Pastel and pastel painting

June 22, 2020

In this article Jane talks about and uses pastels which she freely admits are not one of her favourite mediums.

Choice of pastels

Oil Pastels

Oil pastels are made up of pigment mixed with a non-drying oil and a wax binder.

Sennelier Oil pastels – £2.30 each


Sennelier oil pastels

Soft Pastels

Soft pastels tend to smear and smudge to give you a soft effect, and are crumbly and create a fine dust when used.

These are just some soft pastels available.

Unison soft pastels – £3.83 each

These pastels are creamy and all handmade and good pigment.



Unison soft pastels

Winsor & Newton Soft pastels – £2.42 each

These pastels have good pigment and nice to blend.

Winsor Newton soft pastels

Sennelier extra soft pastels – £3.20 each

These pastels are extremely soft and crumble easily but have a great pigment and easy to blend.

Sennelier extra soft pastels

Pastel pencils and cubes – £3.70 each

Pastel pencils are a good way to get detail on your paintings.

pastel pencils and cubes

Putting the pastels to use

Jane decided to create a pastel sunset with soft pastels and pastel pencils. She chose an A4 sheet of pastel paper in bright yellow.

pastel paper

The setting sun!

I’ve started with white unison pastel for the sun and a bright yellow and orange Winsor & Newton extra soft pastel for the sky. Smudged together with a tissue to blend the colours together.

starting with pastels

As old as the hills…

Jane used a burnt sienna pastel pencil to outline the hills and smudged them together with a burnt red earth unison pastel.


As old as the hills

The hills are alive…

Then keep adding more hills to the foreground. Jane found a paper blending stump is useful to keep the edges of the hills crisp.


the hills are alive

Completing the horizon…

Now add hills on the right to pull everything together.


completing the horizon

Add as many hills as you like.


more hills

The ‘finished pastel work’

Jane said

“I will admit I’m not very good with pastels but I have enjoyed this little project as a new medium.”

finished pastel

Gadsby’s sell all of the art & craft materials and supplies necessary for creating pieces of art like those created by Jane. The prices shown were correct at the time of publication of the article.

You have to supply the artistic talent and dedication to make the pieces you love. It is hard work, but it is amazing fun too.

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.

Please note that this is not a service that Gadsbys offer to clients – just an example of the private work done by one of the highly skilled and knowledgable Gadsby’s team shown for your interest.


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