|'Firefly Summer' 9x18 pastel ©Karen Margulis|
Have you tried the dusting technique? Here is an older blog article that describes the process. Enjoy!
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 this painting is an example of how I used dusting.
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!