A Leaf in Nature

Finding a leaf for artists is nearly like finding gold.

Simple things.  

Every day items that normally are unnoticed and trodden underfoot,  can become ‘art objects.’

gum leaf pen illustration, poem, debi riley art basics
Nature’s Gum Leaf, Illustration pen,  haiku,   debiriley.com


Nature’s  Gold


Finding the leaf as I was about to step on it, I picked it up.

The speckles and spots reminded me of my quail eggs.  So I kept it for my break.


I dashed off the quick sketch  while taking a break in between classes, in about 15 minutes.


Art need not take hours,  to “count.”   To be “worthy.”

Quick sketches and color studies  can often express far more in a short space of time.  In those shorter spaces of time one can be more open and in tune with the subject itself.




Materials used:

4B pencil

Brown Micron Pen

Handmade fiber embedded paper




Posts suggested with tree themes:

Simply,  watercolors 

Trees and Bark, watercolors 

Power of the Line 

The Thin Red Line 

Taming the Dragon, of  Perfectionism 








  1. Thank you for the reminder that art doesn’t have to take hours to be “worthy!” ❤️ I have a fascination with leaves. They are such a great inspiration! Your sketch is fabulous, Debi! 😄

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I wanted to tell you that I appreciate you so much Debi….all your posts, your wisdom and your know how….and the fact that you are always willing to share your knowledge and yourself is a big deal in my book. You have a kindred, nurturing spirit that really boosts those around you. You are the quiet bubbling spring in a zen forest. 🙂 lol oh my goodness, I am getting touchy feely! I think that now and then we all need to hear how much we matter to others. This has been working itself out for a while, today I just had to tell you!

    Liked by 2 people

    • dear M, thank you; it comes at at ‘good time’ for me to hear just that! I too can get discouraged. with posts, followers numbers/drop or climb.. SILLY Things. That you say I’m like a spring in a zen forest… I love that!! 🙂
      the minute I spied your site, with you out there… at the River – I just smiled. so grateful that we’re friends now too. Thanks, for sharing this and letting me know 🙂 woo hoo! cheers, Debi

      Liked by 2 people

      • You are welcomed dear friend 🙂 and I do remember you and my daughter being the first to like and follow me…..and when I saw your blog, well, I felt like I just walked into nature where I feel the most comfortable. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • you must be up to around a few hundred ? now or so I’d guess. It takes time. well, for ….me it has. 🙂 i have the little sidebar thingie that says how many people and views have occurred. one day – soon, I’ll get to 1000. then I’ll have a party!

        Liked by 1 person

      • i meant followers… and YES. its easy, I do look at the charts to see how things are going. I realise its a slow process to build a business.. but gosh. this is Slower n molasses in January! lol hehehe then I … doubt. wonder. I’ll be grandma moses before this site gets going good.

        Liked by 1 person

      • isn’t that the way it is for artists? I think that unless you are a Thomas Kinkaid that is marketable, it is a tough business. Art that is truly something that touches the heart and soul, that is hard to market. We are a throw away, feel good society and truly art like yours is one to be cherished and savored and people are too much in a darn hurry or too flippant in their attitudes and views. Hehe….I got all philosophical on you! that is Me! I love how you call me M by the way, something endearing about it. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’ll have to nod abit here; I think the society demands a magic instant wand. for all wants. life, is not like that. not mine, at any rate. ps…. very pleased you like my nickname for you 🙂 also, “savored” is a favorite word of mine.

        Liked by 1 person

      • 145 is awesome! yippee skippee dance and of course, more coming your way! people LOVE your style, posts, and your dedication to getting outside and taking those photos 🙂
        hey, just asking to be sure, can I pin even the River photos too? thanks

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yep, hoping for more….why though? just being coy, hehe. So my river photos here or there? I haven’t set up a pin option…..you might have to guide me on this. So to answer your question, yes, you have permission. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • I think WP has a button .. I pressed.. will check again! lol, blind leading the blind! too funny and…. one suggestion that might be good is when you put your art on Pinterest, to make sure you put your website on it, or in the description. Or Both. on it, is best. below, and people can delete. then no one knows who, the artist was. not good.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I have editor program on Mac, “preview” that lets me do it. there’s others that will too. Looking at your paintings on Pinterest…if someone deleted the text below…. poof! 😦 and if you put yubagold.com Then, you drive more people to your website!! isn’t that great 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. That is a fantastic sketch. I also agree with your line that art need not take hours to count. I do see this from many photographers who talk about the hours they spend editing a photo. While I agree that you need to take the time to do a bit of art/writing carefully, you can also do it quickly (reasonably) if the inspiration strikes

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I like this combination of illustration and handwriting, which Horst Janssen has made very often. That’s a very nice composition. I like naturalistic illustrations a lot. Cheers Mitza

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Yes, thank you for the brilliant reminder, and now you have something to remember that break for all time! And so do we! We have a new art armoire setup in our kitchen and while I’m waiting for lunch to heat up, dash over and paint something quick, it makes a nice way to do exactly what you’ve done here. Sometimes fast is best. And what a way to steal 10-15 minutes and make something memorable out of it! Thank you, Debi and boy can I second, third, infinity times Margaret’s comment. She said that so beautifully. And it’s so true!💜

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Yes, Debbie, so much inspiration just from taking a walk in the neighbourhood. I love the simplicity of your leaf which looks like it might have been a remnant from last year’s growth. I read your posts and enjoy your art and photography. I am glad to have found you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • hi Louise, thank you very much for your comment, it was lovely! I’m so glad you found the artwork inspiring, and are glad to have discovered you too 🙂 cheers, Debi


  7. Great image. I have often been stopped dead in my tracks by a stunningly beautiful autumn leaf in my path. I pick these up often to paint but find they are just too beautiful on their own, I cannot ‘add any value’. But you have done something very creative and different with it. Very inspiring!

    Liked by 1 person

    • wonderful comment, thank you! I’m happy you enjoyed it and it was inspiring; It certainly was a departure, from my typical art approach! But, every so often, I do pick up the pen….. lol


    • thank you for stopping in and having a look! micron pens are quite handy…. then again, with me, I’ll even use skewers with ink! lol Thanks so much for your comment 🙂 cheers, Debi


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