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

Monday, November 26, 2012

A Recommended Pastel Set for Painting on the Go

Collage of Mini Pastel Originals
All Minis are available for $15 each or 2 for $25 email if interested
 In a couple of weeks by daughter and I are taking a cruise. Of course I am looking forward to some lounge chair pastel painting.  My favorite activity for the days at sea is to sit on a lounger with a small box of pastels and paper and paint some minis (2.5x3.5)  I usually take a small box of pieces of a variety of pastels but I have another recommendation for an even more portable and neater alternative....Holbein Pastels Stephanie Birdsall set of 24.

'Landscape Impression'     2.5 x 3.5     pastel

Holbein Pastels Stephanie Birdsall set of 24
I came across this set at the last IAPS convention.  I was shopping at the trade show i.e. Candy Store and I discovered the goodies at the Holbein booth.  I was buying a set of Gouache paints for underpainting.  If I spent another $5 I would get a bonus so I was trying to decide what else I needed.  Stephanie Birdsall was in the booth doing a demo with her set of Holbeins. She was a great salesperson and convinced me I needed her set. Her gorgeous painting made it an easy decision!  Here are the selling points and why you may wish to give these pastels a try.

  • They are a medium soft pastel shaped into neat sticks. You can use the side or the sharper edges for detail. They look hard like a Nupastel but they go down softer. The hard stick form makes them clean to use, a bonus when painting on the go where you don't want to make a dusty mess.
  • The colors! Stephanie explained to me that she selected the colors in her set to allow you to pain any subject. There are warm and cool versions of colors plus a few greyed colors, black and white. By layering these colors you have a very good selection. You can use the white and black to adjust the value of your colors if needed. Working with a limited palette is a great exercise. You will discover that you really can paint with just a few pastels!
  • The box!  I am not one who usually like to leave my pastels in the original box but this set is packaged so well and so compact that it is a great box to take on the go. The box has a lid plus another cardboard sleeve to slide over the box for extra security.
  • Clean, good variety and portability make these pastels an excellent choice for throwing into a bag with some paper for painting anywhere you go.  I am planning to do a demo with just this set to give you an idea what you can do.
The Holbein Stephanie Birdsall set is available at Dakota pastelshttp://www.dakotapastels.com/pages/softpastels-holbein.aspx

Mini original pastels make great Holiday gifts. They are available for $15 each or 2 for $25 by check or Paypal. Email me kemstudios@yahoo.com if interested.


Stokesy said...

Thanks for the info in this post about the pastel set. I'm curious about how you contain your pastel dust when painting in a public place (like on a cruise ship) where you don't want to leave a mess behind. What do you do?

Karen said...

Great question! I carry a small folded piece of a flannel backed vinyl tablecloth which I put down where I am painting. IWhen I am finsihed I fold it up and dump any dust in the trash. I also have some painting towels (dishtowels) that I put down on top of the tablecloth. I bring a few of these as they are great dust collectors but get dirty. I also have a pack of baby wipes handy. All of these things help me keep tidy!

Catherine said...

I was looking into ordering those Stephanie Birdsall pastels that you recommended but the link to Dakota doesn't work. On Dakota's website I can't find that brand. Any help Karen? Love your blog as always... :)

Karen said...

Thanks Catherine! I just checked again and the Holbein brand is in Dakota under the Soft pastel category. Let me try the link againhttp://www.dakotapastels.com/pages/softpastels-holbein.aspx