Someone recently asked me this question. The pearlescent and iridescent pastels are so tempting but how can you use them in your paintings? Here is a post from the archives!
I didn't expect it. But in the end I loved it. That little piece of green pastel that somehow sneaks into my palette every once in awhile. It is a deceiving little guy. At a quick glance it looks like a nice mid value warm green. It is perfect for foliage. As soon as it is applied to paper it's true nature is revealed.
It shimmers! It is a like a gem. It is a pearlescent pastel and it makes me smile!
|a tiny piece of pearlescent pastel from Great American Artworks|
As I layer this soft buttery piece of pastel it leaves behind a subtle shimmer. The effect is more pronounced when the light hits the painting. The camera seems to intensify the effect. It is actually more subtle in real life.
I love this little green pastel but it has to be used in small amounts. Like too much jewelry or cologne....a little goes a long way and too much can be overwhelming. Here is a suggestion for using pearlescent pastels:
- It is the element of surprise that makes a touch of shimmer special. Rather than using a whole set of pearlescent colors in a single painting, break the pastels into smaller pieces. Now plant these pieces in your pastel box in the correct value and color area. The next time you reach for a certain color and value you may end up with a little gem. It will add a nice touch of shimmer just where you need it!