Whole egg tempera recipe

The traditional recipe for egg tempera paints usually includes egg yolk as a binding agent to mix with pigments. There are alternative recipes, however, that are slower to dry and are nearer to the character of oil paints. One of these is to use a whole egg (both egg yolk and egg white) and a mixture of linseed oil and turpentine.

When adding the whole egg recipe to pigment, grind the pigment directly with the emulsion medium (see grinding pigments). You can then start painting.

What follows is a brief overview of a whole egg recipe to use for egg tempera. For a more detailed summary of egg tempera, I recommend the excellent book, The Artist’s Handbook, by Ray Smith available from Amazon.

You will need:

  • a fresh egg
  • purified (distilled water)
  • linseed oil
  • genuine turpentine
  • white vinegar

Whole egg tempera recipe, step-by-step

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