EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Coloured Paper

Students experiment with multiple ways to blend, smudge, layer, scratch and mix colours using oil pastels on coloured construction paper. 

Required Time

40 Minutes

Grade Level

Grade 3 to Grade 10

Subject

Art Techniques
Language Arts
Visual Arts

Vocabulary

Materials

Crayola Construction Paper - 22.9 cm x 30.5 cm (9" x 12") Crayola Oil Pastels - 16 Count Crayola Washable Glue Sticks Toothpicks Paper Towels

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Steps

EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Coloured Paper - Step One

Step One

  1. Choose one colour paper for the background.
  2. Tear small shapes of each of the other colours and glue them onto your background paper.
  3. Make sure some of the background colour is visible.
EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Coloured Paper - Step Two

Step Two

Experiment

  1. Use all the colours in your oil pastel box in one way or another.
  2. Experiment with ways to apply colour and texture. 

Applying Pressure

  1. Draw with the oil pastel and deliberately change the pressure to get different effects.
  2. Wiggle your wrist as you change the pressure.
EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Coloured Paper - Step Three

Step Three

Blending

  1. Choose two or more colours.
  2. Colour a section with the darkest colour.
  3. Colour on top of the first layer with the next lightest colour.
  4. Press hard to mix the colours.
  5. Or use your fingers to blend the colours together.
EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Coloured Paper - Step Four

Step Four

Scumbling

  1. Use the tip of the oil pastel.
  2. Draw lightly with a loose, rounded, scribbling motion.
  3. Scumble directly on the paper or lay down a base coat colour first and then scumble over it.

Laying Flat Colour

  1. Remove the wrapper from the oil pastel.
  2. Lay the pastel flat on the paper and move it across the surface.
  3. Change the pressure to get different effects. 
EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Coloured Paper - Step Five

Step Five

Cross-Hatching

  1. Draw a series of thin lines beside each other.
  2. Draw a new set of lines on an angle over top of the first set of lines.
  3. Use the same colour for each set of lines or change colours for a different effect. 

Stippling

  1. Draw a series of dots beside each other.
  2. Vary the spaces between the dots to change the intensity of the colour.
  3. Draw different coloured dots among the first set to shift from one colour to the next.
EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Coloured Paper - Step Six

Step Six

Mark Making

  1. Use the tip of the oil pastel.
  2. Explore ways to make different marks.
  3. Try dots, straight, curved, hatched and scribbled marks. 

 

EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Coloured Paper - Step Seven

Step Seven

Sgraffito (Scratching into the oil pastel)

  1. Apply thick layers of oil pastel.
  2. Use a toothpick or other pointed tool to scratch into the layers of oil pastel.
  3. Create a variety of patterns.

 

 

EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Coloured Paper - Step Eight

Step Eight

Stencil

  1. Use a cut out shape or leaf as a stencil.
  2. Hold the stencil firmly in place.
  3. Colour over the edge of the stencil onto the paper, or colour on the shape and smear the pastel onto the paper with your finger.
  4. Remove the stencil.
EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Coloured Paper - Step Nine

Step Nine

Rubbing

  1. Place a piece of paper over a textured surface.
  2. Remove the wrapper from the oil pastel.
  3. Lay the oil pastel flat on the paper and move it across the textured surface.
  4. Change the pressure to get different effects.
EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Coloured Paper - Step Ten

Step Ten

  1. Fill the empty spaces with more colour and texture until the entire page is coloured in.
  2. Glue your finished experiment sheet into your sketchbook.
  3. Write your comments about 4 sections of the design.
    - What do you like best about this section? Why?
    - How would you use the techniques in this section in an artwork?
    - What effect does the coloured paper have on the way the oil pastel looks?

     

Learning Goals

Students will be able to:

  • create interesting effects using oil pastels in at least 10 different ways;
  • build on their own and others’ discoveries to generate new ideas;
  • explain their process;
  • express opinions about the works; 
  • support their ideas with evidence found in the works.

Extensions

​Have students:

  • work collaboratively over a few weeks to build a class artwork;
  • add to large sheets of construction paper displayed on a bulletin board until they have filled it with interesting and varied oil pastel techniques;
  • label various parts of the drawings with interesting names and titles like signposts throughout the works;
  • post their explanations of how they came up with the names/titles on the drawings;
  • add other collage materials to create a mixed media artwork;
  • give the work a title.

Prepare

  1. Place students into groups so they can share the oil pastels.
  2. Spread newspaper on tables for easy clean up.
  3. Provide paper towels and toothpicks for each student/group.
  4. Make a sample.

Introduction

  1. Explain what oil pastels are:
    drawing tools like a crayon and chalk pastel combined
    - the pigment is mixed with an oil and wax binder that doesn't dry in the air
    - eventually they do harden, but it takes a long time so pictures made with oil pastels always seem a bit oily to touch
    - oil pastels can be used in a lot of different ways.
  2. Ask how many students have used oil pastels before, and what they have made with them. 
  3. If students have experience with oil pastels ask them to demonstrate a technique they have learned.
  4. Explain that today's class is for experimenting with the oil pastels so students will have an idea how to get the most out of them.
    - it's a time to play with ideas and see what happens
  5. Introduce the challenge.

Activities

The Challenge

  1. Create interesting effects using oil pastels in at least 10 different ways.
  2. Push yourself to generate new ideas.
  3. Fill the entire page with colour and techniques.
  4. Explain your process.
  5. Express opinions about your own and others' works. 
  6. Support your ideas with evidence found in the works.

The Process

  1. Make sure everyone understands the challenge.
  2. Establish success criteria with your students. For example,
    I know I am successful when I have:
    - created interesting effects with oil pastels
    - used oil pastels in 10 different ways
    - filled the page with colour

    - explained what I did
    - kept the paper in good condition
  3. Guide students through the steps outlined in this lesson plan.
  4. Observe students as they work. 
  5. Provide individual assistance and encouragement.
  6. Encourage them to work with colour combinations and textures to get unique effects. 

Sharing

  1. Have students work in pairs or small groups.
  2. Ask them to:
    - Compare the experiments and describe to each other what they did to get certain effects.
    - Describe feelings the works evoke.
    - Discuss challenges they may have had and how they solved them.
    - Discuss how doing these experiments might help them if they were creating an artwork.
  3. Ask them to tell how they felt about doing this project.

Assessment

  1. Observe students as they work – thoughtful focus, discriminating, seeking more information, elaborating, experimenting
  2. Observe students as they discuss the experiments – active listening, insightful contributions, supporting ideas with evidence found in the artwork and from personal experience.
  3. Use a checklist to track progress. (Downloads - OilPastelsColouredPaper_tracking.pdf)
  4. Have students glue their finished experiment sheet into their sketchbook/journal.
  5. Have them write comments about 4 sections of their design.
    - What do you like best about each section? Why?
    - How would you use the techniques in each section in an artwork?
    - What effect does the coloured paper have on the way the oil pastel looks?
    - What stands out in your mind about using oil pastels?