Intro To Painting with Pastels | Karen Ciocca | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

5 Lessons (25m)
    • 1. Into To Pastel Painting Trailer

    • 2. Materials & History

    • 3. Getting Started Underpainting

    • 4. Blending & Detailing

    • 5. Project Details & FInal Thoughts

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About This Class

Hi everyone, As a fine artist, I have a passion for pastel painting, and in this class, you will learn what pastels are, a glimpse at my favorite pastelists throughout history, the different types of pastels and other materials you may need to get started.  I will be happy to teach you the techniques I learned along the way! 

Meet Your Teacher

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Karen Ciocca

Graphic Designer, Illustrator, Fine Artist


Hello Friends!

I am presently the Art and Marketing Director at a Granola-Nut company who also distributes organic and all-natural nuts, seeds and fruit to supermarkets and chains nationwide. 

My career has been as a corporate and boutique agency in-house graphic/package designer and digital illustrator. My packaging illustration and design work have been on retail and supermarket shelves for over 30 years. Including Pilot Pen, Bigelow Tea, Perrier, Lindt Chocolate, Poland Spring, Aurora Products.  

I am also a professional fine artist and I love to paint animals and nature. Having been commissioned numerous times. 

I am excited to share my skills as a Graphic Designer and Fine Artist here on Skillshare! 

