Students make marks on white paper with all colours of oil pastel and then use all colours of their watercolour paints to cover their marks. 

Required Time

40 Minutes

Grade Level

Grade 1 to Grade 10


Art Techniques
Visual Arts


cool colours curved line oil pastel warm colours watercolour paint zigzag


Crayola® Oil Pastels Crayola Marker & Watercolour Paper – 22.9 cm x 30.5 cm cm (9” X 12”) Watercolour Sets Paint Brushes Paper Towels



Step One

Draw a variety of marks on the paper. Use all the colours of oil pastel in the box.


Step Two

Paint over the marks using some of every colour in the paint box.

EXPLORING OIL PASTEL – Resist - Step Three

Step Three

  1. Notice the effects of the paint and oil pastel.
  2. How the different colour combinations make you feel? 

Step Four

Add the completed painting to your sketchbook.

Learning Goals

Students will be able to:

  1. Create a variety of marks using oil pastels;
  2. Use watercolour paint to create resist paintings;
  3. Compare the effects of different colour combinations in resist paintings;
  4. Build on their own and others’ discoveries to generate new ideas;
  5. Explain their process;
  6. Express opinions about the works; and
  7. Support their ideas with evidence found in the paintings.


  1. Display a large sheet of painting paper on a bulletin board and have students add marks on it for a week. Label it Add a Mark.  Once enough marks have been added set the paper out and allow them to add patches of watercolour paint to create a large resist painting.
  2. Tear the completed painting into smaller pieces and give each student one piece. Have them glue this piece into their sketchbook (or onto a 22.9 cm x 30.5 cm (9” x 12”) paper. Ask them to use their imagination to extend the patch into a drawing of something wonderful.


  1. Place students in groups so they can share the oil pastels and paints.
  2. Spread newspaper on tables for easy clean up.
  3. Provide paper towel, water containers and paintbrushes for each student/group.
  4. Make a sample.


  1. Explain what oil pastels are - a drawing tool 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 how they have used them. 
  3. Explain that because oil and water don't mix if we paint over oil pastel the marks will still be visible. This technique is called oil pastel resist.
  4. Explain that today's class is for experimenting with the oil pastels and watercolour paints. It's a time to play with ideas and see what happens.
  5. Introduce the challenge.


The Challenge

  1. Create lots of different marks using all the colours in the oil pastel box.
  2. Push yourself to generate new ideas.
  3. Use all the colours in the watercolour box to paint over the oil pastel marks.
  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. Show your sample and explain the challenge. 
  2. Demonstrate the technique. 
  3. Encourage students to work with colour combinations and textures to get unique effects. 


  1. Have students work with a partner or in small groups. Ask them to:
    Discuss the effects of the paint and oil pastel.
    Talk about how the different colour combinations make them feel. 
    Compare the exercises and describe to each other what they did to get certain effects.
    Consider how doing this exercise might help them if they were creating a picture.


  1. Observe students as they work. Ask questions about process and discoveries.