Oil Pastel Apples

Oil Pastel Apples - student project

This was a great class to get me thinking about how to adjust my technique to suit the materials being used. I used the apple reference photo provided to make two pastel paintings: one on pastel paper and another on primed oil & acrylic paper.

For the first painting on pastel paper, it was easier to get controlled blends with Zest-It since it dried more quickly and I couldn’t push around the color endlessly with the brush. That said, it took me a lot longer to relieve myself of trying to achieve realism, to loosen up my mark-making, and to enjoy the broad strokes of the pastels.

Oil Pastel Apples - image 1 - student project
The second painting on the primed oil & acrylic paper definitely produced a more luminous result, and even though I think I made better choices with color placement in the first piece, I prefer the textures created by the brush and pastel strokes in the second. Those textures were possible because blending with Zest-It kept the pigments wet and workable much longer than on the unprimed paper, and while I could have blended them out more smoothly with paper towels and added pigment, I stuck with the more painterly effect.

For blending with both pieces, I used Zest-It (+ paintbrushes), paper towels, blending stumps, and both light- and heavy-pressure direct blending.

Oil Pastel Apples - image 2 - student project