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Painting Technique: Iridescent Oil Pastels as a Painting Background

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The background for this linoprint was created with a gold, iridescent oil pastel.
Photo of gold background for painting or printmaking using iridescent oil pastels

The gold background for this linoprint was created using an iridescent oil pastel, blended smooth.

Photo © 2011 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.

One of the problems with gold paint can be getting an even, smooth finish. So for this linoprint, I used an iridescent oil pastel which I then blended smooth with a finger. Another advantage was that I didn't have to wait for it to dry before printing the linocut over it.

Note: I used oil-based relief-printing ink to print over the oil pastels, not a water-based ink. The pastel will shift and rub off a bit if you touch it, so the artwork would need to be protected under glass. Using this technique for a one-off card, I'd use one of those folded formats where there's effectively a mount on top of the image. Get the lighting right, and the iridescent pastel photographs beautifully, so making prints from an artwork is definitely an option.

Buy Direct: Sennelier Iridescent Oil Pastels
My Review of Sennelier Oil Pastels

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