View Full Version : First Pastel Portrait

08-30-2013, 02:47 PM
Hi :wave:

I'm new to pastels and got them for painting landscapes but I had a hard time with my soft pastels. So I tried a portrait with pastel pencils and it turned out "ok".
I used Colourfix Paper and it gets dusty when using more than two layers. I like to blend the pastels.
So how is the general process when drawing a portrait with pastel pencils? Do you draw the dark shades first and then go lighter? I have two books and in each one it's done different.
I'm used to drawing with graphite pencils so it was hard to not get so many details I would get with them.


Sarah Dowson
08-30-2013, 07:14 PM
For some great tuition with pastel pencil, may I suggest you pay a visit to Colin Bradley's Art page. All of his tutorials are in pastel pencils. You have to join the sight to view the full length video's but there are some snippets there you can view for free which will help you a great deal. He also has a lot on you tube.
Here is a link: http://www.colinbradleyart.co.uk/

08-31-2013, 12:36 PM
Nice job for your first portrait with pastel! I rarely use pencils, mostly just pastel sticks, so I don't really know what to say in regard to strictly pencils. When I use sticks, I block in dark, light, and mid value shapes first, and proceed from there

08-31-2013, 01:59 PM
Very nice! The nice thing about pastels is that they can be used in many different ways. Lights over darks, darks over lights...it's all good! My guess is that pencil pencils do not have the ability to cover as well as the softer pastel sticks. So, I would probably tend to start light and then blend in darker. But there need not be any sort of "method".


08-31-2013, 02:01 PM
Very nice! Especially like the highlights on the hair and eyes!

08-31-2013, 03:47 PM
A good first portrait in pastel!
I am surprised you cannot get more than 2 layers on colourfix with pastel pencil? A light touch is best and you should be able to get many layers. Afterall, pencils are generally harder than the pastel sticks.
Maybe try layering instead of blending. You may also get a better sense of depth that way.
Keep going! The transition from graphite to pastel will take a while!

09-01-2013, 10:53 AM
Hi you all!

Thank you very much for your comments and helpful tips!!

Colin Bradley is a great artist and I will look at his videos!