Ellie Irons is an artist who makes colorful paintings. She gets her paint from an unusual place: weeds! Weeds are wild plants that often grow where they’re not wanted, like vacant lots in cities.

To make her paint, Irons grinds up leaves, berries, and flowers from the plants she collects. She combines their bright pigments with other material, such as tree sap. That helps to thicken the paint.

Some weeds can harm other plants by using up resources. But in cities, weeds can provide homes and food for insects and birds. Irons hopes her art can help people appreciate all kinds of plants. “It’s a chance to see plants as lively beings,” she says.