Pastels Plus Links to Tutorials

Welcome to our Hodgepodge free listing of chalk pastels, acrylics and video art tutorials for all ages. This list of free tutorials is always being updated. Rather than 50, we now have 100+ free art tutorials!  Please scroll down for a list of printable lessons. Click on each link to view and print individually…

We love pastels. Nana has taught us to appreciate how beautiful and easy it is to use them. We even keep them close so we can use them for our nature journal entries. I’ve had a few questions about what pastels our children use and where to purchase them. So, I went to the expert – Nana! Below is a suggested list of resources. And further down is our list of chalk pastel and acrylic lessons.

What type of chalk pastels to use?

The pastels our children use (above) are Rembrandt. Nana says they are very good ones to start out with and are available at most art supply stores. She thinks you can even get them at your local Michael’s Craft Store.

Handmade by Terri Ludwig. Nana says these are the “most precious to use.” Our children used a few select sticks of Nana’s to create a Tornado in Pastels. Nana’s Terri Ludwig set is pictured below. Beautiful!

Dick Blick. This art supply company makes their own set of pastels you can order online. A set of 48 colors is only $10.39. Click over and watch online videos. A great resource!

Nana’s advice – start small: The student grade Alphacolor set is a good starter for $10.00. This set includes the basic colors to try out. These colors can be layered to achieve whatever color the student wants to use.

What type of paper is best for chalk pastels?

Our very first pastel pictures were made on a roll of newsprint we had close by. But for the colors to blend well, good paper is suggested. Nana says a pad of Canson paper is available at Michael’s.

How do I store chalk pastels? How do I clean them?

The small set of student starter pastels come in a plastic sleeve for storage. The large bin pictured at the top of the post Nana purchased at Michael’s a few years ago. She says, “I think it was supposed to be used to store beads in for necklace and bracelet making – when that was all the rage. It just looked like it would be good for pastels so I bought it.”

After we’d been using pastels for about two years, Nana gifted us with a wooden box with drawers for storage.

Details in her post, Soft Chalk Pastels: Storage and Cleaning. We tuck our pastel set under the kitchen table for easy access.

Nana’s advice for beginning with pastels

There is no need to make a large pastel purchase or to get a storage container until you have tried pastels, are certain the children will enjoy using them and if mamas want to put up with the mess. Remember, pastels are messy. Blessedly messy. We keep a package of baby wipes close by when we use them.

Where do you store finished pictures?

Honestly, our house is decorated with children’s pictures. You’ll find them on the chalkboard, the refrigerator and adorning the walls.

You can also find finished pastel pictures:

  • in our nature journals – the finished pictures just rub off a bit on the back of the next picture.
  • in a binder – my daughter created a binder for finished pictures. She puts a bit of wax paper between each one.

Hodgepodge Art for All Ages Curriculum

A Simple Start in Chalk Pastels

Many of our readers wanted our tutorials in one handy spot. As requested, we put our chalk pastel tutorials in ebook form for you – including video tutorials! Easy to view on a computer, iPad or Kindle. Easy to print. More details here on A Simple Start in Chalk Pastels. Now you can have a master artist teach your family – Just add paper and chalk pastels!

Art for all ages-complete-bundle-395x310

Or get all six of our chalk pastel ebooks for a special price: Art for All Ages Complete Curriculum bundle

100 Free Art Lessons at Hodgepodge - Art for All Ages - Chalk Pastels & Acrylics

Following is a list of Free Hodgepodge chalk pastel tutorials:

Art for All Ages - 10 Days of Tips and Tutorials

Art for All Ages: 10 Days of Tutorials and Tips

Chalk Pastel Techniques for All Ages at Hodgepodge

Chalk Pastel Techniques – How To Videos

Subscribe to the Hodgepodge YouTube channel with all video tutorials

Chalk Pastel Techniques – a round up of techniques

The {Very Few} Must Have Supplies for Chalk Pastel Art (with video)

Birthday Cake Video Art Tutorial with Chalk Pastels at Celebratory Birthday Cake Video Tutorial!

I Am An Artist - Chalk Pastel Art Tutorial

Classic Children’s Books

Toothless Chalk Art Tutorial at Hodgepodge

Art Appreciation Chalk Art Tutorials

Art Appreciation and Art History

Chalk Pastel Box Art Tutorial at Hodgepodge

flower pastel tutorials

Flower Chalk Pastel Tutorials

Bird Chalk Art Tutorials

Birds Chalk Pastel Tutorials

Nature and History Chalk Pastel Tutorials

Lavender Chalk Pastel Art Tutorial

Flag Chalk Pastel Art Tutorial at

fruit pastel tutorials

Food and Fruits Chalk Art Tutorials


Easter Crown of Thorns Chalk Pastel Art Tutorial

Baseball and Bat Chalk Pastel tutorial at

Fall Art for All Ages - Free Tutorials at Hodgepodge

Football Chalk Pastel Art Tutorial at Hodgepodge

Free Summer Art Lessons at Hodgepodge

Free Summer Art Lessons

Hermit Crab Chalk Pastel #Art Tutorial

Swimming Creatures and Marine Life

Bruce the Shark Chalk Art Tutorial at Hodgepodge

Our Free Art Tutorials and Lessons Pinterest Board

Follow Tricia’s board Free Art Tutorials and Lessons on Pinterest.

