Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Tips for Working with Yellow Pastels


'Canyon Color'          11x14       pastel         ©Karen Margulis
available $175
As if you needed another reason to add to your pastel collection!  How about Chamisa in bloom?  Can you tell I am enjoying my new Terry Ludwig set of Stunning Yellows? I always enjoyed using yellow. I like a lot of yellow subjects....flowers, sand, sky, sunlight!  But I always found yellow a challenging color to work with in pastel. I found it difficult to get it bright and sunny enough! I have some tips below but I have to say that this set of pastels is making the job easier!


Terry Ludwig's Stunning Yellows

Tips for working with Yellow

  • Start with orange. When building up a mass of yellow begin with darker values if possible. I like to start with the orange family then gradually build to the lightest and brightest yellows.
  • Use violets. Using the complement of yellow which is violet will help the yellows be more visually exciting. Surround yellows with violets (all kinds) or place them side by side for more interesting yellows.
  • Go darker. If your yellows don't seem bright enough try surrounding them with a darker value color. It will be like turning the lights on in a dark room!
  • Warm and cool. It helps to have a variety of warm orangey yellows and cooler lemon yellows in a mass of yellow.
  • Use Shouting marks. When you really want your yellow to stand out....press harder. A few hard edged marks will contrast nicely with softer marks. These shouting marks will stand out!


2.5 x 3.5 color study
"For most people, yellow is a happy color. It generally energizes, relieves depression, improves memory and stimulates appetite."  Shirley Williams

Read more about yellow from Shirley on her color website here

close up of the chamisa details
TIP: Consider splitting a set of pastels with a friend. It is easy enough to cut the pastels in half. International reader....Terry Ludwig ships internationally. Sharing with a friend will help with the shipping cost!



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