So what do I like about pastels?
- They are quick, you can lay down colour in seconds, layer after layer.
- They are easy to change, almost endlessly depending on your paper. You can work and rework and add and remove over and over again.
- There are loads of colours available, but you can get lots of effects just with a basic set.
- They're easy to take out and put away.
- You can get lovely veils of colour, as well as expressive marks.
What don't I like?
- They are dusty, chalky, stick to your fingers and clothes and work surfaces. Which actually you don't even notice when you're deep in the process, but do have to clean up eventually - the whole room!
- There seems to be a lot of waste - so much pigment just falls down the paper, and some colours get used up fast. I've been collecting it in an envelope, perhaps to use as a base for another one - waste not, want not, or just Scrooge?
- The results I've had so far are - pastelly, I want to get some bright brights, dark darks - which is possible as I've seen in others' work but not in mine so far.
- I tried quick sketching with them (below) and they were - ungainly, clutzy, although once I stopped trying so hard to control them (got really annoyed!) and let them do their thing, I was happier with the results - in the last drawing.
- They seem very fragile - you can fix them very lightly with hairspray or fixative, but a heavy coat changes the surface alarmingly. Storing and framing must be a challenge!