25 Oil Pastel Drawing Ideas for You

May 17, 2024

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If you’re ready to dive into the vibrant world of oil pastel drawing, you’ve come to the right place. Recently, I received a set of oil pastels as a gift.

With no prior experience using oil pastels or any pastels at all, I embarked on a journey of research and hands-on practice. After putting various tips and techniques to the test, I’ve compiled the most helpful insights for beginners.

Whether you’re completely new to oil pastels or looking to refine your skills, this guide will set you on the right path.

Lets gather our supplies:

You don’t need a lot to get started, just always it is better to be prepared. These are my honest recommendations that I love and use. 

25 Oil Pastel Drawing Ideas for You 1
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To get started with your oil pastel drawings, you’ll need the following supplies:

  1. Oil Pastels: A set of oil pastels in a variety of colors is crucial. You can get started with a set of 25 colors as they are very affordable.  As you get more into it, you can get a professional set of 36 colors and more, an artist grade. 
  2. Drawing Paper: High-quality, textured paper designed for pastels or mixed media. Look for paper that can handle the layering and blending of oil pastels. Strathmore has an amazing range. 
  3. Blending Tools Set: Items such as blending stumps, cotton swabs, or even your fingers can be used to blend and smooth the pastels.
  4. Pencil and Eraser: For sketching out initial ideas before applying the pastels.
  5. Paper Towels or Soft Cloth: Useful for cleaning your hands and blending tools.
  6. Masking Tape: To secure your paper to the drawing surface and create clean borders.

With these supplies, you’ll be well-equipped to start exploring the vibrant and expressive medium of oil pastels.

Tips for Oil Pastel Drawing

  1. Choose the Right Oil Pastels:

    • Invest in a good quality set of oil pastels. Look for brands that are known for their softness and blendability. Avoid cheaper, waxy pastels, which can be harder to work with and less vibrant.
  2. Experiment with Different Surfaces:

    • Try out various surfaces such as textured paper, canvas, and wood panels. Each surface offers a different feel and can dramatically change the outcome of your artwork. Find the one that best suits your style.
  3. Mind the Temperature:

    • Store your oil pastels in a cool, dry place. Heat can make them too soft and challenging to control, while cold can make them hard and brittle. Keeping them at a stable, moderate temperature ensures they stay in optimal condition.
  4. Use Blending Tools:

    • Fingers are commonly used for blending, but tools like blending stumps, cotton swabs, or brushes can offer more precision and keep your hands clean. Experiment with different tools to see what works best for your technique.
  5. Layering Techniques:

    • Start with light layers and gradually build up to darker shades. This approach helps you maintain control over the blending process and achieve a richer, more textured look in your artwork.
  6. Fixative Sprays:

    • Use a fixative spray to protect your finished drawing from smudging. Fixatives help preserve the integrity of your artwork, especially if you plan to display or store it. Make sure to use a fixative specifically designed for oil pastels.
  7. Mixing Mediums:

    • Don’t be afraid to combine oil pastels with other mediums such as colored pencils, watercolors, or acrylics. Mixed media can add depth and interest to your work, allowing for more creative expression.
  8. Prevent Smudging:

    • To avoid smudging your work, try not to rest your hand directly on the paper. Use an artist’s glove or place a piece of paper under your hand as you draw. This simple precaution can help keep your artwork clean and crisp.

30+ Oil Pastel Tutorials:

01. Oil Pastel Tutorial for Cherry Blossom Tree

Discover a world of creativity with this step-by-step oil pastel tutorial on how to draw a cherry blossom tree. At first, it may seem a little overwhelming and difficult but with a little bit of practice, you can create an absolutely beautiful drawing for yourself. 

02. How Draw Clementine

Drawing a clementine can be very fun, especially as a great design for your sketchbook. Orange color can be so much fun. 

03. Step by Step Draw Kiwi in Oil Pastel

It is an oil pastel tutorial for beginners on how to draw a green kiwi. It is such a perfect thing to draw. Probably you have one at home, so cut it open and get to drawing. 

