use my darkest green which is the Chrome Oxide Green, to make a dark line along the center vein.

You can stop here, but as polychromos like to be layered up, I repeat every step but in reverse.

I like to then go over the whole leaf in a yellow colour as it makes it more vibrant and warm and can help to blend all of the greens together. I have used the Light Yellow Glaze for this.

If you are interested in buying or finding out more about the materials that I have used, then please follow the links below:

Magical Jungle by Johanna Basford

Faber Castell Polychromos Pencils

I also have videos on how to colour a leaf which you might be interested in watching: