National Gallery at Home: Apple Gathering

Photo of child's hands drawing a tree
Photo: Joanne DrumCredit

Our Education team are bringing some of their family workshops to you online so that you can get creative at home!

Follow along with these simple steps to create your own picture at home, inspired by Walter Frederick Osborne's (1859-1903) painting Apple Gathering, Quimperlé (1883). 

Osborne, an Irish artist, painted this in 1883 when he was living in Brittany, in north west France. It shows a young girl using a long stick to shake apples from a tree. Behind her, a second person, bent low, picks the ripened fruit already scattered on the ground.

We're going to create a picture of a big apple tree! Let's get started!

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National Gallery at Home

Apple Gathering!



  • A large sheet of paper
  • A brown crayon or oil pastel
  • Green and red paint
  • That’s all! But, you can add other colours if you have them. 


  1. Place your forearm on the sheet of paper, with your fingers spread wide.
  2. Trace the outline of your arm and hand, leaving the fingers unfinished at the ends.
  3. Add more 'branches' by moving your arm and hand to another position and tracing around them again.
  4. Colour in the tree trunk using your brown crayon.
  5. Use your fingertips to make the leaves with your green paint.
  6. If you have them, you can add in other colours to add details and shadow. Then leave your paint to dry.
  7. Once dry, use the paint to add some red apples to the tree. Leave it to dry again.
  8. Why not add a self-portrait beside your apple tree? 
  9. You can also add lots of decoration to the background - we chose to add a heart!


Thank you Ciara Lawlor (age 7) and Fiona Lawlor (model, age 4) for working together on this project!


You can share your creations with us on our online channels using #NationalGalleryIRLAtHome, or email them to us at [email protected] - we'd love to see how you get on! 

This activity, which would normally have taken place in the Maples Group Creative Space, is now brought to you online.

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