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Art Experiment #1: Soft Pastels & Water

Experimenting with Soft Pastels

I recently got lured into the local art supply store sale and ended up with a basket full of goodies. Among my goodies, were some soft pastels. I decided to check out YouTube to see what instructional videos they had on using pastels. I found some interesting stuff, including mixing pastels and water to achieve an effect similar to watercolor. 

What I Did

I took a plastic bin and filled it with about an inch or two of water. Using my Exacto blade, I carefully shaved bits of my pastels into the water, using at least 2-3 colors for interest. Then I took 5 inch square sheets of watercolor paper and quickly dipped them into the water. I let the paper sit on top of the water for about 5 seconds, then quickly pulled the paper out of the water and flipped it back over to dry.   

The results were fascinating! It created a marbleized paper effect. I found the textures to be quite beautiful, so I kept going. On some of the papers I even re-dipped them with more pastel shavings to layer over the first round. It's a really fun and easy trick. I highly recommend it if you are looking for a way to make interesting textures. 

My Results


The Video 

If you would like to watch the original video by Blick Art Materials here it is:


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