 <... See full profile

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1. Into To Pastel Painting Trailer: Hello, everyone. My name is Karen CEO Ca M. A graphic designer and a digital illustrator. Thank you for joining my intro to pass Still painting class. And in this class, I would love to teach you the basics of pastels with types of pastels to look for the types of papers to look for, how to prepare paper, how to set up your easel and the tips I've learned along the way. I'm excited to have you here and let's get started. 2. Materials & History: pastel painting has been around for over 500 years, where Leonardo did, and she was introduced to them by another artist. My favorite Impressionist painters were Mary Cassatt and Edward Day got William Merritt Chase founded the Society of American Painters in Pastel in 18 82 and other societies are around today. Every move made the screen, and it sold in May 2012. $420 million. Pastels are made from pure dry pigments, Amos oil paints and chalk and a binder dried into a stick. Harder pastels have more binder. Pastel papers can come in all different sizes and colors. Thes air daler, Roundy's and I also love the meaty Chinese papers. But some of my favorite papers air sanded like thes Solenni, a pastel cars that could be a little bit more costly. And I have another solution if you like the standard. This is what I used the art spectrum color fix on watercolor paper or matte board. You just painted on its new acrylic base with some stand, or it's got some promise in it. I do not recommend using fixative. It's toxic. You need to use it outside. I only use it when I have a paper that I've used to much pastel and I need a new tooth there. I keep my softer pastels in a wooden box with little compartments. But another way I keep them is in cornmeal in plastic containers. As you'll see in this next life, a great set up is to sit comfortably in front of your easel that is in a vertical position , with a piece of paper under your artwork folded up to catch all the little drips as you work. These are my harder pastels. The gallery send my heart and the Prisma color. New pastels are used for blocking. In. I was makeup, sponges and peanuts that you get for packing material for blending pastel pencils for detail work. And my softer pastels are the art spectrums, the Mount Visions, the Rembrandts. The Solenni is there for the bulk of your paintings, and the pan pastels are great for blocking in, but I also used them throughout the paint. I use isopropyl alcohol for blending, and I'll demonstrate that in a later video. Thank you so much for watching my overview on materials. And in the next video, we're gonna learn some basic 3. Getting Started Underpainting: so welcome back, and in this lesson, we're gonna paint the sweet little orange, and they're in the basic techniques of painting with pastels. It took a piece of used watercolor paper, so the other side is painted on, and this is great for practice and took my color fixed primer. And I'm just brushing on in different directions and keeping it kind of smooth here. Every position did onto my my easel and I'm going in with after it's completely dry with a pastel pencil or hard Pestana to draw in my orange and get my shape down. Now that it's dry, I've started to black in my darkest colors and just my under painting with E new pastels and my harder pastels who always wanna work from your hardest pastels to your soffits pastels. You can't layer usually the heart pastels on top of the soft pastels. That's why we go in this order, and I'm just adding my darkest darks, and I'm not being really neat about it. I'm just sort of scribbling it in, cause I'm gonna take my alcohol and wash over this in a minute, and it's gonna just completely change here. I'm adding a darker blue to my background. It's a really good compliment for the orange itself. It's gonna make a beautiful under painting that sparkles through Teoh the top players I'm and my highlights is thinking about my my light and shadow. I'm thinking about form here. I want to try to get the orange to look like a sphere and this is how we start. I'm taking my isopropyl alcohol now and I'm just wedding the whole orange area and it's going to solidify into that scratch, you know, sanded paper. But if I were to do this, I can sandpaper with mutinies the mutinous can't side paper or the other papers. It might work the paper a little bit, So I do not recommend using too much. You can do it. I prefer during this on my sandpaper or my you know, color fix prime paper. The other way you can do this is to just put down a layer of watercolor as you're under painting. And a lot of people do that. This blue is gonna be very rich is coming out dark here. Um, but like I said earlier, the Iran in the development of this piece that is just gonna shine right through. It's just you're gonna notice it, but it's just gonna add this depth and this luminosity to the painting room with this completely dry before we go on to our next step. So now there's dry I'm and in some lighter values. It's my background. It's my foreground. I'm just establishing that light connection to the fruit and start adding some oranges, medium color value oranges into the orange itself and start building up that form as s fair . I'm just stumbling this in. I'm not really being going neat about it yet. Um, it's just a very like layer. And so losing the hard pastels here, I'm adding the green around naval area of the orange and just bring it into the orange itself. If it any more blue to the background area, just letting that darker blue kind of shine through on the surface texture of the paper. You don't have a luminescence about it in the end. Still not being that need, and I'm still using the hard pastels here. I'm coming in with some purples and my Washington is coming off okay. Yeah, I'm just spreading it around here. and they're just trying to make a background texture background flow. I'm just gonna keep building this under painting until I see it is evolving and trying to take a form. So here are trying to build up that core shadow that little core that you see in, um in nature, adding some more like values on the top of the orange. Sometimes origin get really yellow up there, bringing some reflected like that down below, and it's really starting to look like a sphere E. Do you like to add some blues into or cool color into the shadow area around? Nothing in nature is one color. I like to add that mixture of warm and cool together. It just looks like a little reflection. And here I'm introducing some green to the table area. These colors all work together here, adding peak. So here I am getting like a cool I mean, yeah, a cool color kind of next to that, or red, and it's gonna from a distance, just make it sparkle and just have us glow about it. It kind of looks like a mess right now. I'm fugly and a lot of people might give up at this place? A, uh it's not coming out, but it really it really is. You wait and see. It's just going to keep evolving and be quite a beautiful