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Friday, April 17, 2009

Peepal leaf

History of Peepal Tree

Peepal tree also known as pipal,peepul tree are widely found in India.It is considered sacred by both Hindus and Buddhists. More than 2000 Years ago, Siddhartha Gautama, the founder of Buddhism, sat under a tree of Peepal Leaves when he became enlightened. Ever since then, the peepal has been also known as Bodhi tree.
Peepal leaves have been used for writing in India even before the invention of paper

Painting on Peepal leaf

(art piece with Potrait theme)
(art piece with God/Goddess theme)

(art piece with Scenary theme)

Painting on Peepal leaf is a delicate work of art originated in the southern India (Kerala). Its done on dry Peepal leaves. Its one of the oldest form of art, which shows the ingeniousness & patience of the artists. This art form originated because the leaves of the peepal tree have a beautiful shape as they taper to a needle point. Though now only a few artists are left who practice this leaf art.
Peepal Leaf Painting are great for making cards, wall decoration, bookmark, gifts. etc.

Themes of painting
Typically themes are painted on peepal leaves are:
• Religious Indian figures
• Animals
• Scenery
• But we can experiment with modern an abstract art also .

Method of Painting on peepal leaf
Material required
Its very inexpensive all you need is:
• Peepal Leaves
• Oil paints
• Sheet for the background

The method is divided into 2 process
1. Drying the leaves
2. Painting on leaves

1.For drying Peepal leaves

(Dry Peepal leaf )

Place a few leaves in a bowl full of water for15 days or a month . But do remember to check it once every few days to see the condition of the leaves. The purpose of soaking the leaves is to remove the outer layer of the leaves. After being in water for long, the leaves get a film over them, which you need to clean by washing it off or use a brush periodically. And do remember to change the water with a fresh one periodically Once the outer skin is lost, it leaves behind a beautiful bony structure, usually off-white in color.
Now dry it for a day & you got a leaf to paint on.

For Painting the leaves

Use oil paints to paint your favourite design on the peepal leaves
Put a coloured sheet for background. Use a colour that will enhance the effect of the painting. The background is usally kept because Peepal leaves are very fragile and may rupture.

Tips and tricks

• The most important tip is to be patient while drying peepal leaves and handle them delicately
• You can also paint the peepal leaf in two colours . To give it a different half and half look
• Use Golden colour to make a border. You can also use golden colour for highlighting or making jewelry
• Add glitter to enhance the look of your painting
Mix and match various mediums. For eg. You can make Ganeshji of clay and stick on the peepal leaves
• If Painting is not your cup of tree then dip these dry peepal leaves in bright , vibrant water colours and then dry it. It will give beautiful look
• Many wedding cards are decorated with dry peepal leaf .You can also use these
• Cover with transparent sheet to protect your work.

Similar to the above lotus leaves even peepal leaves can be painted with vibrant colours
So just start just start and make your own creative piece of art on peepal leaf.