This book on pastel techniques is a unique A-Z directory of pastel painting techniques, together with guidance on how best to use them.
Many manuals on pastel painting take for granted the use of traditional soft pastels, a dry medium that provides the richness and variety of paint colours. Soft pastel is certainly the most versatile and widely used, but the modern range of materials include other pastel types that have their own specific.
The painting techniques described in the A-Z section of this art encyclopedia are related to the full pastel range - soft pastels, hard pastels, pastel pencils, oil pastels and water soluble pastels. The exact characteristics of all these media vary slightly between different manufacturers' ranges and you may find a particular brand that you prefer for its ease of handling or colour qualities, but it is quite possible to mix and match from different selections.
In the second part of this pastel techniques book, Themes, you can see the art techniques in context.
Illustrated with a gallery of paintings, as well as informative step-by-step demonstrations, this art techniques book shows how well-known artists apply their own knowledge and experience to the interpretation of a subject, whether landscape, portrait or still life.
This art techniques book is one of many art books available from the National Gallery, which include art history books, art exhibition catalogues and gift books.