Coloured pencils, pastels and other fun stuff: a quick tutorial

PASTELS are colourful little stumps of potential. Ours come paper-wrapped and just the right size for your hand. We carry two types:

1. SOFT PASTELS - pure pigment in a gum binder. Pretty much the most intensely-coloured art medium out there. Because they don't contain any hardeners or adherents, they're easily blended and re-worked -- but take care not to create too much dust. These really need a toothy surface to cling to -- see "GROUND" below. Finish with an acid-free spray fixative, and protect the finished piece behind glass.

2. OIL PASTELS - pure pigment in an oil-based binder. Smooth and buttery, they fill the grain of the backing substrate more densely than soft pastels do and don't require a fixative. Can be spread across a surface by the addition of a turpentine-type thinner. Also don't contain any hardeners or adherents -- so make sure to protect the finished piece behind glass.

COLOURED PENCILS can be found in a couple variations at the Gallery: premier soft-core (SO COLOURFUL) and water-soluble (so you can paint with them!). We carry both boxed sets and open stock -- and we've set our suppliers into a tizzy keeping up to our demand! "Adult colouring" really is more than a craze! 

PAPER means a lot more here than nearly anywhere else! We carry reams and reams of it, in different colours, tooths, weights... there's even fabric paper and water-proof, synthetic paper! We'll help you select the perfect sheet for your project. Try a dark or bright shade and watch your pastels pop!

GROUND is a neat product in a little jar... it goes on translucent to get nearly any backing pastel-ready. What it does is add tooth to your substrate. Just roll out a thin coat with a smooth, water-moistened roller and let it dry to a nice, sand-papery finish. Can be used on paper or something thicker -- Elizabeth likes to use spare pieces of matting! Always acid-free and available in every colour of the rainbow, they're a drool-worthy way to set up a pastel work. She might let your peruse her selection if you sweet-talk her real nice.