What to do with the soft pastels you forgot about in the bottom of your handbag: A Tutorial

1.  Swear

2. Frantically check the three red lipsticks that you always carry but rarely get a chance to wear

3. Use for colour blocking, like so:


(Lie flat and don’t bother brushing away the dust.  This is important.)

4. Lock out furry helpers


5. Paint pastel (or probably charcoal too) into art surface carefully using methylated spirits and cheap foam brush (lessens brushstrokes, unless that’s your thing).  Don’t bother rinsing brush, just re-dip in metho to moisten.


6. Inhale


7. Smoosh all the tiny crumbs with fingertip while surface is still wet, otherwise they will still be there when dry and you’ll either have to pick them off (which may stuff up uniformity of colour) or leave them on and deal with the textured surface


8. Vow for the sake of your future children that their father will have a bit more melanin than you


9. Brush carefully over surface that you’ve just smooshed the crumbs into to remove finger prints and maintain uniformity

10. Realise that you’ll probably have to do this again to lower half of drawing once detail has been added, as soft pastel on easels leave a track of dust underneath where you’ve drawn (therefore, if using soft or hard pastel, start at the top and work down.  Always.  Even if the fun bit isn’t for ages).  Feel like a dill.

11. Paint the furniture


12.  Allow to dry (won’t take long – metho, huzzah!)


13. Weep softly at the state of your basin


14. This technique might also be a good idea if there is very dark colour blocking higher in the drawing than lighter, more delicate work.  You may find gravity catches up with your older work, like this:






Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s