Oil Pastels

by Sep 8, 2020Art Supplies, Shop News

Jane gives us a quick guide to Oil Pastels and looks at the leading brands.

What are oil pastels?

They are crayons made up of a soft, oily composition which makes them the perfect tool for blending. Made from a pigment with a non-drying oil and wax binder. (See Jane’s other articles about Crayons).

They can be used on any surface: paper, canvas, wood. Some people even say they work well for drawing on glass but Jane isn’t convinced as she hasn’t tried it.

For the first time user Jane says any paper can be used but recommends a heavier paper for the best results. Pastel paper (there are many) or watercolour paper will be fine as they come in heavy weights.

Sennelier oil pastels

The sennelier oil pastel is made of top quality pigments, and a creamy texture that allows for a great deal of freedom in pictorial expression.

Sennelier oil pastels really are the softest, softer even than the Caran d’Ache Neopastels. They have a texture similar to lipstick and will glide onto the surface of your paper. You can achieve a paint effect with them by using a paint brush dipped in a little solvent and then you have an oil paint.

Single colours cost £2.30

rack of sennelier oil pastels
sennelier oil pastels - close-up of three red crayons

Neopastels by Caran D’ache

 

Neopastels from Caran D'ache

These are another high quality oil pastel.

They have a soft, velvety texture and high pigment content.

The neopastel offers excellent coverage making them suitable for a wealth of applications from lines to flat wash, blending to stencilling, or batik effects. They are also soluble in turpentine and can be used with ease for oil painting on canvas.

Single colours cost £2.45

neopastels packaging
rack of neopastels crayons
Caran D'ache neopastels colour chart
Gadsby's neopastels set prices
Neopastel Sets 48 & 24

Neopastels project

Caran D’ache think that you may want to see a project using the Neopastels. So, they provide a leaflet showing a sample project.

It’s by Martin Stankewitz from Germany.

This is what it says in the leaflet about his piece.

Martin prepares the stiff paper with an oil colour, applies NEOPASTEL over the entire surface and spreads the colour with a rubber or wooden spatula. He then scratches away at the upper layers of colour to reveal the base exactly where he wants.

Griffin Alkyd fast drying oil colours
Griffin Alkyd fast drying oil colours

The leaflets are available in the shop with this project inside. The whole range of Neopastels are also available in sets and single colours.

neopastels pinks

If you want to move the oil pastels with a little turpentine you will see the pastel turn in to an oil colour, this can give your art work an added dimension.

turps for moving pastels

A pallet knife is also useful to move colour around.

pallet knife

Gadsby’s sell all of the artists materials and supplies mentioned in this article. The prices were correct at the time of publication.

Jane is a member of the Gadsby’s team. She has a wide knowledge of the arts & crafts products and materials sold by Gadsby’s both from the perspective of an advisor in the shop and, for many of the products, from personal use too.

 

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