Although I paint with different mediums, the medium that FUELS my LOVE for color most is Pastel!
Pastel is pure pigment and must not be confused with colored chalk. Chalk is a limestone substance impregnated with dyes.
Pastel is the most permanent of all media, when applied to conservation ground and properly framed. There is no liquid binder in pastel to cause the pigment to darken, fade, yellow, crack or blister with time. The name Pastel comes from the French word “Pastische” because the pure, powdered pigment is ground into a paste, with a small amount of gum binder, and then rolled into sticks.
Historically, Pastel can be traced back to the 16th century. Edgar Degas (1834-1917) was the most prolific user of Pastel as well as its champion. His paintings are in display at Museums today and are as brilliant as ever. No restoration needed, ever!
A particle of Pastel pigment seen under a microscope looks like a diamond with many facets; therefore, Pastel paintings reflect light like a prism. No other medium has the power of color or stability of Pastel. It does not oxidize with the passage of time which give Pastel paintings the brilliant color and stability.
Today, Pastel painting enjoys the stature of oil and watercolor as a major fine art medium. Many renowned living artists have distinguished themselves in Pastel and have enriched the art world with this beautiful medium.