Forest Collage

Use interesting textures and colors of paper and fabric to create a forest collage. Create a pine forest, an autumn forest, a woodland forest, or a rainforest. You can even add animals to make your forest come alive.

Safety Tips

  • Young kids (3 to 8 years) should use child-safe scissors.

Forest Collage craft

Materials

  • All sorts of paper and fabric:
    construction paper, gift wrap paper, textured paper, magazine pages, sand paper, etc.
  • Construction paper
  • Animal cut-outs or print-outs (optional)
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick
  • Poster paint (optional)

Steps

Step 1 Forest Collage 1. Draw a tree with the trunk separate from the treetop, or print out either Template 1 or Template 3 of these printable trees.
Step 2a Forest Collage 2. Cut out the tree template. We will use it to make 3 or more trees for your collage. There are two basic ways you can go about this:

a.) Trace the tree template on all sorts of paper or fabric and cut them out. If you choose to work with only one type of paper, use at least 2 color shades of green for the treetop and 2 shades of brown for the tree trunk.
Step 2b Forest Collage b.) Make more tree print-outs or draw more trees. Cut them out and paint on the trees as you please.

You can achieve texture by sponge painting, dry brush painting, potato stamping, roller brush painting, etc. For the trunk, you can make a bark-like effect by crumpling up the paper before painting on it. You may also deviate from the usual green treetop and make autumn-colored trees.
Step 3 Forest Collage 3. Cut out a paper background large enough to accommodate all your trees. Layout your trees on the background paper, positioning some trees slightly at the back to create some depth. Don't worry about going a little over the edges of your paper background. However, be sure to leave some space on areas where you plan to add other details later (in this case, along the foreground).
Step 4 Forest Collage 4. Glue the trees onto the background, starting with the trees at the back. A special note if you plan to add animals- leave out some areas along the trunk where you can hook on or partially insert an animal. The ideal areas where you can apply glue are circled out in red.
Step 5 Forest Collage 5. Cut out additional details for your forest such as grass, bushes, ferns, or a body of water. You can use a lot of the paper scraps from the previous steps. Note that you can combine smaller paper shapes to create bigger elements, like the plant at the lower right of the photo.
Step 6 Forest Collage 6. Glue the details onto your picture. Again, if you want to add animals, we recommend that you apply glue only at the bottom edge of the pieces.
Step 7 Forest Collage 7. Trim the edges of your picture.
Step 8 Forest Collage 8. You can add animals if you like. Draw your own animals or cut out animals from old magazines. You can also print out these animal sets:

Step 9 Forest Collage 9. Position the animals in your collage. You can hook them on branches or slip them behind tree trunks or grass. Glue or tape them in place, if necessary.

More Ideas

Rainforest Collage This craft can be a terrific project for Earth day or Arbor day. Kids can work together to create a mural version of this forest craft, with each kid contributing or "planting" one tree.
Autumn Forest Collage You can add details before gluing on the trees. Bits and pieces of autumn shades (browns, reds, oranges) of paper can create the effect of a leaf-littered ground.

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