View Full Version : First try-pastels
06-14-2006, 01:53 PM
These are my first two i worked with the pastels i bought yesterday...I know the general shape of the faces suck but thats what im trying to improve generally...I only have a small range of colors in my pastel palette because the big set was destroyed in the shop...
Can i have some feedback on these?
06-15-2006, 12:56 AM
I've been working with pastels for years and it's one of my favorite mediums but it can have a difficult learning curve. Here's a couple of thoughts for you that might make it a little smoother. If you are at all serious about learning pastels, get as big of a palette as possible. Do not skip on your range of pastel colors, it will make everything much more difficult. I suggest Rembrandt soft pastels, they're professional level, "buttery" texture and rich colors. Use NuPastel if you want to work with hard pastels. Don't bother with the student or academic pastels, they're all chalk, charcoal and filler.
Work on textured paper such as Canson. Each side has a different texture, use the smoother side. The other side has a honeycomb pattern as seen in your pics below. Unless you're really good or have a definitive reason to use the honeycomb side, use the smoother side. Though pastels share traits with graphite drawing one of the differences is that it is best to work on colored paper and not white. "Moonstone" is an excellent all-purpose color by Canson.
Pastels are all about layers. Lots of layers. Don't expect or necassarily try to get the exact color you want in one pass. Look at a color and break it down into the pure individual colors that make it up then make layer each pure color on top of each color. Note: each layer is not opaque but selectively transparent. For example, if the skin is soft violet, put a layer of rose red for skin warmth, layer soft blue violet for shadow coolness, layer orange as it transitions into the lit area ect.
Remember this: pastel paintings go through the "ugly stage." It is the point at which there isn't enough layers of colors to give any real depth, the image is incongruent with pieces here or there finished and you keep working on it but it just "isn't working." Keep working on it. This happens and you just have to push through it.
Last thoughts: think of the usage of pastels more as brushstrokes than pencil strokes | Don't try and use it like a pencil | study the work of masters and develop form before detail.
I hope this helps and be sure to post some pieces later on, -thePoet
06-15-2006, 01:09 AM
Here's a close-up of a portrait that might help to explain what I meant about looking at a color and breaking it down into it's purest individuals colors then layering those over each other. Also, about not using pastels as a line tool but a tone/color tool.
06-15-2006, 04:54 PM
Thanks a lot for your reply...
06-15-2006, 04:54 PM
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