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  • Writer's pictureAlana Stewart

Painting with the Pantry: Using spice as paint! (Blog + Gallery)

Updated: Aug 27, 2021

Painting with the Pantry was a free Art Therapy facebook live stream event that I facilitated on Saturday the 4th of April in response to the start of covid-19 lockdown measures in Australia and across the world. Click here for facebook video recording to follow along with - (please excuse the awkward beginning, some technical difficulties were experienced with starting. Haha).

My idea was to facilitate an Art Therapy process that was accessible, using easy to gain materials (spices and herbs!). I was inspired by eco-dying, where natural dyes in plants are used in a printmaking or dying process on fabric and paper. Thus, with some googling and searching through my pantry, I found many coloured spices and ingredients that made lovely earthy coloured paint! Also the smells from using spices to paint also added a lovely multi sensory and mindful experience.

During the live stream, some participants were very inventive with their ingredients. Their comments can be seen on the facebook video. 

To do this, all you need to do to replicate this process is find some powdered spices which have a strong pigment, such a turmeric, and other things such as berries and instant coffee. Mix these with a very small amount of water and test how they come out on your page. Add more ingredient or more or less water to get desired transparency or opaqueness. Once dry, you may notice some powder left over on the paper. You can choose to leave this stuck to the page or rub it off.

Also, for parents with young children a taste-friendly spice paint can be made with spices and some added food colouring for more vibrancy. Click here for the youtube tutorial. Please see below for a spice paint text page I have created. On this I have rubbed off the remaining powder once dried to see if it successfully stained the paper. I hope this helps with your ideas! Also see below for a slideshow gallery of the participant art work made who have given permission to share their imagery.

Ingredient ideas


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