Simple Afternoon Art Projects

Free Acrylic Lessons

I thought that we could take a break from our wonderful pastel lessons and go explore a new medium…acrylic paint!  I have painted with acrylics for many years…using them to paint wall murals, tee-shirts…the paint is a very forgiving medium.  You can make a small investment at your local craft store and get enough basic, primary colors to mix any other color or hue that your heart desires!

Nana’s Story

For us, using pastels is sheer joy. We’ve found they are great for making nature journal entries.

“Ok, I have to tell you, I am NOT an art teacher… not even close.  The most my kids ever do with art is maybe a hands on history lesson with coloring pages and some minor drawing.  I have now ventured into teaching them art WITH NANA! We completed lesson one in pastels this morning, and it was fabulous!  She is inspiring a love of art in a family that knows nothing of it!  Thank you so much for sharing your precious mother with us all.” ~ Lori Lange, homeschool mom of 5 @ Abnormal Herd

The practical aspects of a mess: We always have baby wipes close by to wipe hands. We wear something we don’t mind getting stained or don a smock.

My guest post at Homegrown Learners

Don’t miss any free art lessons!  Subscribe to Hodgepodge and receive our free subscriber-only art tutorials.


  1. 1


    Hi Tricia,
    We’re trying to access Nana’s wonderful pastel tutorials but are getting an error message.
    Your help is appreciated – we haven’t done the last two and are missing them : )
    Thank you.

  2. 4


    Thank you! I just started teaching pastels to my son. I have taken so MANY art classes, but I forget how it is in the beginning. So I forget where to start.

  3. 6

    Leah Adamowicz says

    Tricia- the arts and crafts stores sell a matte finish/ satin spray to affix the pastels to the paper and then they won’t smudge! Sorry I can’t remember exactly what it’s called but an employee should be able to help you.

    • 7


      Thank you for mentioning this Leah! I remember we talked about this in one of Nana’s tutorials. Yes, there is a fixative available. And it will preserve your pictures well. You do have to take your picture outside to spray it as it is a strong smelling substance. Nana does frame some of hers and covers the picture with glass. That is an option as well. But mainly, we have ours all around as I described above. Thanks again Leah :)

  4. 8

    StacyO says

    Thank you for these wonderful tutorials! I’ve already used one with my children and they thoroughly enjoyed it. Thank you!!

    • 9


      Stacy – It makes me smile to read comments like yours. For you are joining in a love of ours – and that is exactly why we share this love of art! Thank you for your kind words.

  5. 10


    We’re making our summer fun list, and I am bookmarking this page so we can enjoy some of your tutorials this summer! Thanks for sharing:)

  6. 12



    Really can’t thank you enough for these tutorials. We did the second one this week. Sprout, who was the most resistant last week, was begging to do more. I feel so good finally being able to indulge an artistic passion and–even better–sharing it with my kids. Thank you, and thank Nana!

    • 15


      Hi Mary, Thanks for your interest. The original pastel nest picture is not for sale. However, you may contact me if you are interested in talking more about one like it :)

  7. 16

    Sarah says

    How generous of you to share Nana’s talent! We have completed our first pastel, a Path to the Beach, and the kids loved it. I especially appreciate you showing everyone’s artwork… my littlest doesn’t feel so little when he sees your little ones’ drawings. The kids are making a “Daddy date” to try another picture. Thank you so much!

    • 17


      Sarah – wonderful! Thank you for stopping back by to let me know. The path to the beach is one of our very favorites. So glad your children enjoyed it as much as we do :)

  8. 18

    Caroline Gill says

    I cannot link up to the ‘tree” lesson – no. 6. It says the site is closed. Please advise what to do….
    Thanks for these great lessons…. we also feel we have finally discovered art we can actually do!
    Hooray for Nana and pastels!

    • 19


      Thanks Caroline! You have caught one lesson I haven’t pulled from the old site. Will put that in the cue for next time and will aim to get it up ASAP. I appreciate your patience.

      • 20

        Caroline Gill says

        Thanks so much for your speedy response…. No’s 10 and 20 are also problematic – while you are at it! :)
        My kids love these lessons every week!

  9. 21


    We just completed our first lesson, “A Path to the Beach”. The boys (7 & 10, along with mommy) enjoyed every minute of it. Thank you so much for this fun resource. This will be our first time doing art at home during our school year.

    Blessings to you!
    Gabreial & her boys!

  10. 23


    We started using pastels after I read a different post of yours. Thank you! Although messy, they are awesome and our family is really enjoying them! This post will be a valuable resource as well. Blessings!

  11. 26


    I’m so excited I found your art lessons. I’m going to go buy us a set of pastels ASAP! Is there any order that Nana would suggest we go in, since we’re just starting out, or would we be fine just picking a lesson and going with it? Basically, I just wonder if each lesson builds upon the last or not.

