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Tuesday, June 17, 2014

10 Steps To Packing Pastels for Flying

'Quiet Time'          5x7         pastel          ©Karen Margulis
It's got to be lightweight, compact and comprehensive. I want to have everything I need to paint in my carry on bag.   That is what is important to me when I am flying with pastels. I prefer not to check my pastels due to potential rough handling but  I also want to be sure I can still paint even if my luggage is lost or delayed. 

I have found a great set up that fits my criteria....Stan Sperlak's Gogh Box. Regular blog readers have heard all about this box but I thought you might like to see what I put in the box and in my carry-on bag which is an Orvis Businessman's backpack.

Follow along as I load up my box!

Step one: I place the folding support board. This is foamcore and is folded in thirds. It will open larger with bulldog clips to keep it open.

 Step two: I place my pastel box. I am using a nice sturdy Great American Box. It is very lightweight wood and cardboard. I fit a combination of 60 Terry Ludwig and Great American pastels in the box. I secure the box with several rubber bands (actually headbands) just in case.

Step Three:  I place two narrow cardboard boxes that are filled with my Girault pastels and a few miscellaneous hard pastels and charcoal. When I set up to paint I will clip these open boxes to the sides of the Gogh Box. I use two layers of foam and rubber bands to secure the boxes....I shake and hear no movement so these pastels should stay intact.

Step Four: I use a small ditty bag for my clips and small bungees. I will use the bankers clips to hold my paper on my board when I paint. The bungee is to secure my backpack to the gook on my tripod for weight.

Step Five: I place the ditty bag on top of the big pastel box. I wedge my gray plastic viewfinder in between the pastel box and the side of the box....now the box cannot move around. It is wedged into the Gogh box.

Step Six: I roll up a small microfiber towel and wedge it int the side of the box. This towel has a loop so I can hook it onto my tripod and use it to wipe my hands. I do carry baby wipes but I can also use the towel to conserve wipes. The purple thing is a very small pad of paper that I will use for thumbnail sketches.

Step Seven:  I won't a;ways be painting so I will also carry a small 6x6 sketchbook. This sketchbook has recycled coffee bean paper which is a nice kraft paper color. I decided to use charcoal for my sketches. The pencils have a small carry case and all will go int my backpack.

 Step Eight: Packing paper! I gut a lot of paper ranging in size 4x4 up to 9x12 in Uart, Wallis and Pastelmat. I am loading an 8x10 and 5x7 Itoya portfolio book with papers and putting these into my backpack. The rest of the paper will go into my suitcase. You can also see a clear pouch in the photo. This holds watercolors, brushes, tape extra clips and rubber bands. Since these items aren't essential they will go in my suitcase.

Step Nine: I place the Gogh box in the backpack. Behind the box is a pocket and I slip my Itoya paper portfolios in this pocket along with my ipad. I can also fit my comfort items, snacks, sunglasses,chargers in the other pockets. This is a GREAT backpack!

Step Ten:  The two pouches with paper and miscellaneous supplies in my suitcase. The tripod does fit in an outer pocket of the backpack but it is a tight fit so I prefer to put it in my large purse (really a tote bag) which I will also carry on. In this tote I have my camera, jacket and a change of clothes (just in case of a lost bag)

Today's painting is on Pastelmat with Girault pastels.


mi fasola said...

thanks for sharing the packing process!

Susan Williamson said...

I love this set up! And who would have thought to use headbands? Thanks for taking the time to write so clearly. And take so many photos.

Tim Moore said...

a place for everything and everything in it's place..I love being organized..wonderful job and wonderful post..

Judy Baker said...

Thank you for all your useful info and the time you take to share it. Love your marsh painting!

PemaWangmoGilman said...

So helpful! Thanks for taking time to share and taking so may photos. Your generosity is A-1. Have a wonderful adventure in Iceland!

Cindy Stewart said...

Thank you for this information! I have struggled to travel with pastels and had switched to colored pencils. I miss my pastels at home! This will inspire me to try packing pastels again.