Want to make creations as awesome as this one?


By Jenny J

mineral earthy colours and vegetable dyes

Colours from nature

from nature


Minerals get their colour

  • The presence of an element essential to the mineral composition
  • The presence of a minor chemical impurity
  • Physical defects in the crystal structure
  • The mechanical mixture of very fine impurities
  • The presence of finely-spaced structures in the mineral


For example Iwa-enogu is Japanese paint made from mainly minerals. The particles have a similar coarseness to sand and feature a lusterless matt feeling. The paint itself has no adhesive properties, but by adding glue, it sticks to the medium surface.

Mineral pigments are pigments that are created by combining and heating naturally occurring elements. They include ultramarine and spinel pigments.

What are natural mineral pigments?


and dyeing fabric

Vegetable pigments

In fruits and vegetables almost all colors are caused by just 4 groups, or families, of pigments:

1. Chlorophyll (green) 2. Carotenoids (yellow, red, orange) 3. Flavonoids: anthocyanins + anthoxantins (red, blue, purple) 4. Betalains (red, yellow, purple)

of your fruits and vegetables?

what controls the color


Natural dye

from left to right

  • avocado stones (pink)
  • avocado skins (dusty pink)
  • avocado skins + iron (purple)
  • acorns + iron (brown)
  • pomegranate skins + acorns + iron (dark green)
  • pomegranate skins (yellow)


4. Dye

1. Scour

3. Mordant

2. Make dye

Using Foods

Naturally Dyeing Fabric

Pigments were produced on a larger scale by ancient Egyptian and Chinese cultures.

ancient Egyptians

In the history of art

Natural Pigments and Dyes

  • https://www.instagram.com/p/BoEXjiHBVj1/?utm_source=ig_embed&ig_rid=3474078b-0fd4-4b58-971a-340fa8f7043f
  • https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/how-to-naturally-dye-using-foods
  • https://art-design-glossary.musabi.ac.jp/iwa-enogu-mineral-pigment/
  • https://www.invaluable.com/blog/natural-pigments/
  • https://reynolda.org/visit/calendar/the-versatility-of-natural-dyes/
  • https://www.treehugger.com/natural-dyes-food-scraps-5193947
  • https://food52.com/blog/14982-the-art-of-natural-dyeing-6-colors-to-start-with
  • https://foodcrumbles.com/colours-in-fruits-vegetables/
  • https://www.cookinglight.com/eating-smart/nutrition-101/how-color-affects-vegetable-nutrition#:~:text=The%20colors%20of%20produce%20come,and%20fiber%20of%20the%20food.
  • https://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-images-assorted-fresh-vegetables-greens-white-background-isolated-image31640599