2018 Workshop Schedule. New workshops added! click here for details.
Visit my Patreon Page for more painting instruction

Friday, April 06, 2012

Pastel Techniques to Try...Dusting

'Blowing in the Breeze' 16x20 pastel ©Karen Margulis
Purchase painting $250
If you are in the Atlanta area I invite you to come to the Southeastern Pastel Society meeting this Monday April 9th at 7pm. I will be giving a presentation and demo on painting a Wildflower Meadow.

I love trying new techniques with my pastels. Dusting has become my new favorite technique to use and I am having fun discovering new ways to 'dust'. Dusting isn't a new technique to pastels. Bill Creevy talks about it in his book 'The Pastel Book'. Degas used the dusting technique in his work. I was playing around with dusting at the same time that Richard McKinley posted about it on his Pastel Pointer blog. Richard gives a wonderful description of the technique HERE. I am still experimenting but today's painting is an example of how I used dusting.
Tools for dusting with pastels
Glassine paper and a rolling pin make dusting easy

For this painting, the pastel dusting comes at the finish. When the painting is almost done and just need some final touches I lay it flat. I choose the pastels (colors and values) that I think will give me the effect I want. I am using Jack Richeson pastels to dust because they are large and not too soft and crumbly and the colors are very vivid and rich (I also got them for a great deal so I don't mind shaving them into dust!)
  • I shave my pastel using the side of a palette knife. I vary the pressure to create fine dust to chunks depending on what I would like.
  • I mix colors and vary the fineness of the dust to create more interest.
  • To set the dust I simply cover the painting with glassine paper and roll it with a pastry rolling pin. I like the size of the pastry rolling pin. I get better control than with any other tool.
  • For this painting my dust got too thick and I covered up too much of the painting. It's easy to get carried away! But it was actually a good thing. I took my palette knife and drew back into the dust creating stems and grasses. Cool!
To see another painting of mine that utilizes dusting see this blog post HERE.


Dawn Hartigan said...

what a cool idea to get that really soft dreamy look. Lovely!

robertsloan2art said...

Thanks for a great demo! I love that effect, like spattering in watercolor. I'll definitely have to try it sometime!

Karen said...

Thanks Dawn! It is so much fun to do...easy to get carried away :)

Karen said...

It is too much fun. I have ne=ow discovered you can draw into the 'dust' with a pin to get some fin lines. There is always something fun to discover!

Vanessa said...

Dusty has a lovely effect!, I've only used it once but slowly trying to figure out when I should use it. And yeah it's easy to carried away with it, it's kind of exciting once you start lol.

Karen said...

I think it has a lot of potential! I plan on doing some experimenting!