Let's Get Your Creative Juices Flowing!!!
Welcome to my FIRST oil pastel mixed media tutorial! If you were hanging out with me on YouTube last week, I tested out 4 different oil pastel brands to see which ones I like best, and why. Now, it's time to put them to the test for my first oil pastel project! That's right - I'll be learning about how this medium works right along with you!
Everything in today's FREE online art lesson is in "real-time," which means the video won't be sped up at all, and you'll see me work step-by-step throughout the entire project and art along with me!!
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Ready to Art Along With Me?
Awesome!! Head over to Awesome Art School to grab a FREE download of today's reference image and supply list.
Let's get started!! Make sure you click over to the video to watch how to draw this cute winter fox with me step-by-step in pencil. Isn't he adorable?!
Once your hands are protected and dry, it's time to bust out the oil pastels! I'm using an oil pastel brand called Mungyo because it was my favorite of the 4 brands I tested last week. I felt like Mungyos also were the best value, giving me a whopping 48 beautiful colors for just ~$12.
I started today's shading in the fox's hat, using a dark blue here, and anywhere else I noticed this color in my reference image. (Grab the reference here if you didn't get it yet).
Working from dark to light, I added some lighter blue next to my dark blue, and followed it up with some white for highlights.
I found the white oil pastel to be helpful in blending and "smooshing" the two blues together. If you're not sure how to do oil pastel blending, don't sweat it! I wasn't either! Just try some things to see what works for you.
Last week, I tested a few different oil pastel blending techniques, and decided I really liked using a blending stump and my finger. I felt using my finger to push colors together and into the paper helped me get solid coverage without leaving any white of the paper showing (which can be kinda tricky working on textured, cold press watercolor paper).
I wasn't a fan of the jagged edges everywhere so decided to see if colored pencils could help me define them. It actually worked pretty well and helped make the eges of my fox hat start looking more sophisticated.
HOT TIP! Oil pastels are messy, and will smear into your skin and subsequently ALL over your paper as you work, if you're not careful. Keep a paper towel or scrap paper under your wrist to avoid smudges where you don't want them.
Make sure you click over to the video to see how I layered darker colors to add depth and continued working with my dark blue colored pencil along the edges throughout for definition.
HOT TIP: When it comes to white highlights (which I'm obsessed with in EVERY medium I work with), DO leave the white of the paper showing where you want your whitest highlights to appear.
Alternatively, you can go to 01:14:11 in today's video to watch how I used light colored pencil to carve through the pastel layers where I wanted highlights. Seconds later, I tested one of my etching/embossing tools to attempt creating the look of animal fur. This turned out sooooo cool and is something I highly recommend!!
After I added some finishing touches with my colored pencils, I decided to test using actual white OIL PAINT with my polka dot tool to create the white highlights in the eyes (1:24:20 in the video). I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE how this turned out!!!
Don't those eyes jump just pop now?! Soooo cute!! I'm really happy I tried working with oil pastels and hope YOU enjoyed yourself too!
Are Oil Pastels Worth It?
I feel like there was definitely a decent learning curve trying oil pastels for the first time, but overall, it was super enjoyable!
Stay tuned for next week's oil pastel tutorial because I'll be painting a face in acrylics and shading it with oil pastels on top of the acrylics layer. I can't wait to see how this works!!
Want to Learn How to Mix Your Media
"Karen is flipping hilarious and she's very real...I like the way she teaches in a way that really gives you confidence, whether you're a beginner or advanced there's always something new to learn!"
- Elizabeth W.
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Karen, you are absolutely fabulous! You make me feel like I can draw anything. I have recently retired and finally have the time to do some of the art that I have loved since I was in school. I am really at the beginning of my art journey and I hope to learn as much as I can. Thank you for all you do.