View Full Version : Appointment with Caran d'Ache!!!

10-25-2004, 08:12 AM
As I live 15 minutes from Caran d'Ache Headquarters, I proposed to meet them in the name of OPS on Friday and they positivelly answered already today for a meeting on friday 29th!

Now I'm feeling nervous regarding what to say, ask, not say...

So I need your HELP! And my aim is to represent you...

Is it easy to find Caran d'Ache pastels where you leave? Also open stock?

They published an interresting brochure (including ligthfastness 100h) (http://www.carandache.ch/_img/PDF_Fineart/en_spa/Depl_tech%20NEOPAS.pdf) on their website: http://www.carandache.ch/products/fineart/detail.lbl?g=Artist&p=Neopastel.

As they plan a gallery on the website I can ask about opening date and future contests.

You know what... I'm happy! :music: :music:


Kathryn Wilson
10-25-2004, 08:14 AM
Is it easy to find Caran d'Ache pastels where you leave? Also open stock?

Good luck with your meeting Anney - I am sure you will do a great job!

I sure wish I could get Caran d'Ache easier here - I either have to order it online or find it on Ebay.

10-25-2004, 08:42 AM
Way to go, Anney! Great initiative :cool: Hope you get a tour of the production facilities :clap:

I can find boxes of Neopastel here in Ireland (Dublin), and also some open stock, although in the shop I go to it is a bit of hit and miss, not always well stocked up (same with Sennelier). No problems with stocks when in Belgium.

Have fun!


10-25-2004, 11:07 AM
Even though I live near a large city (Houston, TX) - I always order my art supplies off the Internet. It's easier, the supply is much better and the price is much cheaper. I order my Caran d'Ache from DakotaPastels, open stock. I really like them and they work very well with the Sennelier's. Thanks for doing this for us!!! :wave: :clap: :wave: I know you'll do a great job!

10-25-2004, 11:58 AM
...And don't forget to take a camera! :D

...And we're expecting a trip report here or at the OPS website! :p

10-25-2004, 05:01 PM
You rock Anney. :)

Please let them know about The Pastel Journal's editorial response. Especially that it published statements that oil pastels are really crayons with little to no oil in use and that they're not a fine art medium.

Find out CD's official position - do they agree with the PJ's editorial that OPs are not fine art materials and use less-than-archival ingredients and pigments. What do they think about their product being characterized as a crayon? Is there any truth to that statement by the PJ editor? Do they agree with the Winsor & Newton Technical Director of Education's statements about OPs in general - and in particular regarding their own OPs?

Find out if oil is used in the formula. Find out if the pigments used are lightfast - i.e. what scale are they using to judge "lightfast". See if you can get a tour of the facilities and actually see neopastels being made.

Would they consider submitting to the OPS website an article and photos describing/showing the OP manufacturing process? Assuming CD's neopastels are fine art grade materials and pigments would they also consider submitting a letter to the PJ clearing up the confusion about OPs?

While you're at it could you ask the same questions regarding their water-soluble Neoart wax pastels (which I confess I'm a big fan of)?

p.s if it helps maybe you can print out this thread with everyone's questions so it'll help jog your memory in the midst of the fun of visiting CD. ok, well maybe you wouldn't get excited. I know I would be but maybe that's just me.

10-25-2004, 06:22 PM
Anney...how wonderful! And so great to do this on behalf of the OPS...it shows that our members ARE the OPS and care enough to get in there and make things happen. :clap:
I think you've gotten some good advice here. I have done some newspaper interest articles and have found some things that work quite well. First is to be sure and be accurate with any quotes. I used a small recording device, with permission, and took notes too. Second is to ask simple questions and let them talk, I'm sure they will volunteer a lot. Then little questions regarding what they've just said clarifies things. It's good to ask if they want to give a prepared statement on the PJ issue and more interesting if they are allowed to come to their own conclusions, rather than leading them with particular questions.
Would love to see something about their manufacturing processes, that's a great thought.
I can't get open stock of any of the major brands where I live, but they are easy to get here in the US, I don't order online, but do use them to make phone transactions.
One question, if the opportunity comes up, that I would like to know from ALL the mfgs...is are they open to new colors??? I think we all have a couple colors we'd love to have that no one seems to have. :)
Mainly, just have fun and enjoy the experience...it's a wonderful opportunity to see something many of us can't, so we will vicariously experience it with you. I'm sure you will be a wonderful representative for the OPS :)
If you like, the staff at OPS usually all work together on editing...mostly spelling and phrasing until we all feel it looks good, so feel free to ask for help in that regards if needed too.
Thank you from all of us...I'm just so excited for you to have this experience and as a bonus everyone will benefit, including Caran d'Ache :)

10-26-2004, 05:02 AM
Thanks all for the inputs!

Find out if oil is used in the formula. Find out if the pigments used are lightfast - i.e. what scale are they using to judge "lightfast". See if you can get a tour of the facilities and actually see neopastels being made.

What they measure in Ligthfasness 100h. On a new product of them "Museum" (professional quality watercolour leads), they measure Ligthfastness 150h (ranking from *** to *****), I have no idea what the standard is ???

If you like, the staff at OPS usually all work together on editing...mostly spelling and phrasing until we all feel it looks good, so feel free to ask for help in that regards if needed too.

Sure I will!

Additionnal question about packaging. As Caran d'Ache is also a luxury brand, they have wooden boxes (96 ops, and a 15 ops set). A lot of people like their tinboxes too. I've only bougth CdA open stock and I store them in a Sennelier soft pastel box with foam, so I welcome feedback on CdA packaging (and report on any problems, I experienced some strange interaction between sennelier ops and the plastic packaging). So:
- Do you like CdA tinboxes?
- Would you consider buying the wooden bow? Have you heard about it?
- Any problem to report regarding packaging?


