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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?
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.
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.
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!
Or get all three of our chalk pastel ebooks for a special price: Art for All Ages bundle
Following is a list Nana’s chalk pastel tutorials:
Classic Children’s Books
- My Blue Boat (Teaching Art with Multiple Ages)
- Pete the Cat
- Lentil – shadows and facial expressions
- Cat in the Hat (acrylic tutorial)
- Peter Pan (acrylic tutorial)
Flower Chalk Pastel Tutorials
Birds Chalk Pastel Tutorials
Nature and History Chalk Pastel Tutorials
- To The Woods: Henry David Thoreau
- Lily Pad
- a Tornado in Pastels
- Tree Silhouette
- Harvest Moon (Night scene)
- Tree Reflection
- Fall Leaf
- Night blooming cereus
- Weather + bonus
- Summer Tree
- Medieval Castle
Food and Fruits Chalk Art Tutorials
- Mug of hot chocolate
- Apple or Pumpkin – you decide!
- Fruit Bowl
- Strawberries and Bananas
- Macaroni and Cheese- Heart of the Matter’s April 2011 Digital Magazine
- Fudge Pie + recipe at Heart of the Matter
- Christmas tree in the snow
- Christmas ornament
- Old Shed in the Snow
- An Easter Cross in Pastels
- Easy Art Projects for Fall
- At the Beach
- a Path to the Beach - Nana’s first lesson in pastels, the one that began our love of chalk pastels
- All Blue (Ocean Scene)
- Beach Umbrellas
- Sailboat at Sunset
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!
- Master Artist - a story of Nana and a tour of artwork in her house
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.
- Nana is a Master Artist in pastels. Pastels are an easy, forgiving medium. Fun for children and adults alike!
- Visit our Art Tutorials Pinterest board.
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