Pulp Painting Lesson Plan

Instructor: Dana Dance-Schissel

Dana teaches social sciences at the college level and English and psychology at the high school level. She has master's degrees in applied, clinical and community psychology.

Pulp painting is a unique method that adds texture to painting. This lesson plan teaches students how to make pulp paint. An activity gives them the tools to recreate a masterpiece using pulp paint.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this lesson, students will be able to:

  • explain the art of pulp painting
  • list the steps necessary for creating pulp paint
  • reinterpret a classic painting with pulp paint


60 to 90 minutes

Curriculum Standards


Pose and respond to specific questions with elaboration and detail by making comments that contribute to the topic, text, or issue under discussion.


Review the key ideas expressed and demonstrate understanding of multiple perspectives through reflection and paraphrasing.


Follow precisely a multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks.


Integrate quantitative or technical information expressed in words in a text with a version of that information expressed visually (e.g., in a flowchart, diagram, model, graph, or table).


Compare and contrast the information gained from experiments, simulations, video, or multimedia sources with that gained from reading a text on the same topic.


  • Examples of pulp painting
  • Copy paper in assorted colors
  • Water
  • A blender or whisk
  • Plastic bowls
  • A strainer or fine mesh
  • An image of the Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci
  • Heavyweight white drawing paper
  • A sponge
  • Plastic utensils
  • Paint brushes
  • Waxed paper
  • Heavy textbooks


  • Begin by passing the pulp painting examples around the classroom.
    • How would you describe these paintings?
    • How do you think they were created?
  • Explain to the class that the examples represent pulp painting, a method of painting whereby colored pulp is used to create images and designs. Tell the class that pulp can be made from many different fibers.
    • What is paper pulp?
    • How do you think paper pulp is made?
  • Demonstrate the act of making paper pulp for the class by tearing a sheet of colored copy paper into small pieces, placing it in a blender (a bowl and whisk can replace the blender, if necessary), adding water and blending it until it becomes colored pulp.
  • Run the mixture through a strainer to separate the colored pulp from the water and move about the classroom showing the pulp to the students.
  • Tell the class that this paper pulp can be used to create paintings.
    • If you had to name the most famous painting in the world, what would it be?
    • Did any of you say the Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci?
    • What if I told you that you could recreate the Mona Lisa for yourselves using pulp painting?
    • Let's get started.

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