How to Make Ancient Egyptian Paint


Ancient Egyptian paintings were brightly colored and enduring. Found in tombs and on papyrus, they were created from a paint called tempera. Tempera consists of a mixture of natural pigments held together with a binding agent and thinned with water, which helped the paint to stick the surface of the picture. Binding agents were made from egg yolks, egg whites, acacia gum, beeswax or a glue called casein. Casein is easy to prepare at home, making it the perfect base for recreated ancient Egyptian paint.

Things You'll Need

  • Milk
  • Saucepan
  • Vinegar
  • Sieve
  • Bicarbonate of soda
  • Powdered paint
  • Heat the milk gently until just under boiling point.

  • Take the milk off the heat. Stir in 3 tsp. of vinegar to curdle the milk and separate it into curds and whey.

  • Strain the mixture through a sieve. Discard the whey and place the curds in a bowl.

  • Add a 1/4 tsp. of bicarbonate of soda to the curds to create sticky casein. Add powdered paint of choice and thin with water to the required consistency.


  • Photo Credit Medioimages/Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images
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