Ever wanted to learn how to paint a leaf in less than 30 seconds?Yes, you heard that right.Once you read through this, you’ll be amazed at how easy it is to paint a leaf.You’ll be an expert in no time!Todays tutorial is a quick and easy demonstration on how to paint a simple leaf in watercolor.Plus scroll down till the end to win supplies box from Craftsy.

Learn how to paint a simple leaf in watercolors in this tutorial by Zakkiya Hamza of Inkstruck Studio.

It’s funny that I’ve done so many tutorials before on IS that includes painting leaves but a “how to do so” never made an appearance. This post on how to paint a simple leaf in watercolor will definitely change all that.Before I start, I just want to put in a disclaimer that this tutorial will not teach you to paint every single element in a leaf. I’m going to teach you the basic character of a leaf.If you’ve seen the works of Yao Cheng(one of my favorite illustrators), you’ll notice that her paintings are simple but so full of character.

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Materials you’ll need are:-

1.The simple leaf-one color

Here,I’m going to use one single color to paint the entire leaf.This is a one stroke process.The only reason I took my hand off(if you look at the photographs) was to position the camera.But by loading enough pigment and water in your brush, you’ll be able to finish it in one stroke.

Step 1:Take ample color and water on your watercolor brush.By touching the tip of the brush to the paper,slowly move upwards.As you reach the centre of the leaf, apply pressure on your brush.As you move further release the pressure until you reach the tip of the leaf.

Step 2:Now we’re going to repeat the same as above in the other direction.Without taking the brush off the paper,slowly start moving downwards.

Step 3:You’ll notice how I apply pressure on the brush as I move downwards.

Learn how to paint a simple leaf in watercolors in this tutorial by Zakkiya Hamza of Inkstruck Studio.

Step 4:Continue applying pressure dragging the paint along.

Step 5:As you reach the centre,apply maximum pressure and then slowly release as you reach the other tip.Make sure you leave that little white space in the middle.This is to convey the illusion that the leaf has a centre vein.

Step 6:Complete the leaf by painting a small stem.

It’s easy to get lost in the process of creating a leaf by overworking it.The key to painting with watercolors is simplicity.Of course, of your subject calls for realism, go ahead and get down all the nitty gritty details.I bet you can now proudly say that you can paint a simple leaf in watercolor in less that half a minute!(Bragging rights allowed!)

2.The simple leaf-two colors

To paint a simple leaf in watercolor using two colors involves the exact same steps as explained above.Hence,I’m not going to explain every step in detail.In the photographs you’ll see that after I complete one side of the leaf,I start painting from the bottom end again.Here the possibility of finishing the painting in one single stroke is not feasible.So it doesn’t matter if you start the second half from either end of the painting.

The colors I’ve used below probably look very bright but when they dry,the colors wash down considerably.

A few tips:

  • Clean your brush completely with water when you take a new color.
  • Let the colors meet when they’re still wet and you’ll see how gently they seep into each other creating magic.

Learn how to paint a simple leaf in watercolors in this tutorial by Zakkiya Hamza of Inkstruck Studio.



Craftsy is a one stop shop for all your creative interests. They have classes for everything from sewing to cooking to art.You name it and they have it.I’m definitely eying this Painting Trees class by Ronald Pratt to purchase in the coming months.I bet it’s going to be my creative fix for the holidays.

Inkstruck Studio has teamed up with Craftsy to give you a chance at winning a class of your choice plus the supplies required.Yes! You heard that right.You’ll not only be able to win a class of your choice but they’ll also be sending you all the supplies you require for it.All you need to do is click the button below and you’ll be taken to the giveaway page.Signing up for Craftsy is free.Click here to sign up if you’re not a member already.

The giveaway is open to all residents of U.S. and Canada and will close at 11:59 p.m. Mountain Time Zone on September 30th, 2015.

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What do you think?

I hope this tutorial on how to paint a simple leaf in watercolor has proved to be useful.Keep practicing and creating and you’ll soon be able to create wreaths and bunches in no time.As always e-mail me if you’ve tried this tutorial or use the #makeinkstruck on Instagram.Cheers!