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Look inside Beginner's Guide to Painting with Oil Pastels
How to begin Oil Pastels
  • Publisher: Search Press
  • Edition: BC Paperback
  • Publication: 08 October 2018
  • ISBN 13/EAN: 9781782215509
  • Stock: 50+
  • Size: 216x280 mm
  • Illustrations: 500
  • Pages: 96
  • RRP: £12.99
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Beginner's Guide to Painting with Oil Pastels


Projects, techniques and inspiration to get you started by Tim Fisher (Author)

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Book Description

'If you thought oil pastels were just something for children, prepare to think again.' The Artist

'...look on in wonder as Tim shows you how you can use this neglected but simple medium to create real works of art...Just open this book at random and you'll be hooked.' Paint Magazine

Learn to paint with oil pastels in this colourful, accessible book for newcomers to the medium. Tim Fisher demonstrates how to use the oil pastels on their own, or in conjunction with acrylic inks and paints, and watercolours, on a variety of surfaces, to create beautiful paintings that will maintain their vibrancy for years to come.

The Beginner's Guide to Painting with Oil Pastels features six full step-by-step projects covering a variety of subjects including animal portraits, street scenes, boats and harbours, buildings and glorious landscapes. Tim introduces the reader to mark-making with oil pastels, explains the history of the medium, and how to protect and keep an oil pastel painting once it is complete. 

Table of Contents


The history of oil pastels                   

Materials and tools                            

oil pastels                                                       

Additional materials and tools             


Surface preparation                                    

Getting started                                 

Painting a red pepper                                  



Special effects                                                  

Using solvents                                                  

Using oil pastels with other media            


Flowers: Poppy Field                                       

Trees and foliage: Norfolk Lane                

Street scenes: Venice                                      

Buildings: Staithes Cottages                        

harbour scene: ‘Le Fantasque’                     

Animal portraits: Freyja                               

Care and framing of your artwork       



About the Author

About Tim Fisher

Tim Fisher was born in Leicestershire, UK, and has had a lifelong interest in art. He is well known for his love of colour and experimentation and works in a wide range of mediums. Many of his paintings have been produced as fine art prints and cards. Tim is a regular contributor to the 'Leisure Painter' magazine. He also runs workshops and painting holidays as well as demonstrating to art groups throughout the UK.


Follow Tim on Instagram @timfisherartist


The SAA Catalogue 19/20

In a series of full-colour demonstrations, Tim shows you how to work with subjects as diverse as landscapes, buildings, boats, dogs, trees and flowers.

He will also show you how to achieve subtle effects with your oil pastels by using blenders and by combining them with other media such as acrylics and inks.


If you think that oil pastels are just a pricier version of the wax crayon this book will show you how they have really come of age. From their invention in the early 20th century to the acid-free and non-yellowing type we use today they are surprisingly versatile, and mix well with other art media.

I confess to having no idea of their origins so found the short history very interesting. This book will particularly appeal to anybody who possesses existing art skills (and materials) but wants to discover how to incorporate oil pastels in their work. It is a beginners guide to this and not a primer on how to draw and paint. Discover what brand the author buys and what else he suggests you can use. A surprising array of different materials and tools come into play, from a hairdryer to a scalpel, acrylic and watercolour paints, and inks, encaustic iron, hot glue gun and many more. Prepare a variety of surfaces and work through several exercises on mark making, sgraffito, stencilling, masking, using solvents, working with other types of paint and more. Each exercise will produce a painting, the best way of learning any art technique. After the basics there are several projects, which show in classic Search Press style (ie many captioned photographs for a foolproof learning experience) what to do. Paint flowers, a street scene in Venice, trees, a harbour, a dog and a country cottage. Learn too how to frame your work and look after it. It shows how art doesnt have to be about just one medium, but mixing it up a bit can produce some excellent results and also how versatile modern materials can be.

The Artist, February 2019

If you thought oil pastels were just something for your children, think again. As Tim makes clear in his introduction, they were invented 100 years ago as a means of combining the convenience of wax crayons with the quality of pigments suited to more serious art. They have, however struggled to escape the schoolroom connection and have been too frequently overlooked. This book is aimed at the beginner, so you'll need to balance this approach and detailed step-by-step demonstrations against the quality of work that Tim produces and adapt the way you use this, one of the very few books on this subject. Persistence will be rewarded and, with a minimal amount of equipment, you can discover a medium that, while perfect for outdoor sketching, is capable of the subtle effects more often associated with chalk pastels or even watercolour. 

Leisure Painter, January 2019

Well-known to Leisure Painter readers, Tim Fisher demonstrates how to use oil pastels in this Beginner's Guide to Painting with Oil Pastels. The book includes history of oil pastels as well as the materials and tools you will need. Six full step-by-step projects, covering a variety of subjects show readers how to create vibrant oil pastel paintings, and demonstrate how they can be used in conjunction with acrylic inks and paints, as well as watercolours.

Paint magazine (November 2018)

Tim's use of line, colour and economy of shape, make it one of the best books on painting, period. 

Henry Malt

Oil pastels have a hard time of it in the art world. Often regarded as mere childs toys, they were invented in Japan some 100 years ago (Tim includes a fascinating history) as a means of combining wax crayons with the better quality pigments demanded by the serious artist.

As a medium, they have much to recommend them, being easy to carry and requiring little in the way of ancillary equipment. They dont drop colour, have no drying time and the images they create are thoroughly robust. If nothing else, therefore, theyre worthy of consideration as a lightweight sketching medium. However, as Tim amply and ably demonstrates here, theyre capable of considerable subtlety and the results he produces could easily be taken for soft pastel or even watercolour.

This is, as the title suggests, aimed at the beginner and includes a very straightforward introduction and a series of detailed demonstrations that make the mediums capabilities clear. For the more experienced artist, this might be a little more than is required, but it may still prove helpful if you are trying something that is unfamiliar.

If I were to tell you that this is easily the best book on oil pastels Ive seen, youd rightly point out that its probably the only one. This isnt quite true Im pretty sure I remember another but Tim hasnt taken the easy route and has put a lot of trouble into producing a book it will be hard to better.

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Also by this author:

Drawing Perspective

Drawing Perspective

By Tim Fisher


Palette Knife Painting in Acrylics

Palette Knife Painting in Acrylics

By Tim Fisher


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