Bitten By Pastels

I have been procrastinating. Avoiding the paint. Not ready to delve into the emotional depths required to step up to a blank canvas.

I have done the occasional prep work, getting the right red for a commission piece I am working on.

But its just prep work, I was avoiding the real work. Until last night.

Egging myself on, daring myself, compromising with the distractions, I began.

It was fun to play, just play, nothing serious. Combining paint, water, inks and the movement of new brushes.


I can’t tell you what it represents or how it feels. That’s for you to figure out.

I wasn’t done, I needed to do something bigger, I hungered for more. As I looked around, wondering if I was creatively ready to apply yellow sludge to the dragon (another story), I spied a small box of dry pastels.

In an instant, my world changed. My brain had been bitten by the absolute need to use these now. Not that I had any clue what that looked like.

I have had these pastels for over 10 years, since high school. I can’t remember what we did with them then but I remember I wasn’t very good. I never had that delicate ability to make angelic images our of the dust they leave behind. So I left them in my art box, the black, the brown and the white, just there.

As I submitted to this electric shock, I grabbed the pastels, a blank piece of paper and started scratching, scrawling and generally throwing pastel around the page. Not sure where to begin or where I was going.

As I scribbled like a 5 year old (the place my creative process always begins), I discovered something.

Dry pastels blend together in the most beautiful way, more delicately than oil pastels and more controlled than paint.

I sat on the floor blending, pushing, pulling and dragging until my hands were black with dust and I was filled with the satisfaction of creating something which had seemed impossible only 30 mins earlier.

photo-1Where does it take you?


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