Author Archives: Richard McKinley

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What Is Impasto Painting?

One of the great advantages of oil paint, beyond its inherent richness of value and color depth due the pigment's suspension in oil, is the ability to apply it thickly--to create an impasto surface effect. The term impasto originates from the Italian word pasta, which means "paste." When associated to painting, it signifies a...

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Breaking Out of a Creative Rut

It's human nature for artist to look for answers—the so-called right way of doing things. When we see another artist’s successful paintings, we think that artist has a secret, and that if we had the same products and applied them in the same fashion, we too would produce masterful outcomes. While there's a degree...

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An Incremental Approach to Pastel Painting

As any artist that has worked with pastel can attest, pastel is an extremely versatile painting/drawing medium. The techniques used for its application are unlimited and easily reflect the personalities of those working with it. There are three major external components that affect application and appearance: surface tooth (how easily the surface grabs the...

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Organizing Pastels

The more pastels we acquire the more difficult it can become to keep track of them, especially once they are removed from original packaging and labels have been removed. Initially I tried to keep copious records of which pastels made up various working palettes. When there were only a couple of brands of pastels...

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The Legacy of Henri Roché Pastels

The World War I-era song, “How ‘Ya Gonna Keep ‘Em Down on the Farm? (After They’ve Seen Paree),” could also describe how many of us felt after first using pastels manufactured by the legendary brands of France: Sennelier, Girault and Henri Roché. By the 18th century in Europe, pastel was very much in fashion...

IAPS 2015

You’re Invited to a Pastel Family Reunion: IAPS 2015

On Monday, November 17, at 12pm EST (9am PST), registration will open for the 2015 International Association of Pastel Societies (IAPS) Convention. This marks the eleventh biennial convention to unite member pastel societies from around the country and around the globe for a celebration of all things pastel. The 2015 event will be hosted again...