Oil Pastels is one of those mediums which can be used for various projects. You can paint anything with them and the only hurdle is that you must know how to use it.
Understanding of application of oil pastels, layering and using certain tools will certainly help you in getting rid of those struggles. Of course by all means you can paint anything with any medium but the question is “what do you want to achieve as the final result?”
Some like abstract and some like to draw just geometric shapes. I am talking about paintings that look great from a distance of 4-6 feet, which is the right distance to view a painting so that you brain can digest every element of the painting to make it look as a whole but don’t worry about small strokes that make up a good painting.
Another challenge with oil pastels is that, they are not pointed which is a drawback when it comes to reach/paint corners. Again you can make use of some easily available tools to minimize the effort and enhance the beauty of your painting.
All of my courses follow the simple principles and tools to achieve a believable and satisfying result.
If you read this far, I am sure you will be interested in my POPULAR Oil Pastel courses. Check out the course here
Following are the list of my recommended materials that I have used/ have been using for long time
Pentel Arts Oil Pastels, 25-Color Set
First let’s look at the medium range Oil Pastels, which is good for starting off your journey with the medium.
Brustro Artists Oil Pastels – 48 Colors
Very rich oil pastels with smooth blending. You can use mineral spirit/ odorless turpentine for blending colors. If you would like to try it out, a small pack of 24 colors is also available. From my experience, I found then to be very competitive with the Gallery oil pastels. Inside INDIA this would be a better option.
Mungyo Gallery Soft Oil Pastels (48 Pieces)
If you are planning to go ahead with Gallery oil pastels, which costs little more than the above one.
This also comes in a set of 36 and 24.
Papers/Pad/Sketch book for painting
First option would be to find an artist sketch book in your local stationary shop. Look for at least 130gsm or more.
Some of the other option with inexpensive materials that you can afford are as below.
Scholar Artist Pad Skilled (150 GSM Natural Shade Cartridge Paper) (A4)
Brustro Artists Sketch Book Wiro Bound A5 Size (14.8 cm x 21 cm), 116 Pages,160 GSM (Acid Free)
This is the one I always use for my sketches, plans, compositions, color checking etc. Again it is an inexpensive and handy tool that you can invest.
Brustro Artists Pastel Papers 160 GSM A5 Bright & Soft Shades Assorted (40 Sheets)
If you plan to have different light colored pastel papers, this one is a must. I have used it many of my courses. The choice of color depends on the subject you are trying to paint. Above all the paintings done on these papers last longer than the usual paper. It also has little bit of texture and good for soft pastels too.
Tulips Cotton Buds/Swabs
Apart from blending stumps, you can use cotton swabs to reach smaller areas and corners. This is a must tool for oil pastel painting.
Isomars Paper Stumps Set Of 6
These blending stumps are useful for shading and blending pencils, soft pastels, charcoal and oil pastels as well. But with oil pastel, you need be very careful about the color application so that you don’t apply the color from the tip of the stump from your previous application. Be careful to keep it clean. I use this very rarely but good to have as a common tool for the art projects.
Apart from the above necessary tools, if you have any doubts about using or buying an alternative tool, please let me know in the comments and I will try my best to help you.
P.S. : You can paint on canvas too, give it a try. Just make sure that you try it on canvas panel/board, which is hard enough so that you can blend easily with some pressure.