little painting here, a little sludge in the background. I don't over smudge. I just wanted to be very juicy and loose, and I'm going in all kinds of directions. And I'm just kind of stumbling those and lending those colors together that I placed earlier sort of a model look and sort of feathering it out. And that's looking pretty good. Bring some. That purple down below is a shadow e Don't let to use black per se in any of my paintings. I will use compliments to create a black ish tone because I think it looks richer. So here I'm adding that dark, brownish red and gray. And that's a purple, um, just lends a little bit, and it really works. So this under painting is really coming along. It's starting to take shape. You're blending mostly without, um, blending with your hand just a little bit here. I'm just adding more color, and I'm Onley. Blending with my new pastels is they're probably still my heart or pastels. You could do a whole painting with the new pastels. Are this semi hard galleries? They will do a lovely job here are really adding some darker grace, um, to my core area of my orange and the shadow area. Siga, purplish gray. Well, smudge, getting kind of dirty. But that's OK, the fun of it. So the orange has always little dimples, and it's so using your fingers, actually a good way to get that texture in there because the tip of your finger will make a little round Dempo in the next video. We're just going to tidy up this painting and finish it up by just adding more layers and pretty much doing the same thing. But we're gonna go use softer pastels in the end. I'll see you there 4. Blending & Detailing: I've added background color. Same thing. Not blending with a blender I might have blended, tightened it with my fingers closer to the orange there and just a blurred a little bit. But you could see I added blues and purples and a, um, beige yellow to where the light source is, and I will keep adding and adding to that as I go along, I had some purple under the orange for the shadow area and so reflective orange onto the table. Reflective color from the table onto the orange on the bottom. And I'm just adding detail here. Pushing, holding. Did you step back? Take a second away and look back in in a minute or two and see if you see something that's distracting or you want to fix. We want ad. It's really coming along now, and you'll see your painting evolve. You want to try not to. Overwork are paintings, so I think sometimes to take a step back and look at it. But with pastels, I mean, it's forgiving, so you can go in and erase something with a kneaded eraser if you need to. So unlike watercolors, where if you put a mark down, It's there. It's It's really hard to lift without ruining your surface paper. But with pastels, you could probably with this surface and a standard surface, go in with a new eraser and lift some of that past still sort of like silly putty. Just press it down and lift it, press it down and lift it until you got your tooth back and you can add more color. And that is looking pretty good. And it's not looking fugly anymore. See, it's really evolved. It's it's really looking into a beautiful piece. At this point, I'm adding some Rembrandt soft pastels on top to give those little dimples in the orange peel. Yeah, I'm gonna add some Grayish flew into the area as well. I'm using. This is probably Solenni. They're very soft, some kind of pushing hard to get those highlights in with where it's really reflective. So that's a very soft and still there. There's a cool blue, and just like if you know we're doing an orange. But if you were doing a skin tone, it would be the same thing. There's always kind of blues coming out from your skin, um, and warm colors You probably see greens in there, so really observe what you're painting for color. I love how that, like blue was against that bright orange that's really gonna make it sparkle. So no finishing up my painting, I'm working on my background. I'm very lightly adding, Still has his hard pastels I can see I'm using here. That one might be a little softer, but I'm adding my highlights and highlights are always last, and I'm just softening up. So measures I like some hard, some soft like lost and found edges. It's always beautiful and final details and tidying up and just finishing up the pains and putting little darks like they're right next to the highest lights. So that's gonna make it really popped. In the end here , I decided that I wanted the base of the orange to be more grounded, so I added more purple to it. I don't usually like to use black per se in any painting. I do. I like to make lends that kind of, um, resemble black so but I do like the purple going on here, and that place is a little bit fingers, but you keep adding the compliment over it. You're gonna get a beautiful A dark shadow, tight color. And I'm using softer pastels here. The lost and found edges. Some of them are very, very focused in some parts. They are not. I was just gonna blend all that together. Well, im and agreeing to my base. My, um, tabletop. And I could see that may some strokes going vertically, some horizontally. I see that a lot in precious paintings. There's a lot of cross hatching going on. Sometimes I can't be well enough alone. Oh, we make decisions as you paint, you know, we get into that zone, and we just kind of Lou along. That looks pretty good. So that's it for this little painting. This was a lot of fun and hope you learned a lot about how to use pastels and materials. And in the next video, we're gonna go over your project, and I cannot wait to see what you guys do. See you there 5. Project Details & FInal Thoughts: thank you so much for taking my intro to pastel painting class. It was a lot of fun for me to teach it. I hope you enjoyed it. I think that for your class project, it would be really great to copy my painting and follow along and do the same thing or pick another piece of fruit like an apple or lemon or a pair. You can find a good reference material at picks obey dot com, and you could find more at on splash dot com. Both of those sites are, um, copy right commercial use and attribution free. It's really great. I use that for my reference all the time to find affordable pastels. I do recommend going to your local craft stores. They usually have a 40% off coupon if you're just starting off with pastels and this paper , the can't Sanex L Mixed Media and the cans on watercolor paper. Same brand 1 £40 is a great way to get started cause it's, you know it's more affordable and could play on and learn the technique before you invest in the more expensive fine art paper. I can't wait to see what you've done. So please post it in the project section and ask me any questions you like. I'm happy to answer them. The next video that I'm going to produce about pastels is a demo of this, which I just showed in the beginning of the section. And this is going to be broken down into easy steps so you can do it. And I hope you join me and I can't wait to see you again. Thank you. Have a great day.