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brianc
02-18-2006, 06:54 PM
Finally pulled out those oil pastels I got for Christmas. Sennelier - 24 landscape colors. I can tell there's a lot more to learn about using these. What would have been easy as an oil, turned out to be much harder than I thought with oil pastels. I was surprised that I didn't get the coverage from them I expected... but maybe I'm just too stingey with the pigment. 9x12 on Mi-Teintes blue.

Comments, criticisms, and suggestions welcome. Reference photo, below. I think my values are not as dark nor maybe as light as they should be. Please ignore the shortened height... I did that conciously to better fit the paper. The photo angle is slightly different than the drawing angle, thus the diffference in the ellipse of the top of the vase. You oil pastellers out there, am I using these right?

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/18-Feb-2006/36225-bamboo_web.jpg

Wayne Gaudon
02-18-2006, 07:36 PM
that is one wacky looking vase .. in real life .. in your drawing you missed a ring .. the vase has 3 pieces and you show 2 .. I like the colors and the bamboo looks good.

ColorMyWorld
02-18-2006, 07:59 PM
Brian, there are many techniques that can be used with oil pastels. OPs can be a light sketching medium or a heavy painting medium depending on your preference.
I tend to use them with a heavy-hand so that the outcome is more like an impasto oil painting. Sounds like that is more of what you were looking for. Senneliers are very good for this. They are what I prefer to use.
I think your biggest “mistake” in using oil pastels was being too afraid to use too much of the stick. Look at it this way, you wouldn’t do a complete oil painting with oil paints so thinned out as to be transparent just to save on the amount of paint used.
Also, when you put a bit more pigment down, the Senneliers can blend quite well.
In any case, a nice first try at oil pastels. Looking forward to seeing your next one.

JamieWG
02-18-2006, 10:32 PM
Oh, a lucky bamboo! I just got one recently and have been looking forward to putting it to good use in a still life. Yours is much more interesting than mine with those curved sections. It makes a nice painting subject.

Congratulations on finally breaking out those oil pastels! As an oil painter, one thing you may want to play with is blending them with turpeniod. You can use a Q tip or a brush. You'll find it spreads the color very well to give you an "underpainting" like in oils, and then you can work more over the top. As Ann says, once you get a few layers down, you can get nice blended results. It does take time to build those layers, but the flip side is in the convenience factor. It can take as long or longer to do an oil pastel as it does to do an oil painting, but sometimes it's much easier to pull out the oil pastels than it is to set up a palette and work with wet paint.

I think your choice to shorten the plant was a good one and the greens and shaping of the stems and leaves is well done. Looking forward to seeing your second go!

Jamie

brianc
02-19-2006, 12:21 AM
that is one wacky looking vase .. in real life .. in your drawing you missed a ring .. the vase has 3 pieces and you show 2 .. I like the colors and the bamboo looks good.
Yep, I purposely took out that 3rd ring as a way to shorten the vase. I started sketching and realized I was in trouble for height and dropped a ring. I was most pleased with the stalks of the bamboo, and perhaps it is not coincidence that the pastels are built up the most there. Thanks, Wayne for your encouragement!

Brian, there are many techniques that can be used with oil pastels. OPs can be a light sketching medium or a heavy painting medium depending on your preference.
I tend to use them with a heavy-hand so that the outcome is more like an impasto oil painting. Sounds like that is more of what you were looking for. Senneliers are very good for this. They are what I prefer to use.
I think your biggest “mistake” in using oil pastels was being too afraid to use too much of the stick. Look at it this way, you wouldn’t do a complete oil painting with oil paints so thinned out as to be transparent just to save on the amount of paint used.
Also, when you put a bit more pigment down, the Senneliers can blend quite well.
In any case, a nice first try at oil pastels. Looking forward to seeing your next one.You make a good comparison there about not skimping on the oils. (It's just hard to get over cost of these puppies... Any comment comments on alternate student grade brands that I might consider for learning. I bought Sennelier because artist grade made such a difference in oils and watercolor, so I assumed the same here.) I did notice the difference once I had built up some layers. I felt like was mixing more.

Oh, a lucky bamboo! I just got one recently and have been looking forward to putting it to good use in a still life. Yours is much more interesting than mine with those curved sections. It makes a nice painting subject.

Congratulations on finally breaking out those oil pastels! As an oil painter, one thing you may want to play with is blending them with turpeniod. You can use a Q tip or a brush. You'll find it spreads the color very well to give you an "underpainting" like in oils, and then you can work more over the top. As Ann says, once you get a few layers down, you can get nice blended results. It does take time to build those layers, but the flip side is in the convenience factor. It can take as long or longer to do an oil pastel as it does to do an oil painting, but sometimes it's much easier to pull out the oil pastels than it is to set up a palette and work with wet paint.

I think your choice to shorten the plant was a good one and the greens and shaping of the stems and leaves is well done. Looking forward to seeing your second go!
JamieJamie, that's an interesting idea to use the turps. I'll get out a Q-tip and experiment. Yes, convenience also drove me to get them out. Going on a road trip and the oils had to stay home :-( I can start / stop the pastels more easily. :)

Part of all of this is still experimenting and learning. Gotta get my confidence up with this new medium.

JamieWG
02-19-2006, 06:14 PM
Part of all of this is still experimenting and learning. Gotta get my confidence up with this new medium.

Isn't that what winter is for? :D I love having wintertime to experiment with new mediums and techniques in the studio, and to work with subjects that I don't have time for when I get absorbed in my plein air world the rest of the year!

Jamie

ColorMyWorld
02-19-2006, 06:41 PM
Brian, I am in the middle of comparing brands and grades of oil pastels for an article I'm writing for the Oil Pastel Society newsletter.
I've picked up 2 sets of student OPs I found at local craft stores.
The Loew-Cornell was horrible, very waxy, left crumbles all over the place. But I was surprised by some OPs put out by RoseArt under the name of Thomas Kinkade.
There are 12 sticks in a box for US$6.99 and they were fairly nice. Not as soft as a Sennelier and the colors were somewhat more transparent but overall I was pleasantly surprised.
This shows a photo of the box:
http://roseart.com/shop/kinkade/art.html
And here is where they say the product is sold:
http://roseart.com/shop/kinkade/retailers.html
Maybe a good compromise would be to use something like these RoseArt OPs as a base and put your detail or finish in with the more expensive OPs.

brianc
02-20-2006, 10:17 AM
Brian, I am in the middle of comparing brands and grades of oil pastels for an article I'm writing for the Oil Pastel Society newsletter.
I've picked up 2 sets of student OPs I found at local craft stores.
The Loew-Cornell was horrible, very waxy, left crumbles all over the place. But I was surprised by some OPs put out by RoseArt under the name of Thomas Kinkade.
There are 12 sticks in a box for US$6.99 and they were fairly nice. Not as soft as a Sennelier and the colors were somewhat more transparent but overall I was pleasantly surprised.
This shows a photo of the box:
http://roseart.com/shop/kinkade/art.html
And here is where they say the product is sold:
http://roseart.com/shop/kinkade/retailers.html
Maybe a good compromise would be to use something like these RoseArt OPs as a base and put your detail or finish in with the more expensive OPs.
Ann,

Good suggestion. I'll be interested in all your conclusions. We have some of these retailers in my area, and they often have coupons, which should bring them down within a better range.

Katherine T
02-20-2006, 01:36 PM
Well done for having a go Brian - I think getting to grips with oil pastels is not easy.

I experienced some very similar things with my first oil pastel - except I was trying to use the pigment and not having a whole lot of sucess at getting it to stay on (which reminds me I saw it the other day - maybe I'll post it!)