This tutorial will discuss the basics for applying pastels. First and foremost, pastels musst be applied onto a flat coated surface. Pastels will not stick to a glossy surface, and not too wellto a matte surface, so prior to pastel weathering/shading, you need to apply a flat clear coat.
The pastels I use come in a couple of product types. Most often I use chalk pastels which can be purchased from your local art supply store like Michaels, Aaron Brothers, Dick Blick, etc. I simply use some sand paper or scrape the pastels into a paint tin for use. The higher grit the sand paper you use, the finer the pastel particles, so keep that in mind when you are preparing chalk pastels. Chalk pastels can also be mixed to create custom colors and shades.
The second type of pigments I use come in pre-packaged weathering kits from tamiya, and my video demonstration will utilize this type of pigments. These are basically glorified makeup kits. The third type of pigments are MIG powders.These are very fine pigments. These pigments, including chalk pastels can be mixed with a carrier such as turpentine for application. However, my typical method for applying the pastels is with a small brush (that I use only for pastel work)or sponge brushes (these are similar to make up applicators) and can be purchased in the makeup aisle at your local drug store.
The basic application is very simple, just pick up some of the pigments with your brush and apply it to the kit. You can also use the brush to paint on streaks such as rust streaks or flak damage. A sponge brush can be used to blend and feather different effects such as dirt, dust, or shading. Below is a 5 minute long video that shows the pastel application to the spiked end of a Kampfer’s shoulder.
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The following is the use of pastels for shading. With the chalk pastels you can custom mix the shade you want. And while the following steps details the use on a figure, the same technique can be applied to any type of model to shade the model. This is especially useful for folks who use spray cans and want to shade but do not have an airbrush to use the pre-shading technique.With the pastels, you can post shade.
The first step is to gathering the appropriate tools and have the properly prepared model. The figure I’m using has been flat coated and I have a paint tin with a custom mix of chalk pastels. I will be applying the pastels with a regular brush, then blending and featheringthe pastels with the sponge brush.
With all the tools gathered, I simply load the brush up with some pastels and apply it on to areas I want shaded.
Once I have all the pastels applied, I bring in the sponge brush to blend and feather the pastels.
Once all the pastels have been applied, I usually give a final clear coat to seal in the pastels. I tend to handle my kits often when traveling,so if the pastels are not sealed, they will rub off and handling will leave ugly finger prints. Clear coating will diminish the pastels effect toa certain degree, but you can always reapply more pastels and then continue to clear coat until you are satisfied with the result.