“Every leaf speaks bliss to me
Fluttering from the autumn tree.”
from ‘Fall, leaves, fall’ by Emily Bronte
Autumn is the season of falling leaves, lengthening nights and shortening days. In the natural world, it is a season that is a riot of colour. Deep reds, a spectrum of oranges, plums, purples yellows, greens and golds can be seen in nature and are often reflected in the clothes we wear and the foods that we eat.
Autumn inspires artists
Artists throughout the ages have been inspired by this season. The National Gallery has a selection of pictures that are based on autumn. These include Johann Liss’s Autumn inspired painting ‘The Fall of Phaeton’, which is inspired by the Rome countryside. Also, David Teniers the Younger autumn painting is part of a series of four small paintings is an allegory of the seasons.
Things you need for creating autumn art
Most of our activities use things that you will have at home already like string, cellotaph and scissors or will use items that you can find such as leaves, nuts and berries. You may like to buy berries, a pumpkin or dried herbs.
Here are our favourite autumn art activities:
4 ways to make art with leaves:
- Make a collage– stick leaves on paper or carboard and create a temporary artwork.
- Make a mobile– stick, pin or sew leaves together to create a hanging display. Add twigs, feathers and other found natural materials for variety.
- Arrange leaves on a plain background and make patterns. Use leaves of different colors to add variety.
- Make a rubbing using different sized leaves.
Collect autumn artifacts
Autumn is a season that is traditionally associated with the harvest. Enjoy looking and feeling fruits, nuts and seeds during the transition from summer to winter:
- Collect concors and order them according to their size, shape or patterns on their shells.
- Find smells that remind you of autumn. Enjoy apple, ripened plums, cinnamon and drying herbs such as rosemary, thyme and the last of the summer lavender.
- Make pictures using collected or bought berries.
- Carve a pumpkin.
- Collect autumn seeds like acorns and sycamore- create an artwork by gluing these to paper and card.
- Dry your found autumn materials and put them in a feely bag. Close your eyes and feel around your bag to enjoy a range of autumn textures.
Enjoy art on your autumn walk
Colours that are linked to this season are reds, oranges, dark greens and golds. You can see these reflected in nature.
- Collect every day items that reflect autumn colours and arrange on a plain background. For example, a red sock, orange hat and dark green napkin.
- As you walk around notice the changes in the trees and bushes- look at the leaf density and colours.
- Keep a nature diary. Either write down your reflections on autumn or take pictures of Autumn.
Please share pictures of your autumn creations with us. You can email images to us at email@example.com or tag us in your social media. You can also write to us with your reflections of autumn. Simply email at firstname.lastname@example.org or write to the office at … (insert postal address).
Looking for other ways to appreciate autumn? Then watch Katy’s Mindfulness videos.