Soft Pastels – Round VS. Square.

Round soft pastels can be used to achieve plasticity when drawing a portrait. Their main plus is good spreadability with the fingertips. This feature is especially useful for larger areas such as hair, cheeks and neck. Compared to the detail of eyes, nose and mouth, you just need to sketch the outline.

For further continuation, it is better to use square soft pastels; thanks to the edges they are easier to hold, which brings greater certainty and a firmer hand when working on details.



Another advantage of square crayons is the possibility of using all the edges of individual sticks, which allow working on a detail (eyes, nose, mouth). Last but not least, square crayons allow better control of the pressure applied on the paper. We draw the details of the drawing that we wish to stand out from the image with the tip of the prism on which we apply more pressure.

Rough drawing surface helps to make the drawing more plastic and it does not smudge at the fingertips and does not dirty as much as when working on smooth surfaces. Frequent withdrawal is important during the drawing of each image, because we perceive it as a whole, we are not absorbed by the detail and we also see errors better.


We would recommend using Loxley Fixative after the artwork is complete to prevent smudging. You need to apply the fixative to the work in progress in order to ‘fix’ layers and prevent any smudging. Make sure you allow a couple of minutes for it to dry before you continue drawing. Then apply the final coat which will protect the finished picture from smudging. 


How to use Soft Pastels