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Saturday, October 20, 2012

My Review of Diane Townsend Metallic Pastels

'Golden Dreams'      5x7     pastel         ©Karen Margulis   $50 click here
Are you looking to spice up your pastel paintings? There is nothing like a little sparkle to to spice up an otherwise dull painting.  Metallic, iridescent, pearlescent are the names given to these pastels. It depends on the manufacturer.  I recently rediscovered my set of Diane Townsend Metallic soft form pastels. I say rediscovered because they were lost in my studio and found during my studio clean up.

The painting in today's post was done completely with the set of metallic pastels. I put down a layer of several of the colors and sprayed the painting with water.  I was curious to see how the metallic pigment would react to the water.  I wasn't disappointed.  Some of the colors rose to the top of the puddles and swirled like an oil slick. I tilted the board slightly and let some of the wet pastel drip. I let it dry.  You can see the sparkle of the gold and copper pastels.  Fun!

Diane Townsend Metallic set of 12 pastels

  • I LOVE Diane Townsend pastels Her soft form pastels are some of my favorites. These metallics are no exception. They are so rich and beautiful.
  • The metallic pastels are extremely soft and buttery. They go on like velvet. You need to use an VERY light touch. A little bit goes a long way. They are so soft that they crumble easily. (see photo) If you press down too hard they crumble right in your hand. Of course I am saving all of the pieces to reconstitute someday.
  • I now know to use a very light touch but for the pastels that have already crumbled I will use them in other ways....sprinkle dust, apply with soft tools like pan pastels....No pastel dust will go to waste!
  • I love the rich metallic colors and will try to use them as spices or accents in a painting rather than for the entire painting.
  • I haven't tried to use them for an underpainting with an alcohol wash but since it just occurred to be I will have to try and report back!
Do you like to use metallic or iridescent pastels? Do you have a favorite way of using them? I'd love to hear from you!


Carolyn Hancock said...

Karen, your blog series on experimenting with pastel and water has been great. Love hearing and seeing the results.

Lora said...

I have never used metallic pastels before, but after reading your blog I am excited to give them a try.

One thing I have tried is Daler- Rowney Pearlescent Liquid Acrylics. They come in many different colors and create a subtle metallic affect. I can painted them right over my pastels and vice versa.