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there's even evidence that our stone age brethren would walk 25 kilometers (more than 15 miles) to find ochre with different hues. and the "paints" made with the materials left behind by our ancient ancestors could have been used to colorize and decorate just about anything, from hair and skin, to everyday items from a favorite spear to a favorite clay pot.
scientists think that we started using ochre as long ago as 164,000 years ago, but virtually all that we colored is lost. but according to the smithsonian "the world’s very first picture" is a cave painting on the island of sulawesi, in indonesia, and it's believed to be at least 35,400 years old, even older than the lascaux cave paintings in france.
it's a pretty amazing thing when you think about it: just about everywhere on the globe, we've been "communicating with color" for millennia. so finding the perfect color for your outfit or your home isn't new – using color to express who you are, or to communicate something important is very deeply embedded in the human experience.
feeling inspired? feeling like finger painting with ochre is just what you need to unwind? here's a link on how to make ochre paint. now go paint the town ochre.
and here's the smithsonian article the oldest cave paintings. and a wikipedia page on ochre.
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