10-26-2004, 05:54 AM
Sounds exciting Anne! Please mention if you can that here in Ukraine we have no distribution of CDA at all! Some think here that Faber Castel's are the best supplies available! What a joke! Can't wait to know how it went.

Just noticed your new posting. Tin boxes are ideal for me.

Pat Isaac
10-26-2004, 08:41 AM
Wow, Anney. Good for you. All the advice you have received so far is great. I can get Caran D'ache here and in open stock.
A friend of mine had that experience with Senneleir and plastic. The plastic melted around her OPs. When I get new OPs I take them out of the packaging and put them in the containers I have for them.
I hope they will give you a tour.

Good luck, you''l be fine. It's exciting. :D :D


10-26-2004, 08:44 AM
I've just checked the product review and there is no review for Caran d'Ache. Just follow the link:



10-28-2004, 12:57 PM
I think your time zone is about 8 hours later than mine, so figured you must be getting very excited by now and deciding your wardrobe :D I know you'll do a great job...just relax and enjoy the experience! We all are excited for you and to see what you find out :clap:

10-28-2004, 03:14 PM
Good luck, Anne! I know you'll do well, and I hope you enjoy yourself. We'll all be waiting eagerly to hear how it went.

10-29-2004, 06:22 AM
I met with the Marketing "Fine Arts Product Manager" and the Research and Development Manager, and I could see the manufacturing, but they were not producing Neopastel this morning, but I saw Neocolor rigth from the machine!

The position on the Pastel Journal/W&N statement is rather to enhance the communication on oil pastels.

I have some work now on wrinting, but you'll probably not hear about me before tuesday (long week-end here).

Thanks all!


Pat Isaac
10-29-2004, 09:08 AM
Thanks, Anne. It sounds like a fruitful trip. Have a good weekend......Pat

10-29-2004, 10:12 AM
Enhancing the communication is good, hope they saw that that is the whole idea of the OPS :wink2: ...can't wait to hear all about it! Have a nice long weekend Anne!

11-01-2004, 07:22 PM
Wow - what a great experience Anne.
Look forward to hearing more about it.


11-08-2004, 09:58 AM

I've just sent an article proposal for next Oil spil to [email protected]

Thanks for your support and encouragments,


11-08-2004, 12:14 PM
thanks so much!! Looking forward to seeing your article :)

11-11-2004, 10:02 AM
I was so angry :mad: about the Editor's note in the most recent edition of "The Pastel Journal" in which they claimed that oil pastel is nothing more than a version of a crayon and is not a fine art medium. How is one suppose to help promote the medium and encourage others to try it with such statements being made?

I do hope that OPS will be able to counter their editorial or convince the manufacturers to do so.

11-11-2004, 10:31 AM
I just saw this come up, so I thought I'd say congratulations on the great opportunity to visit Caran d'Ache's plant.

Caran d'Ache was probably the first product I used as I graduated into adulthood and left Crayola behind. :evil: CdA is also the mfgr I recommend to anyone I coach on incorporating colour into their journal.

FYI, more mixed media artists seem to be using oil pastels in their work, especially journal/artist book artists, but the popular brand appears to be Portfolio. However, they often do not know how to incorpate it smoothly.

Neither are easy to find in NYC.

Any tips I can share in my upcoming Spring 'zine issue from you guys to encourage the use of OP would be included, appreciated and credit always given to sources.

Thanks and again cheers :clap: :clap: :clap: for success!

11-12-2004, 07:36 AM

Portfolio Series oil pastel are water soluble whereas Neopastel aren't (but Caran d'Ache also has watersoluble kind called NeoArt aquarelle).

As a general remark, most people consider that the only oil pastel brands for artist are: Sennelier, Sakura Specialist, Holbein and Caran d'Ache. Pigments used are professionnal, and there are much more colors available (96 for CdA Neopastel, 60 for Neoart, 120 for Sennelier) and you can buy them open stock (online from US: dickblick or dakotapastels).

CdA point of sales can be found on their website: http://www.carandache.ch/cda/contacts/worldwide.lbl?&lang=en


11-12-2004, 07:55 AM
Thanks for pointing up and out this huge distinction between OPs. Frankly, I failed to register the distinction when writing.

I suppose it is for its water solubility that book artists/mixed media artists might prefer the Portfolios, but they are beginning to spread their wings as OPs are becoming more available and more highly regarded.

I do have both Caran d'Arche OPs near my elbow :)

11-22-2004, 03:42 PM
How Exciting. I am glad that you had the wonderful experience of going. And thank you for representing us!

11-24-2004, 08:17 AM
As a former newspaper writer/reporter, my first and most important advice is -- Don't be so nervous. They're just people too. They have their area of expertise; you have yours. Most of the time industry people enjoy talking about and "selling" their product. Ask some very open-ended questions and let them go. It's usually hard to get them to shut up so you can ask another question.

Using a microcassette recorder is a good idea if you have one. Otherwise, taking fast and accurate notes is a skill learned only through lots of experience.

Good luck. We'll all be waiting for your report. I especially love CdA's. I stumbled across a 24-pc set at a craft store of all places and love them.


11-24-2004, 08:18 AM
Hey, look at that! I fnally graduated from "New Member" to "Member."



12-02-2004, 03:32 PM
:clap: Just read your account of the visit in this months Oil Spill! Great stuff :cool:

Well done, anney!!! :clap:


12-02-2004, 09:00 PM
Steven is right, Anne...thank you so much for your report! :clap: