Garden Variety

The life-sized painted leaves of Deb Poirier are masterful illusions

It's a masterful illusion

By: Susan Laughlin

These garden leaves are local but not fresh.

Dale Poirier of East Kingston painstakingly reproduces the supple life-sized leaves she has plucked from a nearby community garden.

Taking the fresh leaf, she molds beach sand around it, carefully making sure that every vein and ripple has made an impression.

After slowly removing the actual leaf, she presses in a concrete and polymer mixture that takes on the form left in the sand.

The mixture air-dries and finally Poirier completes the reproduction by painting the leaves with acrylic – building up the surface with many paint layers for an extremely realistic look.

Her work is available at the Hanover League of New Hampshire Craftsmen shop and more items may be viewed on her website.

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