Pastels 101 - The Ultimate Soft Pastel Online Course

Welcome to

How to Pastel

the blog for soft pastel art lovers

How to Pastel is the go-to resource for improving your pastel painting!

Latest Edition

Recent Guest Artists

Andrew McDermott, "Warm Lights on a Cool Evening," 2023, pastel on UART Dark, 10 1/2 x 11 inches

Andrew McDermott – How To Loosen Up

Guest Andrew McDermott shares tips for spontaneity, textures, and maintaining a loose painterly style, all while having fun with your artwork.

Bill Cone pastel. This painting and the one below were painted a few years after my earlier ones. They were painted one after another, in the late afternoon.

Bill Cone – On Returning To The Same Location

I’m a huge fan of the pastel paintings by Bill Cone! Truth be told, I was slightly anxious about reaching out to ask him if he would consider contributing a guest post to HowToPastel. But

Notes from readers:

"...I am truly grateful for the work put into this newsletter. The content is always inspiring and helpful in my own journey with pastels...Thanks Gail for all your work!"
" ...always inspiring and helpful in my own journey with pastels..."
"I thoroughly enjoy reading your posts, from sharing your own work & process to the wonderful artists you feature! I always come away inspired!"
Beth K
"...Your spirit comes through your own love of the artists you highlight. Love this site so much."
"... when I see your email in my in-box, I feel excitement and joy that I can see and read about my own love of pastel painting through yours and your wonderfully-presented artists and work. Your spirit comes through your own love of the artists you highlight. Love this site so much.
Anita L. B.

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Recent Editions

Big shapes - Gail Sibley, “Tuscan View with Vineyard,” Unison Colour pastels on UART 320, 6 x 6 in. First layer

Paint The BIG Shapes First

Painting the big shapes first establishes the composition and value pattern. Big shapes give your work an underlying strength. Let’s look at five examples!

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Letting go of the outcome - a selection of Gail Sibley's 31in31 work!

Letting Go Of The Outcome

Letting go of the outcome of a painting can free you up to take risks. Basically, this mindset gives you creative freedom! Ruminations following the month of 31-pastels-in-31-days Challenge.

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Gail Sibley

Artist. Blogger. Teacher.

My love of pastel and the enjoyment I receive from teaching about pastel inspired the creation of this blog. It has tips, reviews, some opinions:), and all manner of information regarding their use through the years – old and new. Please enjoy!

Get exclusive tips, reviews, and resources directly from Gail.

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Pastels 101

Use this link if you bought the course AFTER Sept 2022

Use this link if you bought the course BEFORE Sept 2022

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