26 Dec
Details with Pastels?

For this drawing, I wanted to see how much detail I could get using pastels (which are like sticks of chalk) compared to colored pencils. So far I've only been using the pastels to draw portraits, which are different than detailed images like this one. I don't think you can achieve the same level of precision with pastels as you can with colored pencils, but I do think it is possible with practice, the right techniques, and the right paper, to get a substantial amount of details in your artwork using pastels.

Many artists use a paper called Pastelmat and can achieve highly realistic drawings.  With a few exceptions, I think the drawings I've seen on this paper always have a hint of fuzziness to them and lack the crispness I prefer.  

I can't seem to get the results I want when I try using Pastelmat, and I prefer using sanded paper, either UArt or LuxArchival.  Some artists don't use UArt because the backside isn't completely archival, but other very renown pastel artists use it without question.  I've had better results using sanded paper with pastels to get both details and soft blending. 

I have learned never to say never, though!  Experimenting and learning new techniques is part of the fun of being an artist!

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