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Natural Paint

Some of the first recorded paintings were found in Africa and date back around 30,000 years. Early painted works have been found in caves and dwelling areas worldwide, and the art of painting continues as expression and necessity.

Modern paints are obviously vastly different than the cave variety. Store bought paints contain chemical additives and harmful substances that are released into the air in varying quantities, called volatile organic compounds. When you choose a natural mixture you have total quality control and there are no lingering toxins. In addition to being better for your space and the environment, it is cost effective too.

So, if you prefer a cleaner application try an organic recipe. Anything from painting your home or the items in it, to mixing up a painter’s palette can be done with homemade natural paints, and it may be easier than you think. With a few basic ingredients you can make your own natural paint.

Flour paint can be made by mixing and boiling a combination of flour, water, clay and mica fillers and can be used both indoors and out. Milk paint which is made by combining whole milk, water, hydrated lime and non-toxic pigments is also a safer alternative. Additionally, you can use cornstarch, water and a bit of eco-friendly soap flakes in order to form a natural paint base that works well for pictures and on canvases. These recipes may require some testing in order to find the preferred consistency, but all are versatile mixtures which can be used for numerous painting endeavors.

Homemade paint doesn’t mean being stuck with just a plain shade of white, either. If you would like to add color, whether a hint or a scream of it, you can boil nearly any plant material with water and create a variety of natural homemade dyes. Consider using things like seeds, nuts, tree barks, herbs, tea flowers, fruits, brightly colored vegetables and even condiments to achieve your selected color. This is just one of the fun parts; walk around stores, markets and outdoors to select natural things that you can extract hues from.

Place the ingredients in a pan and bring to a boil with a bit of water. Let the mixture simmer on low heat for around thirty minutes, experimenting with adding more coloring materials or water to reach the color you would like. Let cool and you are ready to mix in with your paint, being careful not to add too much at once or it will cause your base to become too watery.

So, if you have any budding artists in residence, are a painter yourself or just want to make over a room, these are alternatives to store bought paints that won’t cause worry when applied or disposed of.

HistoryWorld.net: The History of Painting
EPA.gov: Painting Your Home
MotherEarthNews.com: Make Safe Natural Paint
Cornell.edu : Safe & Sustainable Arts, Recipes for Natural Homemade Dyes and Paints

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