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Thursday, February 26, 2015

New Pastels....Reviewing my New Unison Set

'In John's Meadow'              8x10                  pastel             ©Karen Margulis
I didn't need another stick of pastel. But I couldn't just walk away and leave this box of lovely colors. It needed me!  I went to the Art Materials Expo on Sunday with no intention to purchase pastels. I was on the hunt for new and interesting papers. (more on that soon) As I went up and down the aisles of art supplies I was drawn to the Richeson booth. There is where I found them.....a set of 18 Unison pastels called John's set.

My new set of Unison pastels 'John's Set'
I fell in love with the colors and their story. These were the last colors that Unison founder John Hersey developed before his death. They were beautiful. And with a nudge from my husband I bought the set. (how could I argue with him?)

I could have admired them in the box but I knew they needed to be used. So I bit the bullet and took off the wrappers and broke each stick in half. Now they were ready.

Ready to paint!
I toned a piece of Uart paper and imagined it filled with a Queen Anne's Lace Meadow. I got to work with my new pastels. I like Unison pastels. I have had a few small sets here and there and have enjoyed them. They are soft pastels but not as soft as my usual favorite Terry Ludwigs. They are certainly harder than Sennelier and Schminkes.  Where they shine is the colors. I love every single color! I especially love the subtle soft colors. Look at the wonderful blues and greens in this set!

They went on the Uart paper like butter. I was able to get nice smooth application and layers. I liked the sharp edge of the end of the broken stick to draw fine lines. I did need to add a few lights and a darker green to finish this painting but it as mostly done with my new set.

close up detail

I didn't need new pastels but adding a few more beautiful Unisons can't be a bad thing!  If you are a fan of Unison or just want to learn more I highly recommend a visit to their website....it's great!  They have a step by step look at the process they use to make the pastels...a must see! http://unisoncolour.com/our-story/the-pastel


Wendy Mould AFCA said...

I enjoyed my visit to your page. Those pastels do look like they have lovely colour. They certainly made your picture shine.

Bobbe's Community Food said...

I am in awe of your dedication to communication. Thanks for your review, the Richeson booth is one to just grab you and draw you in drooling :>) (I bought a set at the last IAPS) But you can always use more, especially when you are as productive as you are. Love your work!

robertsloan2art said...

Oh, now you've got me tempted again. I've been drooling at this set for some time. I have 120 Unison half sticks, but those soft colors are so very bright and vibrant. I know I'd use them often. Heh. Your turn to be an enabler this time!

Unison does a lot of good non-overlapping sets, one of the things I like about them. It's possible to get their full range piecemeal and their boxes are good too.

Lisa Graham Art said...

The colors in this are so gorgeous. Can't blame you for buying a new set of pastels. Love seeing your underpainting too. I hope you continue to enjoy your new supplies. Buying new supplies sure can inspire some good creating.

Anonymous said...

Gorgeous colors and painting ...
I also wonder how you find time for your fabulous communication..
Your teaching is priceless. Maybe thats why you help us for free ..
Thank you so much ..