View Full Version : Doing an oil paint along in pastel?

Sarah Rose
07-08-2014, 10:34 PM
There is a free Johannes Vloothuis demo/paint along this Saturday. I signed up for it, but he works in oils. Has anyone here done this in pastel, or is it better to just watch the paint along and then apply what you learn later, since it is a different medium?

07-09-2014, 01:47 AM
Pastels are similar to oils in that you work dark to light. I think you could manage just fine with pastels, keeping in mind that the mixing aspect is quite different. With pastels it's a matter of finding the right color, with oils its a matter of mixing the right color. I would consider giving it a try. It might help to know what you are painting ahead of time, so that you could select a paper. If you are using Canson MT you would want to select an appropriate color, if you are using a sanded surface you might want to tone the paper ahead of time. Knowing the reference photo will help you decide what color of substrate to work on. It would help to be prepared. It's not necessary, but it would make it easier.

07-09-2014, 06:42 AM
Sarah Rose, I would love to view this demo. Where did you find the info? Can you share please?

07-09-2014, 09:21 AM
I am signed up too. I should have thought to share...
TIME: 1:00 to 4:00 PM EST
DATE: Saturday July 12
The scene is from String Lake at the Tetons National Park.
Here is the link to register
(Wait a few moments for a new page to come up after you sign up.
You will receive a 11 x 14 grid drawing as a template when you register).

The previous live paint along classes I have taken with Johannes Vloothuis were broadcast on Livestream. After registering at go to meeting you should receive a link to use for the broadcast along with a photo reference and the grid drawing.

I liked the previous paint alongs I have taken with him; each session he would alternate painting with oil, pastel and watercolor. In past sessions I have seen him use Rembrandt pastels (90 landscape set) along with Sennelier pastels for highlights. Other times Pan pastels, oils or watercolors. His website improvemypaintings.com gives info his oil, watercolor and acrylic palettes. If you plan to use oil you should probably pick up a tube of Grumbacher Underpainting White for mixing your colors. He he uses it so that the paint dries faster and additional layer of paint can be added to finish the painting in the time allotted.

If you are a little experienced and have your sketch done ahead of time you can probably keep up (mostly). It is a learning experience just to watch him paint live in real time because he explains what he is doing and why and you can see the transformation from the sketch to the finished painting all the way through. I have learned quite a bit from his demos and paint alongs that were done in oils and watercolors even though I prefer pastels, much of the information can be transferred to any of the mediums.

Hope to see you all there!

Sarah Rose
07-09-2014, 12:14 PM
There is a reference photo and a sketch provided. Chris, I haven't yet figured out the whole paper color thing. My pastel painter friend prefers to work on black paper, for any subject, and she gets excellent results. Because of that I probably haven't put in the time experimenting with different colored papers. I tend to use a lot of layers and the paper is covered by the time I am done.

I am visiting my painter friend today and will ask her more about the Vloothuis classes, she loves him and has been telling me about him for years. I don't recall if she has done a pastel as a paint along or not.....

07-09-2014, 05:25 PM
Doodler, thanks for the info. There is so much on W C, wow! So you have to register...i was hoping to just lurk. Ill go check put the site. Thank you. This sounds like fun. :-)

Is that pacific time?

07-09-2014, 06:02 PM
Jay, it is eastern time at 1pm - 4pm, pacific at 10am - 1pm. Be prepared it may run longer than 3 hours; it often does. In my opinion, Johannes really wants his student to learn and he will often go on tangents(also useful) and will take the time needed to give the instruction and finish the painting. If you choose to just watch and not paint along, just take some screen shots and capture the painting at various stages and you can do it on your own later.

07-10-2014, 04:56 PM
Thanks Elizabeth. That might work for me...taking screen shots or even photos. I don't paint near my computer. I would love to see the work and do the painting later. Thanks for getting back to me. Good luck. Enjoy the demo.

07-10-2014, 06:17 PM
I've followed along his oil paint alongs in pastel before and with Pan Pastels. It's really easy in Pans, not hard to find the equivalent mixtures. It works with pastels too if you're used to working with pastels and if you've got something that holds a lot of layers for a surface. I usually use sanded paper.

My trick with that is to normally do the sketch on watercolor paper and then wash over it with a grit ground, my favorite is Art Spectrum Multi Media Primer. Also no matter what I'm doing on a paint along, I don't try to do it the same size as his. I work smaller and so finish in the same time.

Cool that he included the line sketch for it. I might do mine freehand though since working smaller I sometimes simplify them.