View Full Version : first oil pastel

Alachua Artist
10-31-2003, 08:27 AM
Hi all;
I was given a box of oil pastels as a gift. I've worked in soft pastel for a long time, but have never tried the oils. These are fun!

This painting is of the dry bed of the Santa Fe River along Canyon Road. It's 9"x12" on tan Strathmore pastel paper. My question is: how do I achieve finer detail in the foreground with these sticks? They are so buttery that having a hard edge just doesn't happen (I don't remember the brand). Can they be combined with pastel pencils?

Also, the leaves need some refinement, but I'm not sure what or how.

Please comment freely.

10-31-2003, 08:30 AM
well you certainly have used them to great effect...... lovely piece..... well done

10-31-2003, 10:21 AM
love your first oil painting

10-31-2003, 11:48 AM
Very good work......wouldn't believe this was your first time using them.... love the colours !...well done. :)

10-31-2003, 12:15 PM
Hi....wecome to the pastel forum and what a great first OP!!! Yes, you can use colored pencils or pastel pencils for details with OPs...I prefer the first. You can also use a tool, with an edge to lay down details...I've used a rubber cuticle pusher. I love the cool to warm transition, the only problem I see is it is cut in half where the river bed starts under the bridge...I'm not a landscaper but maybe cropping some of the trees and really 'popping' that large rock with details would give it a better composition...really look forward to seeing more of your work...this is lovely!

Alachua Artist
10-31-2003, 02:05 PM
Your comments are all appreciated.

I mentioned working with soft pastels before, but there is a definite transition from soft to oils. I was trying to experiment with a brush and turpentine to make fine lines or blend the colors more. That made a mess.

I will take your advise and find some tools to help with the lines and details. If I use colored pencils, does that change this to a multi-media painting? (such technicalities)

Are there oil pastel pencils? Thanks for all your help and encouragement!

10-31-2003, 02:59 PM
Technically, I guess it would be mixed media, but I have never considered it as such as it's just for a few tiny details...a lot of soft pastels use a watercolor base and not called mixed media either....I haven't seen any oil pastel pencils. If you are determined for it to be pure OP, I have done some with pretty tight details using the tool and with the Holbeins (my favorite) I can shave off a new edge and get real tiny details and use no tools at all. But I still might use a prismacolor to get a tiny lower eyelash or something...I hope you are going to post more OPs..I also did soft before I had trouble with the dust. And you'll find excellent results using the better quality OPs too...I prefer the Holbeins as they come in a range of 5 shades for each color and are less smeary and well, oily. A lot closer to soft pastels in application. Have you checked out the oil pastel sticky and all the OP links in the pastel library??? Tons of good info there...

Marc Sabatella
10-31-2003, 05:41 PM
Personally, seeing the great results, I wouldn't *want* any more detail on this painting. But in future paintings, you might experiment with different surfaces, which will take the oil pastel in different ways - the texture of the Strathmore pastel paper seems to fight attempts at creating detail. You'll never get as detailed as you can wtih hard pastels and pastel pencils, if that's your thing, but you can do better than Strathmore. My favorite is plain white acid-free museum board, although part of the reasdon I like it is that small paintings like this can be easily framed with no mat (just a spacer between the painting and the glass).

10-31-2003, 07:18 PM
That's a very nice first oil pastel!
I have kind of abandoned fine lines since I started o.p.s. If I really need one- say, for barbed wire- I use colored pencil, just a little. Color shapers help too.
Looking forward to seeing more oil pastels from you!:)
(another) Wendy

10-31-2003, 10:35 PM
Originally posted by Dark_Shades
well you certainly have used them to great effect...... lovely piece..... well done