Similar, soft pastel fruit

Jo Castillo

Supporting Member
This is cross posted in the Scavenger Hunts from Life as a sketch today.


Pastel 8 x 10 on Lux Archival paper

I'm trying out this new paper suggested by Karen Margulis. It is nice and supposed to hold 30 layers or so and accept wet underpaintings.

I did an alcohol under painting and sketched this cactus the other day for the Hunts.


Today I wiped it off and brushed with alcohol again.


This was my set up and start:


The paper:


The paper receives the pastel and holds on to it. It will be my paper of choice now when I don't use Pastelbord. I tried UArt and it rolls and buckles. Hard to drag a pastel across without getting a line on one of the bumps. This stayed flat with just the corners taped. I had to tape UArt down on all sides and it still didn't stay flat. Happy to find this! Thanks to Karen.
Wow nice one, Jo! You always do such great things on washed-off papers and I appreciate seeing the steps along the way. You even put the stripes on the towel, which really adds so much. Thanks for the review of the new paper. I haven’t tried it so it’s good to know what you think.
I love that wall behind the fruit. It's alive with light. The whole piece is lovely and I must say I like the looseness of application. I also like that bucket that you kicked. It was beautiful. It just needed a few lights and darks to really bring it alive.
Thanks, Donna. Glad you like the steps. I sometimes forget to take photos along the way. Especially something like this which is a "sketch" and done very quickly.

Enyaw, thank you. I really like the fruit in real life more than the photo. Both the fruit and the bucket started as sketches for the Hunt so that may be the reason they look a little loose. Ha. I do like painting from life better than from photos.

Bongo, appreciate you stopping by.
Oh my! These are wonderful. I LOVE the texture. The background on the first sends me soaring. I live for that kind of stuff. ♥️ All of it is incredible! ♥️
Nice work on the fruit! Very rich and textured. Is that the effect of many layers held by the paper or is that just the illusion you created with scumbling?
I've been hooked on PastelMat. LuxArchival is more expensive than that and seemingly less available. Have you compared the two? It's not your responsibility to be our testing lab, but if you have it would be good to know.
Was never sold on UART, by the way.
Bartc, thanks. Mostly scumbling on the fruit, it was a sketch and I got a bit carried away. Ha. I like PastelMat but I like a smoother look so this new Lux paper and Pastelbord are my favorites now. I also like Colourfix made by Daler-Rowney. It is durable, takes water and doesn't buckle. Harder to get here. It does come in a variety of colors which is nice so you don't need under painting. I was so disappointed in UArt. I have a whole pack of 9 x 12 sheets to ponder over. I reuse all paper for sketching, even MiTeintes by Canson. Just wipe it off and go again, already has the under painting. Ha.
Artyczar, thanks so much. I love color and light so try to get it down. I'm smiling that you noticed. Did you ever hear of Helen VanWyk in the old PBS programs? She had such good color sense and still life hints. She was an oil painter but the "rules" of painting apply to most paint and surfaces. She usually started with a gray surface. Her recordings are probably on YouTube.
What a beauty, Jo! I love seeing your setup in the photos and all your prep work. It led to this gorgeous result. ❤️
That's terrific work, Jo- and to have done it on reclaimed paper with such clean colours is great!

I should have a pack of Lux in my mailbox's locker- it's still way too windy here to go out in it. I'll pick it up tomorrow on the way to get some groceries.

And one of Santa's elves gave me some 'extra' Wallis pieces....
joe1lt, thank you. I'm smiling.

Triduana, thanks. Apples are so much fun. Tomatoes are a close second.

JStarr, thank you. I like working on a colored surface so wiping them off doesn't bother me, take a good photo and go. I hope you like the paper. I was very impressed. And some Wallis, lucky you. I have one piece of Wallis, I think it is 9 x 12. Been saving it for ??? Now would be a good time to compare, right??
Hi Jo. I have heard of Helen Van Wyk, but don't think I've seen her, so I will take a look on YouTube. Thanks! ♥️
heatherlynelle, thank you so much. Hope you get to try soft pastels, much more forgiving than the oil pastels. At least for me.
heatherlynelle, thank you so much. Hope you get to try soft pastels, much more forgiving than the oil pastels. At least for me.
My daughter and I tried the Mungyo ones I bought today for homeschool art! It was fun and she added her own flare of course 😉


  • 20240124_105603.jpg
    130.3 KB · Views: 6