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Heart Of Darkness
03-31-2010, 04:17 AM
Hi everyone :wave:

My partner is going to be spending his work bonus on art stuff for me in a few weeks time and I plan on buying pastel pencils with some of it. (I can't decide which brand to buy though :rolleyes:).

When I draw eyes with graphite pencils I erase the rough shape of the catch lights and then shade in around it until I get the effect I need.

I'm guessing the principle is different with pastel pencils. Do you use a white pencil over the top of whatever colour you use for the eye, or do you leave the area of the catch lights blank and work around it? I don't know if erasers are available for pastel pencils, but if there are, does the same method I use for graphite drawings apply? :confused:

Sorry to bombard you with all this :o

*Deirdre*
03-31-2010, 04:55 AM
Hi Lea....The way I do them is to erase ( with my trusty Sakura Electric eraser) before adding the spot in white....but if there are lighter reflections ( not brightest white) in addition - I just put them on top of what's already there.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/33616-anitam4.gif
I use a General's Charcoal White specifically for the catchlight...and have been known to lightly wet the tip of the pencil before applying my 1 spot! Makes sure it stays! But you can carefully leave the catchlight area bare if you haven't an eraser.
My favourite pastel pencils are CarbOthello's which were recommended to me by Dianna Ponting...wise lady and fabulous pastellist! My second choice is Conté pastel pencils....their downside is they don't fit in my pencil sharpener so I have to use a knife and/or sandpaper to sharpen them.

Gerri Mc
03-31-2010, 09:08 AM
Lucky you Lea!

Thanks for asking this question - I have struggled with that too. Thanks Deirdre for the answer. Is white charcoal easy to come by in the UK? I haven't been able to get it here so far?

jeaneade2001
03-31-2010, 09:16 AM
I read in The Australian Artist Magazine about wetting a point on a hard square pastel like a white conte crayon for highlighting eyes, and that saliva works best because it's sticky and gives great staying power! So there's a bit of my DNA in all my portrait eyes, ha!
Well, it works pretty well for me.

*Deirdre*
03-31-2010, 10:37 AM
Well, I guess my Dna is in my portraits too then! :lol:
Gerri....I found this source (http://www.greatart.co.uk/GENERAL%20SPRIMOEUROCHARCOALPENCILSET-charcoal.htm). Don't know if it's the same quality....but you could ask!And there is a White Charcoal Here (http://www.heatoncooper.co.uk/eshop1/product.php?xProd=946), but it is Derwents...I haven't tried it yet.

I actually bought mine from Dick Blick...along with a few other bits I can't buy here....worth it if you can avoid import tax, by not buying too much!:wink2:

Heart Of Darkness
04-02-2010, 10:57 AM
Thank you for your answer and the link Deirdre.:)

Its good to see you here by the way, when you said goodbye in the Drawing & Sketching forum, I thought you were leaving Wet Canvas altogether. :o

It sounds like I'll be putting a bit of my DNA into my work when I finally get the gear bought. :lol:

Thanks for recommending CarbOthello too Deirdre. :thumbsup:

*Deirdre*
04-02-2010, 11:23 AM
Leave WetCanvas???? Never!!:eek: It's far too good for that!! I just wanted to spend more time in my favourite medium! I used to post a lot in here too....but then found I had too much to do elsewhere....now I'm back!! :D

robertsloan2
04-02-2010, 11:30 AM
I usually leave the catch light bare and work around it, then just use the white of whatever pastels I'm working with. Secondary catch lights that might be tinted, sometimes I just do them over other colors, sometimes use a light tint. If I really want it very bright and precise, then I'll use the General's white charcoal pencil. That trick of wetting the point or corner is new to me, I'm going to have to try it!

But only with nontoxic pastels.

I don't have an electric eraser where I can get at it, that got misplaced in the move and could be anywhere. So I roll a kneaded eraser into a narrow point and poke with it until I've drilled through to bare paper if I want to move the catch light. Usually I've reserved it though.

I can see that on black or dark paper it might help to do a very tiny underpainting, just a dot of Chinese white on the catch light, if I wanted it very bright. Same idea as a white tonal underpainting on black.

Gerri Mc
04-07-2010, 02:34 PM
Well, I guess my Dna is in my portraits too then! :lol:
Gerri....I found this source (http://www.greatart.co.uk/GENERAL%20SPRIMOEUROCHARCOALPENCILSET-charcoal.htm). Don't know if it's the same quality....but you could ask!And there is a White Charcoal Here (http://www.heatoncooper.co.uk/eshop1/product.php?xProd=946), but it is Derwents...I haven't tried it yet.

I actually bought mine from Dick Blick...along with a few other bits I can't buy here....worth it if you can avoid import tax, by not buying too much!:wink2:

Thanks for the link Deirdre. I ordered a couple of clickable erasers form Dick Blick a while back as I couldn't track them down here. They only cost about 3 dollars in total but the shipping cost about 15! They came in a box the size of a shoe box. So basically I got a big box of expensive bubble wrap with two free erasers.:rolleyes:

*Deirdre*
04-07-2010, 05:10 PM
Thanks for the link Deirdre. I ordered a couple of clickable erasers form Dick Blick a while back as I couldn't track them down here. They only cost about 3 dollars in total but the shipping cost about 15! They came in a box the size of a shoe box. So basically I got a big box of expensive bubble wrap with two free erasers.:rolleyes:
But at least you got them! My sister got me one in France....the right size....and I thought I spotted the right one in this country...sent off for them....and it turned out the be about 10 cm wide!:crying: :o

*Marina*
04-07-2010, 05:59 PM
Deirdre, I can get you some and bring them over when I come to the UK

*Deirdre*
04-08-2010, 02:12 AM
Thanks Marina!! You pop in for a cup of tea, on your way back....and I'll give you the money and a shopping list for your next trip!:evil: :D :heart:

Gerri Mc
04-08-2010, 09:50 AM
But at least you got them! My sister got me one in France....the right size....and I thought I spotted the right one in this country...sent off for them....and it turned out the be about 10 cm wide!:crying: :o

I saw some in France too but they were too big - I'll keep a look out for them when I go back.:thumbsup:

Phil Bates
04-08-2010, 01:16 PM
This topic reminds me that even in landscapes with regular pastels we need to have the option of making very sharp spots and edges to draw the viewers eye. These can be done by touching a soft pastel to the surface, like a Schminke or Terry Ludwig.

When trying to do this with pencils, I am usually frustrated because the edges always look fuzzy to me.

The example below shows how using a very soft pastel and touching the surface I was able to get a very sharp white spot.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/08-Apr-2010/183054-Come_This_Way_edge_example.jpg

Hope that helps,
Phil

*Deirdre*
04-08-2010, 01:42 PM
Gosh....you sure know how to do fabulous landscapes Phil...and thanks for the tip too!