Berry Smudges and Leaf Prints: Finding and Making Colors from Nature

Dutton, 2001


Berry Smudges and Leaf Prints is a 40-page book for children aged seven to eleven. Spreads that show children experiencing nature alternate with spreads depicting children creating their own artworks using materials gathered from nature. The book is an unusual combination of psychological information mixed with natural history and hands-on arts activities, all organized separately by color.


Where else, all on the same spread, can you learn, for example: where to look for red in nature; why red fruit helps plants reproduce; that red is a color associated with excitement (not just because we think so but because scientists have measured certain changes in body chemistry when people look at red); and then use berries to create a picture, first considering how ancient people probably used berry stains to make some of the world’s first art back in the days before paints and crayons.


Hardcover is out of print

Some new and used copies available at and