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colourhealsenergy
01-04-2008, 01:35 PM
Hi everyone! Are there any guidelines to caring for pastels? Other than 'don't drop them.. :D

Do they dry out if not in the box... will they freeze or melt? Dampness a problem? etc..

I've seen a fair bit on caring for the paintings but what about the pastels? Good ones are costly and I want to protect them.

Thanks in advance!
Michelle

Deborah Secor
01-04-2008, 01:47 PM
Basically pastels are...dirt...nothing hurts dirt much, except you can make mud of it and re-form it into a different shape when dry. It's one of the great strengths of our medium, so don't worry about it too much.

Deborah

colourhealsenergy
01-04-2008, 01:49 PM
Thanks! I'm finding opening and closing boxes to be a pain.. not to mention the walmart bag everything is in.. LOL I'm moving everything to a drawer in the craft box!

Michelle

mrking
01-04-2008, 02:26 PM
Basically pastels are...dirt...nothing hurts dirt much, except you can make mud of it and re-form it into a different shape when dry. It's one of the great strengths of our medium, so don't worry about it too much.

Deborah

hehe, I love that.

If anyone asks me what I paint with I'll tell em "dirt". :clap::clap:

Deborah Secor
01-04-2008, 04:01 PM
Mike, I say that all the time! But then I have to add that ALL paint is made from these same pigments (fancy, expensive dirt), thus all paintings are done in 'dirt' of one kind or another, using some kind of vehicle or binder... Pastels are pigment plus gum tragacanth, thus gummy dirt. Watercolors are watery dirt. Oils are--well, you get it! :lol:

Deborah

WC Lee
01-04-2008, 05:39 PM
hmm guess I can't yell at my kid not to play in the mud anymore, huh Deb?

Snowbound
01-12-2008, 09:12 PM
Oh, man, does that explain a lot! God, I just love getting my hands in dirt-- all that lovely colored dirt.

Dayle Ann

ElsieH
01-14-2008, 12:42 AM
As I'm a kid at heart, I love dirt! What lovely colors it comes in, too!:lol:

One thing that I do that helps care for my pastels is I have a tray of cornmeal (various people use other stuff) and as I use a pastel I put it down in the tray (right in front of my easel). This helps me not hold a bunch of pastels in my hands and also reminds me of what colors I'm using. The cornmeal gently cleans off the pastels. When I'm finished with a painting,
I put the pastels back in their places in my trays. I have a little plastic
food container with a snap tight lid, that I keep cornmeal in, that goes
along with me when I travel or have an outdoor painting day.
If my fingers are starting to get a little too colored from the pastels, I just pick up a little of the cornmeal and rub them...cleaner fingers! :lol:

Jonette
01-14-2008, 06:18 PM
Hi Elsie,
Do you mean the yellow grainy cornmeal that you use to make cornbread? Or is it white cornstarch? This sounds like a good tip, and I want to be sure to buy the right stuff.
Thanks!

Jonette

nvcricket
01-14-2008, 10:40 PM
CORNMEAL: They actually sell yellow cornmeal and white cornmeal. I use the white cornmeal for my pastels, and the yellow cornmeal to cook with for my family. I made cornbread with the white cornmeal once and they just didn't enjoy it as much. So the rest of the box is all mine for my pastels! I have it in a tight sealed container and place 5 or so pastels in it and shake gently, they come out nearly clean as a whistle. I hear some people have a soft rag they use as they are painting and they swipe it gently to clean before placing back in the box.

I love the thought that I paint with dirt! It brings us back to our origins in the caveman days-the original pastel artists! Their work has withstood the test of time!

Carol

Jonette
01-15-2008, 07:43 AM
Thanks, Carol. I've never seen white cornmeal sold here in Holland; I'll have to look for it. Any alternatives?

I also love the thought of painting with dirt, lol!

Cheers,
Jonette

Steff
01-16-2008, 07:22 PM
The guy who introduced me to pastels used rice in very much the same way that Elsie mentioned she uses cornmeal. His pastels were always clean looking. With the finer grain, I would think that cornmeal would work even better.

Steff