Experimenting with Egg Tempera Paint

In the spirit of the season, you and your family may be coloring eggs, but have you ever tried painting with them? Egg tempera paint is said to have dated back to prehistoric times. It is the process of "tempering" or mixing ingredients to a specific consistency. Egg tempera paint is made by combining egg yolks, which act as a binder, with colored powdered pigments in approximately equal amounts.

Make Your Own Egg Tempera Paint
To make your own homemade egg tempera paint, you can separate an egg yolk from the white, dry it off gently with an absorbent towel, and mix the yolk liquid with a little distilled water to create a creamy consistency. Add powdered pigment, and your paint is ready to use.

Some other recipes include adding egg yolk with linseed oil along with powdered pigments to allow the paint to be applied with a little smoother texture. Although, keep in mind, it will leave a certain sheen on your painting after the paint is dry.

Why Use Egg Tempera Paint?
The benefits of using egg tempera paint over watercolors are that it dries very quickly and becomes water resistant. This means you can apply different color washes on top of each other with them mixing and getting muddy. Be careful not to apply egg tempera paint too thickly though, because as it dries, it can tend to crack.

Why not let the kids color the outside of eggs this Spring while you try experimenting with your own homemade egg tempera paint.