Achieve interesting effects on a multitude of supports…
Oil pastels appeared in the artistic world long before the dry pastels did. Their composition is made up of pigment and oil or beeswax as a binder and therefore offer a completely different texture and application.
Whilst they are not as multipurpose or popular as the traditional pastels, you can achieve beautiful results on small supports. Their oily binder allows you to use them with a multitude of techniques and mediums, and your use of oil pastels depends entirely on your artistic ambition.
Their composition allows a very good adhesion of the colours to every type of support with excellent covering power. You will have excellent results on special oil paper and primed linen canvas, but also art boards, cardboard, wood, medium density fibre board, ceramics, metal, glass, and even certain plastics are all suitable for this medium.
Oil pastel ranges can offer complex and intense shades, but you do not need a lot of colours to achieve a good composition. They can be mixed with a rag in order to soften the transitions between different colours and mix different shades. Try not to mix more than 2 or 3 colours together as they will become rapidly saturated and produce muddy shades. When creating layers, make sure you allow the first layer to dry for a few minutes before adding the next to prevent damaging what you have already done.
The pastels offer similar qualities which are desirable of oil paint and using the pastel form does not require a preliminary preparation for the artist and offers a direct and sensual contact with the material. They can even be mixed with turpentine, alkyd colours and oil paints as they are perfect for combining. Even though the pastels themselves repel water they can even be combined with water mixable oils.
Very few artists favour exclusively oil pastel for their works of art, but their voluptuous consistency and very enjoyable application remain a pure pleasure that must be tried.