    Thank you!!
    Elizabeth recently posted..Forever Nigella: Packed Lunch StarsMy Profile

  12. 28

    Bruce Jennings says

    The art is wonderful.
    I’m looking for dry pastels not oil based.
    Where do I find them and what should I ask for?
    Please help.

    • 29


      Hi Bruce – I have a few links available to order online, above. But you can also go to your local arts and crafts supply store. We have Michael’s and Hobby Lobby here. And you would ask for chalk pastels. Hope that helps!

  13. 31


    Thank you for this very lovely & encouraging post…there’s just so much raw beauty in pastels and the art they help create..I love crafting and drawing and painting but I’d been intimidated all this time by pastels…your post has encouraged me to visit the local stationery stop to try out some pastels for myself and maybe for my daughter too!

    • 32


      Oh this is just what we are trying to share with this post and these lessons. That chalk pastels are not intimidating at all. All ages can enjoy them. Please do give them a try!

  14. 33

    RaShell S says

    Hi! This sounds like so much fun! I have 5 children. Four of them would love this (the baby would just eat the chalks).

    If I have 4 children, ages 4-13 who would like to work on lessons at the same time, how many sets of chalk would you recommend? Do I need one set for each child?

    Thank you! I am so excited about this. I know my children will be too!

    • 34


      Thanks for your question RaShell! Here is Nana’s answer: “For beginning artists, no matter what the ages are, one set of shared chalks will suffice. That way, if they do not like pastel art, then all you have done is pay for one set. Let the student decide if they want to continue before you invest!”

      I hope you all enjoy the pastel tutorials. And be sure to share photos of your finished art work. I’d love to showcase them on my Pinterest board You can send them to me by clicking the little mail icon at the top right of the site :)

      • 35

        RaShell S says

        Thank you so much! I appreciate your time. I can’t wait to get them started. :)

        Also, are these tutorials different than the ones in A Simple Start? Does the Simple Start have video tutorials for every lesson?

        Thank you again!

  15. 36

    Edith says

    I have just found you! I am so excited to share these wonderful lessons with my children.
    One question about storing the masterpieces they will create. Do you think it would harm the pictures to spray them with hairspray? I was a preschool teacher many years ago. That is how we kept the chalk from rubbing off on the children on the way home and it also kept the pictures from getting messed up.
    Thank you for sharing your gift with us.

    • 37


      Edith – that is just what we recommend! An aerosol hairspray (rather than a pump style) – very lightly. If you spray too heavily the paper will curl. Please enjoy!

  16. 38

    Sheri' says

    It was too weird that I signed onto Facebook just now and found a link to this page. I literally just finished cleaning up my son’s first attempt with pastels. :-) He enjoyed it, as did my twenty-one month old with his fingerpaints. Ive been thinking about putting him in art lessons or getting a curriculum, hes just recently started expressing a real interest in drawing-I think I’ll start with this now! Thanks!

  17. 39

    Janet Gordon says

    We finally bought a box of chalk pastels and my kids started with your Angry Birds inspiration. They loved it! And I did, too! They grabbed their plush Angry Bird animals as models and really enjoyed the process of creating. Their ages are a newly turned seven and an almost five (near Christmastime). They were surprised at the forgiving nature of the chalk pastels and I can foresee lots of art time being added to our homeschool. Thank you and thank Nana, too!

    • 40


      Janet – how FUN to start with Angry Birds! I am so happy to hear about this and about many more happy art times for you in the future! I agree, chalk pastels are for very forgiving and because of that so many have found success with this medium. Thanks!

  18. 41

    Tanya says

    Sorry, I did not understand how to get to the 50 Free art lessons. I pinned it, I sent it from Pinterest to a friend (because it said share and enjoy), but I still don’t see how to start a first lesson.
    Please help!
    Thank you in advance, it looks like an awesome resource! Can’t wait!

  19. 43


    Hi there!

    I found out about this through one of the billions of email lists I’m on, LOL. I’m just wondering a few things:

    1) The pic at the top as “50 Free lessons” and then “Scroll down for the printable lessons.” I’m confused about that as I don’t seem to see any printable lessons…?

    2) Are the links in this post the “50 Free lessons”?

    3) Will these links continue to stay live, or are they only live for a certain period of time?

    Thanks ladies!! :)
    Tasha recently posted..Freebie February, Apologia awesomeness……and gobs more!My Profile

    • 44


      Hi Tasha- thanks for your comment. There are actually well over 50 free lessons now :) and if you (1) click on each lesson, you can then click the green ‘print friendly’ button (amongst the sharing buttons at the bottom of each post) to print. This will turn the post into an automatic download/pdf. You can choose to print the lesson with/without photos (2) yes! (3) The vast majority of the links are live, though some are subscriber freebies
      I hope you enjoy!

  20. 45

    Kim says

    What a special way to share your family’s love for art with others. Thank you. I’m having a difficult time finding the link to the volcano art. Could you please clarify how to access it? Thank you.

    • 46


      Hi Kim – Thank you! The volcano tutorial was a subscriber only bonus. If you are a subscriber, then feel free to send me an email via the contact us tab above and we will see what we can do :)

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