What is pastel?

Elena Melnichenko
Elena Melnichenko
February 24, 2015
What is pastel?

The word "pastel" (pronounced [te]) is especially familiar to artists and people associated with painting and design. In the field of artistic creativity, the term “pastel” describes special pencils, the drawing technique itself, as well as finished products.

Let us consider what pastel is, in more detail.

Meaning of the word

This concept comes from the Latin "pasta", which means literally "dough." There are several definitions of the word "pastel":

  • soft colored crayons for painting (there are three types - “dry”, oil and wax pastel);
  • works of fine art made by such chalk;
  • the technique itself, which is used to draw such pictures. In such a technique, famous artists worked, for example, E. Manet, O. Renoir, E. Degas, E. Delacroix, A. G. Venetsianov, I. I. Levitan, V. A. Serov, and many others.

As can be seen from the three definitions, the concept of "pastel" is used for one direction of painting and graphics (today, by the way, pastel refers specifically to graphics). Nowadays pastel instruments are more often produced in the form of pencils without rims or in the form of crayons.Chalk bars are cut in a round or square shape.

To use this painting tool and this unique technique, you need a special rough surface. This requirement is necessary so that the paint from the crayons could catch on and stay on the surface.

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