View Full Version : pastel on velour or suede

04-18-2008, 03:26 AM
Hi all, i'm new to this site. I think it's a great initiative.
Perhaps you can give me feedback on this:
Has anybody used pastels on velour or suede? Are there any tips you can give me on working with these materials. It's definately a different feel to working on paper or board.
Any input would be greatly appreciated.



04-18-2008, 09:41 AM
If you will go to the blue box at the top of the threads, select the "Search this forum" and type either suede or velour, there are numerous references to the pros and cons of using either one. I personally prefer to use suede for at least some types of works.

Hope this helps and Welcome to the forum.


04-18-2008, 02:27 PM
Hi Anette
Like John said, a lot of info on here re these surfaces, but one thing I found is you cannot erase really, but you can cover over almost everything , and reworking is very easy. I use suede a lot as I get bulk scrap from my framer.

04-21-2008, 09:13 PM
I've used the velour and like it for animals - it gives you a very soft look. The Gauralt pastels seem to work well on the surface. You can't use many layers.

12-18-2008, 01:03 AM
Thanks a lot to all.


12-20-2008, 01:09 AM
Hi Annette! I started out with a bit of this and that, trying sanded papers, velour and suede. There's just something about that suede that I love most of all.

It is such a personal choice, just like brands of pastels. I would encourage you to try both and see which you fall in love with!

Lisa M
12-20-2008, 11:52 AM
Welcome to the forum! You might look into the book Painting Animals That Touch the Heart by Lesley Harrison; she's a well-known professional artist who always (I believe) uses velour. Her website may also reveal more, though I haven't looked at it for awhile. A quick online search reveals around $45 for the cheapest copy, but you could probably find it cheaper with a little more searching. I have the book, though probably wouldn't pay quite that much for it:eek: . You can find just as much useful info searching around this forum. One thing you'll find is that the hardest of the soft pastels don't work too well on velour; save those for the sanded-surface papers.

Good luck, and happy painting!

12-21-2008, 12:33 AM
I have done some on velour none on suede, the velour does not lend itself to detail, but has a soft, fuzzy appearance to the pastel work on it. That is why it works so well for animals and fur. As I am a detail person, I did not really like it. I have seen Bob Ichter's work in the Belleza Gallery in Bisbee, Arizona and in Sedona, he works on suede and uses some marveloous color schemes...check him out.

12-21-2008, 10:42 AM
I find the softer pastels, like Derwent, are better on Velour, and Pastelmat ( I don't think it is available in the States ) by Clairfontaine, is firmer for details.
Just my observations.


12-21-2008, 02:34 PM
I've used velour mostly for animals too, and for working large. It's wonderful for getting soft shading with softer pastels. I was using Grumbachers when I first discovered it and did full board big cats on it -- they went fast. I didn't need to do much layering because it went on so strong, but found that in some areas I was doing several layers for details and it held more than regular paper.

So, it's soft, less detail so it's better to work large, wonderful for gradual soft gradients and feathering fur and feather strokes, holds more layers than paper and less than sanded paper.

I've had only one problem with it and that's technical to doing ATCs (artist trading cards) and ACEOs (Art Cards Editions & Originals, same thing but you can sell them as well as swap them). ACEOs and ATCs are often mailed and kept in Top Loaders, clear archival PVC plastic card holders that go into albums. These are great for protecting trading card sized art in the regular mails. Velour needed the Extra Thick Card ones. Unfortunately, every one of the velour board ones I did and sent blurred horribly from the mail. They survive well enough in my album but can't be mailed in top loaders, while ATCs on sanded paper do arrive without blurring.

So, be extra careful in handling pastels on velour. I have not tried shipping one with glassine and a foam board stiffener like I do larger artworks, but I've stopped using velour for ACEOs at all even if I can get beautiful effects with it. I'll stick to the larger pieces that can be shipped the other way -- and I still need to mail one to someone to test how it survives shipping.

Pastels on velour don't need fixative, it's a bit pointless to put fixative on them. This may have something to do with their fragility and the softness of the surface rubbing against the top loader inside the envelope. So use sanded paper if you're doing ATCs.

12-21-2008, 07:02 PM
:clap: suede mat board is gret stuff. No dust, bright color, and easy to use. You can sharpen the Nupastels to get fine lines, and rich color on the suede. Its amazing how well the Nupastel works on it. All the softer patels, too , of course, but for hair, or lines, or small things, sharpen a Nu pastel and try it. You can also layer quite a bit on the suede. It really is good stuff for some subjects. Get some small cuts from your framer, or even Micheals, or a Ben Franklins Store, and try it. A full sheet is quite large, and costs $40 plus---It is easy to cut into sizes. Experimentation is the way to learn about these differnt surfaces, and its fun, too

12-28-2008, 02:52 PM
Thanks for all the replies!