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Oil painting and oil pastels

May 29, 2012

Living Tree, Oil pastel on Cansons pastel paper (SOLD)

This is an older work of mine. I’m including it to show the different textures one can get with oil pastels, and also because working this way-  ie more fantasy-like, is very close to me and is what I am missing with the more realistic oil paintings.

Trying to keep an open student mind/beginners mind I did a looser crop of my bottles, then let it dry a bit and worked into it with oil bars and oil paints, keeping in mind my oil pastel techniques. I’m happy with the direction, it has promise.

My bottles, close crop, first stage, oil paint on canvas board

My bottles, close crop, later stage, oil paint on canvas board

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14 Responses to “Oil painting and oil pastels”

  1. madsilence Says:

    Your paintings in the style of Living Tree have always been my favorites


  2. […] Oil painting and oil pastels (artcalling.wordpress.com) […]

  3. decorartuk Says:

    This is what you call colours! Brilliant. They are so rich, it looks as if I can even “taste” them with my eyes – two sensations simply somehow merge… I’m not sure how to explain this.

    I’ve never tried oil pastels, but I’m guessing this is a messy job? Ordinary pastels can be fun, but my finger skin gets too dry after a while of rubbing them onto paper.

    • szoutewelle Says:

      Thank you, that’s what I love about oil pastels, that sensation of working with virtually pure pigment.

      They are less messy than paints anyway! And yes, when blending with fingers you get vividly coloured fingertips, and sometimes muddy fingertips! But I keep some wet wipes in my studio (no sink/basin upstairs, grrr). And cleanup is easy with warm water and soap.

      I tend toward them rather than dry pastels because they are easy to layer, scratch away layers, and blend without getting muddy. If you don’t like what you’ve done, just scrape away with a flat razor blade and reapply. I also like how you can hold the strokes without getting blended effects, and of course those dense rich areas of colour.

      I love your description of almost being able to taste them visually. I often use tasting/eating metaphors with these Sennelier pastels. They are creamy and scrumptious.

      One caution if considering trying them, one can get scared away by beginning with the boxes of standard oil pastel colours. The choice of colour is rather limited -you get those screaming greens, YIKES, instead of the dusty range of sages and mosses I like, and the texture is harder, so they are less versatile for the techniques I use. I’d really invest in single Senneliers. If you want palette suggestions let me know.

      No they aren’t paying me, they should.

      • decorartuk Says:

        I agree, they should! 🙂 Looking at everything you’ve said, I think I will have a go – I love the idea of being able to scrape some bits of and start again.

        I do agree with you about the limited choice of colour if you get just the standard boxes/sets – they seem to be brilliant at including the most horrible dirty, mucky greens and blues. This applies to anything – watercolour, oils or gouache. It seems anything that’s regular is a bit ordinary and boring or is it just us being picky? 🙂

        With regards ot the palette, what would you go for? I mean I haven’t got a clue what I will paint… I’m not sure I’m good at something that doesn’t exist, so it will probably once again be some vase and flowers… How predictable…

  4. clinock Says:

    I really like your oil work – the pastel piece is delightfully whimsical, glows with colour and the grid foundation works well in both the ‘frame’ and central image – but beats me how you obtain such detail and clean edges with pastel – do you sharpen the points? The oil paintings are a surprise because you gave me the idea that your process was too tight when using oils. This still life looks quite loose to me and beautifully executed – almost verging on abstraction – super work Sarah…

    • szoutewelle Says:

      Thank you! I’m using oil pastels, and they keep an edge, if not a point. The Sennelier ones which I have been slowly changing over to, despite their creaminess, hold a reasonable point. I talk a bit about this medium in this post https://artcalling.wordpress.com/2012/06/02/sennelier-colours-palette-suggestions/, (or just put Sennelier in the search box if the link isn’t active), and there is also a slide show of several other oil pastel works of mine.

      Well, the oil painting you are referring to was a deliberate effort to loosen up. So thank you for confirming that. I know that when I start painting again after this short haitus, it will be more in that vein. Hopefully.

  5. clinock Says:

    Oh and thank you for reading my poems and liking ‘When Loving Rests’ – not many people go to that part of my blog…


  6. I love “Living Tree.” It looks like a quilt and an artwork combined. I especially love the vivid hot pink colors. The picture is very funky and playful. Beautiful work.


  7. Cool, really like the bright colors in the tree 🙂


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