Remember to buy the best pastels you can afford!  Buying cheapies will make your work look cheap for sure.  My favorites are "Rembrandt" and "Unison" - both can be found at Dick Blick, which you can order directly from on this site!  

Use disposable gloves when painting with soft pastels, to protect your hands and prevent oils from your hands from touching the painting.  I use torchilons to blend (again, Dick Blick sells those too!).  Blending gives you that soft, luscious look with soft pastels!  But my BIGGEST secret for "to die for" paintings in soft pastels is this:  use VELOUR paper!  I used to buy them from ASW, however they have been discontinued there and now I find them at Dick Blick.  Tough to beat 
Blick's prices - they are SOOOOO low!!

For fine detail work, use pastel pencils, my favorite are "Faber-Castells".  I sharpen them on a regular, electric pencil sharpener to get a fine point for really FINE details!  Btw, velour paper feels like velvet, and when you stroke on soft pastels on it, it truly brings your paintings to life!  I uploaded some examples of my work in soft pastels on the "Gallery" on TAC.  Check out "Boris", my latest.  Notice the softness, you can almost touch his fur and feel his softness, although it's only a portrait!  Again - the secret is VELOUR paper!  Best wishes to all!   

Views: 1148

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Thank you for sharing these pastel tips, Jeni!  Lots of good info here.

I'm curious, do you spray fix your pastels?  I don't, because I find that they tend to dull/alter the colors.  But I've heard that some artists do spray.

I look forward to getting some soft pastels. I have a set of Prismacolor NuPastels, which are "hard" pastels.  They are really nice to work with for tight detail - but I think they are too hard for velour paper.  I imagine that the soft pastels would go really nicely on velour!

Hi Thaneeya!  No, I'd never spray my pastels.  I tried that in the past and hated the way they made my painting look, they literally changed all the colors!  However, I imagine spraying with fixative might be good for some paintings, some people use fixative faithfully.  I'm a fan of Leslie Harrison's work, she also works with pastels on velour paper, her work is phenomenal.  She also doesn't use fixative nor does she blend!  I can't imagine pastels without blending.  Blending for me,  brings my pastels to life.  I've never tried NuPastels, but I was looking forward to getting some for detail work on velour paper.  You don't want the NuPastels for general work, just the finer details, like whiskers, eye highlights, or individual hairs.

I agree with Jenifer, I also like Rembrandt and Unison, and for velour paper are also very good ultra soft pastels (Sennelier), great paper is aslo Pastelmat!!!

About fixative, I use them on Canson paper - it cannot hoĺd too much layers so I must to fix them very carefully - I use Rembrandt fixative and also Lascaux too, but when I use sanded papers or velour or Pastelmat it does not need fixative :o)). For details also use pastel pencils I use Derwent, but sometimes is not easy to sharp them without wasting a lead.



Iveta Autratová said:

I agree with Jenifer, I also like Rembrandt and Unison, and for velour paper are also very good ultra soft pastels (Sennelier), great paper is aslo Pastelmat!!!

About fixative, I use them on Canson paper - it cannot hoĺd too much layers so I must to fix them very carefully - I use Rembrandt fixative and also Lascaux too, but when I use sanded papers or velour or Pastelmat it does not need fixative :o)). For details also use pastel pencils I use Derwent, but sometimes is not easy to sharp them without wasting a lead.

Hi Iveta:

Many,many thanks for your kind compliments!  They're all truly appreciated! I've sort of forgotten how to use Thaneeya's site, simply because I haven't been on for so long!  Had a spat of illnesses in my family (my husband and myself) and for a while, I haven't been on TAC.  Good to hear from you, I'm happy you like my work - but know that I LOVE your work!  Oh my, you are very, very talented with pastels!  I love your zebras!  In a while I will take a closer look at your work, but for now, I think your work is phenomenal!  


Jenifer Nadira Knight said:



Iveta Autratová said:

I agree with Jenifer, I also like Rembrandt and Unison, and for velour paper are also very good ultra soft pastels (Sennelier), great paper is aslo Pastelmat!!!

About fixative, I use them on Canson paper - it cannot hoĺd too much layers so I must to fix them very carefully - I use Rembrandt fixative and also Lascaux too, but when I use sanded papers or velour or Pastelmat it does not need fixative :o)). For details also use pastel pencils I use Derwent, but sometimes is not easy to sharp them without wasting a lead.

Reply to Discussion

RSS

Guidelines

New to the site? Check out our Guide to Getting Started.

Please take a moment to read our Member Guidelines. Thanks!

Need help?

If you need assistance with this site, please visit the Site Help forum where the moderators and/or other members will assist you.

About

The Art Colony is a fun online art community for artists of all abilities working in painting, drawing, mixed media, sculpture and handicrafts! Join us and share your art, ask questions, receive tips, and make new friends!

 

It is 100% FREE to join the Art Colony and always will be!

Cheekyjane

Artist and Owner of The Art Colony                      

The Art Colony is co-run by a fabulous team of enthusiastic moderators:

 

Pat

Stacy

Nick

Members

© 2019   Created by Jane Miles. All Rights Reserved.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Privacy Policy  |  Terms of Service