South West Art


Pastels feed

Perhaps one of the most appealing qualities of this painting with Pastels, is the direct contact between the artist and the surface. As pastels are a dry medium, paintings can be created swiftly and without the need for water, brushes or other equipment.

Soft Pastels are finely ground pigments bound together and formed into sticks of pure colour. They are the most lightfast of all the mediums.  One of the oldest forms of painting mediums, Soft Pastels were used by the old masters and those paintings are as fresh today as the day they were painted.

Oil Pastels are used less often in Fine Art and provide a  very different alternative to the dry, "chalky" soft pastels. They are oil based and can be used with solvents to create a very different effect. Generally available in a much reduced range of colours compared to soft pastels. They are often used in schools and colleges, as they are not made with pure pigments and do not create the dust usually associated with pastels.

Hard Pastels are usually used for sketching and underpainting and are available mainly in the earth tones.

Hints & Tips

Zest It and Oil Pastels

Add Zest It, low odour turpentine substitute, to oil pastels and discover a whole new painting medium.

Carry your water in your brush!

No need to take lots of equipment out with you - take an Aquash brush and your watercolour pencils and sketch on the move.