Pastel Series #1: Onions {Beginner Tutorial}

Hi friends! I have been asked a lot lately when I was starting the pastel painting series. How about today!


This is a beginner tutorial and I urge you to use what you have before buying supplies. I will be doing both oil and chalk/soft pastel tutorials. Todays tutorial uses soft pastels but if all you have is oil try them. The exact set I am using can be purchased at Blitzy where I am an affiliate and I earn a small percentage of the sale if you buy through my link. Blitzy also has the Pentel set of 50 oil pastels that I use for $6.58. Please don’t feel obligated buy but thanks if you do:) Unfortunately I could not find the set of 72 Faber Castel pastels for what I paid for them a few years ago. 😦 I have also found SMI, Lowel Cornell and Sargent to be the same quality if you are looking for something cheaper that will work fine.


You can find the reference photo here at Paint my Photo. *I have heard from some of you that you are waiting for approval to join PMP and I reached out to the webmaster and he said that 60-70 new people are joining daily without problem. The only thing we can think of is that maybe people are trying to join at the old Ning site or maybe the confirmation emails are going to spam folders so you are not getting the welcome/approved email. Please check into that if you are having trouble accessing the site. It really is worth a visit and I am so grateful to all of the photographers who share their photos and the community of artists who share their paintings done from the photos.

So, what pastel team are you on? Oil or soft/chalk? I like both teams! Let me know in the comments which you prefer, if it is 50/50 oil to pastel preference I will alternate oil and soft pastels, if it is heavily one or the other I will make more tutorials on the preferred medium. I’m here for you and I like them both! Please invite your friends (remember the handy-dandy sharing buttons below) to join us on this pastel journey, you don’t have to spend much to get started and pastels are always ready to go when you are and easy clean up. Now go and enjoy your pastels! Happy crafting!



9 thoughts on “Pastel Series #1: Onions {Beginner Tutorial}

    1. Honestly, I like all types, since it is a dry media you can use thinner paper if you want. I used smooth matboard and it was fine for this because we did not add many layers, cardstock would also work for this. I also like Canson Mi-Tinets and Strathmore art paper because it is textured. You can use watercolor paper (esp the cheap stuff that is not great for watercolor, it will be great for pastel)it is such a forgiving medium:)


  1. So glad to see I can attempt this with oil pastels. That’s all I have right now. Those Faber Castell’s are a great deal on Blitsy, however. I watched the tutorial this AM and I’m going to take a stab at it this week sometime. Did my first watercolor this afternoon and loved the entire process!!!! Thank you, Lindsay!!


  2. Is there anything you can’t do? This is beautiful.
    For a real beginner–and this might come out in your subsequent videos on pastels–could you go through what you feel are the benefits of oil-based vs chalk pastels, pan pastels, and pencil pastels? I am especially interested in how to use pastels for backgrounds in pictures I do with colored pencils. I bought a set of pencil pastels, and now am not sure why I did!

    On another topic, are you familiar with Luminance colored pencils? Someone was raving about them. I had never heard of them; they are not inexpensive. Just wondered if you had used them?

    Thanks for sharing all of your knowledge!



  3. What a fun tutorial…just might get my pastel out…and have some fun…while I rewind this video…..thank you so much….love it..


  4. Love your updated look! Though I know from experience hair does get in the way whilst crafting on occasion !! But it does look nice!


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