Home Member Services Content Areas Tools Info Center WC Partners Shop Help
Search for:

Welcome to the WetCanvas forums. You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions, articles and access our other FREE features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload your own photos and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please visit our help center.

Go Back   WetCanvas > Explore Media > Pastels > Soft Pastel Talk
User Name
Register Mark Forums Read

Salute to our Partners
WC! Sponsors

Our Sponsors
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1   Report Bad Post  
Old 01-09-2003, 08:08 AM
Nature's Glory Nature's Glory is offline
New Member
South Florida
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 48
Hails from United States
Rookie needs demo ...

Hi everyone. I have a set of "landscape" Derwent pastel pencils. And I bought some black Fabriano pastel paper.

I really love this medium but two minutes into my first venture I was immediately discouraged. I have some questions:

1) How on earth do you make a thin line? I do extremely detailed work and unless I have some kind of fog-lifting revelation, this medium is not at all conducive to my painting style. But I LOVE the look and have seen some very detailed work using pastels, so I know it can be done...

2) How do you get the pencils sharp? They keep breaking no matter what kind of sharpener I use. I hope that you don't tell me that I need to use a knife to sharpen the pencils. As fast as they wear down I'd be sharpening pencils all day long. Besides, I tried that, the pastels still crumble!

3) Touching the pastels seem to ruin them. How do you keep from touching the paper???

That's all I can think of for now. I'm sure I will have more questions!

Btw, I did read through the very informative posts but if I missed one that covers this info, please point me to it!

Gloria Hopkins
Reply With Quote
  #2   Report Bad Post  
Old 01-09-2003, 09:26 AM
Redsy333's Avatar
Redsy333 Redsy333 is offline
Lord of the Arts
Depends on the Day!
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 2,956
Hails from United States
First off Welcome

Keeping the pencils sharp are aquired in a few ways, sharpeners(metal but do eat the pencil quickly), Exato knives (best option for very fine lines) , or sand paper ( shapes nicely, w/o eating the wood as well).

Next thing to note is that Pencils are just like the sticks when it comes to density. They range from soft to hard. The softer they are the better they will lay down on the paper, but this is also makes for breakage to occur more frequently.
When using sticks or pencils, you must learn to lighten your pressure you use while applying the pastel to paper. You should always start out lighter and overlay to darken, at least till you get the feel for the medium.
The Derwent are nice pencils, but I have notice that they break more then others, so you will need to work lightly till you find the perfect pencil for you.

Now for detail work, you can sharpen, and you can use blending tools. There are many threads on such, in fact I have one that has pictures of mine.
Pastel shaper/blender thread
Hopefully seeing that will lend you some ideas!

Finally, to answer the question on paper smudging! When working in pastels of any sort there is alot of dust that floats around. So you either have to work on and easel with paper upright in Vertical angle, or work on a drawing table that is angled. Since you are working in Pencils, the Drawing table would be more ideal! IF you do not have one, Try placing paper on a board of sorts and propping up one end, so that the picture angles toward you. This way you can choose the angle that suits you best and lets the dust fall away a little easier.
I use a wedge or a rolled up towel to prop my hand up from the paper, this help keeps my hand from sitting on my work. It will take some getting use too, but once you do, it will become second nature.
In the Demo threads Gaka gives a wonderful demonstration, and in there he shows how he keeps from touching his work.
I will have to find that link and send it on to you

Hope this helps!
~Redsy~ a.k.a. "TIMIDTONIA" SuperMuse fighting the evil Politically Correct Patrol!
~Courtesy of MarkL~
~My New Site~
Reply With Quote
  #3   Report Bad Post  
Old 01-09-2003, 09:29 AM
doe's Avatar
doe doe is offline
South Florida
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,219
Hails from United States
Hi neighbor, I don't use the pencils for anything but small touches of detail and signatures. Prefer making a mess with the soft pastel sticks.

Maybe you could sharpen with sandpaper and not crumble the pastel. That's what I do - also with sticks.

I also saw here recently somewhere a thread about color shapers, that I haven't tried, but maybe you can get more detail with those. Personally use the cardboard tortillions and blenders on rare occasion.

Don't understand #3 - I'm always touching the paper and the pastels.

Maybe you'd prefer colored pencil instead, they can be used for very detailed work. I think there's a colored pencil forum here too. Don't know if this helps at all.

Good luck!
Doreen E. Lepore
My Website
The Hobe Sound Project
Reply With Quote
  #4   Report Bad Post  
Old 01-09-2003, 10:58 AM
crumbedbrains's Avatar
crumbedbrains crumbedbrains is offline
Veteran Member
Brisbane, Australia
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 991
Hails from Australia
Hi Nature!!
Welcome to pastels!!
I too love to do detailed work but to be honest I don't use pencils . .I find I can never sharpen them!! LOL . .sounds like Redsy has got that licked though. I'd fully recommend reading the article above that Gaka has done on getting detail . . plus look through his other threads . . . he's THE MAN on detail here!!
Plenty of good info in them.
Good luck!!
Reply With Quote
  #5   Report Bad Post  
Old 01-11-2003, 06:47 AM
Nature's Glory Nature's Glory is offline
New Member
South Florida
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 48
Hails from United States
Thanks very much for the detailed explanations. I appreciate the time you took and read some interesting and helpful articles. Thanks again!
Gloria Hopkins
Reply With Quote

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 02:18 PM.

© 2014 F+W All rights reserved.