View Full Version : Very stupid oil pastel questions

09-13-2001, 05:49 AM
I just did my first oil pastel painting a couple of days ago. Well, actually my second. I made one when I was 13 or 14 years old, too... Anyhow, I have a couple of very silly questions.:D

When you put your signature on an oil pastel painting... Do you do that with the oil pastel crayons?? They are so thick and clumpsy - how can I possibly make any letters with them? Or do you use any other medium for the signature? This was the silliest question of mine, and now I feel like a complete idiot.:D :rolleyes: ;)

A couple of more "normal" questions... Do I use fixative on oil pastel paintings? Any good tips for framing? Just the usual passepartout/glass/frame thing? Is it okay that the painting touches the glass? I read somewhere here that when using soft pastel you should somehow separate the painting from the glass. Is it the same with oil pastel?

Anything else an oil pastel newbie should think of?:)
(With all these weird questions, how can I possibly convince everybody that I have been using other mediums for ages and am not a newbie in painting?!:D )

:) Maria

09-13-2001, 04:39 PM
you could use a cocktail stick or use the end of a brush to scribe your name into the pastel drawing/painting

I'm thinking of having a go with pastels, I'm starting from the beginning with a drawing course along with my wife. I'm considering doing a home study course with pastels.

Duncan :)

09-14-2001, 06:50 AM
I don't work in oil pastel myself, so I can't be of much help. As far as fixative, I'm wondering if you could use spray varnish since it's oil pastel..:confused:

There is an Oil Pastel Association headed by a John Elliot; maybe you can write them for some info.

Tony Perrotta
09-17-2001, 06:25 PM
Hi Maria, I am new to all types of painting but I have done a few oil pastels. I sealed mine with regular fixative and it seemed to come out O.K. As for signing it you should be able to use oils with rigger or other small brush. Oh yeah if you work over some of the painting with a brush wet with Turps it blends very nicely, but I guess it depends on the effect you are after.

Regards Tony

09-17-2001, 09:03 PM
Hi Maria,
I did a couple of oil pastels, and think they are a quite different from any pastel that I have used. I heard that the oils don't dry for over a year, so it don't require fixative til dry. I haven't framed any yet, so can't help you there. I think the painting shouldn't touch that glass, so frame like you would the other pastel.
You can use turpentine to speed up the drying process.
Really don't know what else to tell you, so happy painting! :D

09-18-2001, 04:33 PM
Thank y'all!:) :)

Katie Miller
10-03-2001, 06:21 PM
I use oil pastels. I build mine up rather thickly, so I use the tip of a bobby pin with the little plastic roundy ends taken off to scratch my signature into the pastel. For fixative, Sennelier brand makes an oil pastel fixative that i have used. it is in a spray-pump bottle, not an aerosol can , so it is a bit tricky to get it even. practice a lot before you use it on your piece. If it gets too thick, a spotted milky buildup will appear on some parts of the painting. Oil pastels harden a bit, but they never fuly dry like paint does, so they should be float framed, without touching the glass. I also recommend not to use masonite as your support, because it is difficult (and expensive) to find a framing system that will incorporate the 3/4 inch thick board, and be float framed. that was a lesson i learned the hard way! good luck!

Linda Boebinger
10-03-2001, 08:08 PM
You may want to post these questions in the oil painting forum. From my experience and the reading in past threads, oil pastels are treated much more like oil paint than regular pastels in terms of mixing with the traditional thinners, mediums, finishing, etc.

10-05-2001, 06:50 AM

Your questions are excellent and not "stupid". Oil pastel is a different bird and has characteristics different from any other medium. As was mentioned above, contact Oil Pastel Societies and organizations, as well as manufacturers for tips 'n tricks. In addition do a search on the web for the major oil pastel painters and write them directly for advice.

Also invest in a good book on oil pastel for your library and/or take a workshop solely dedicated to oil pastel.