04. Oil Pastel Tutorial: Red Hearts for Valentines Day

Drawing these hearts is so cute in oil pastels. They can be cute as drawings on the cards, or part of a decor. Does not need to be a Valentine’s day to draw a card for someone that you love. 

05. Paint Oil Pastel Leaves Easy Step By Step

Leaves are a great place to start for any beginner. Pay attention to different tones and how she approaches the composition. This tutorial shows you exactly how to go about it. 

06. How to Draw Cherry Blossom in Oil Pastel

Black paper is amazing when it comes to painting the light color of flowers. Pink looks amazing, so try to follow along with this oil pastel tutorial. 

If you have enjoyed this tutorial, then do not forget to check out this gouache book for complete beginners called: Oil Pastel Masterpieces in 4 Easy Steps. 

07. Blue Floral Bunch in Oil Pastel

Baby blue flowers are so cute. Grab some light blue pastels and get to sketching. 

08. Mini Sea Landscape in Oil Pastel

It is so perfect as an idea, to go to the beach, grab some art supplies and get to work. It is so nice to look back on the memories sometimes. 

09. Blue Cat Portrait on Pink Background

The cat looks calm and peaceful. The artist used oil pastels, giving the picture a soft and textured feel. The blue cat stands out clearly against the pink background, making the picture eye-catching and unique. This colorful and fun portrait would be a great addition to any room.

10. Orange Car Sitting on The Doorstep

Whether you have a pet or not, they can be such an amazing subject to capture. Don’t be afraid to mix different colours to add character to your work. 

11. Cat Looking Out the Window on Pink Background

The pink paper adds such nice character. The best way to learn is to copy art, this drawing creates a great opportunity to master drawing a cat from the side profile. 

12. Coffee Pot with Squares Aesthetic Colors

The red paper as a background looks great, allowing the work to be colourful. A full range of reds, whites and pinks make it stand out. 

13. Orange Sleeping Cat with Violet Highlights in Pastel

When you want to make something look modern and stylised, do not forget that it is not that hard. Try to come up with a palette that looks well together. 

14. Baking Supplies in Oil Pastels

Baking can be fun, but messy. Why not just draw the process? Might save you some cleanup time. 

15. Cute Wildflower Bunch in Oil Pastels

Getting any flowers is always such an amazing event. I love to buy them for myself and to receive them. Also, you can paint them for yourself or someone that you love. 

16. Pink Flowers in a Vase

Anything pink is so cute. This is a sign for you to embrace your inner Barbie and get to drawing the adorable flower arrangement. 

17. Gorgeous Iris Flower in Oil Pastel

18. Aesthetic Breakfast Drawing

19. Cute Veggies Drawings in Oil Pastel

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20. Winter Sunset Forest Landscape

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21. Wildflower Colorful Drawing in Pastels

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22. Pink Tulips and a Book in Oil Pastel

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23. Pink Slice of Cake

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24. Mini Pink Floral Landscape

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25. Red Poppy Field Landscape in Oil Pastel

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Flower fields are a great idea to draw for anyone. 

26. Small Lavender Field Landscape

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Nature is so beautiful. Capture it in the sketchbook and be in awe of it.

27. Sunflower Bouquet Arrangement

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Van Gogh has his famous sunflowers, they usually look so great and so inspiring. 

28. Anatomy of Flowers

There are so many kinds of flowers, and there is no better way than to just fit in a bunch of flowers on the page. 

29. Poppy Flowers

Reds of poppy flowers make it such an amazing card as a gift or as a sketch in the sketchbook. 

30. Baby Blue Hydragenea Flowers

The hadragenous flower was one of favourite Blair Waldorf’s flowers for a good reason. They look so pretty, and blue is the color of the season.

31. Pink Cosmos Flowers in Oil Pastels

Cosmos flower is easy to copy for a beginner. 

32. Peaches Brunches in Oil Pastels

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Draw this gorgeous branch. It is so beautiful, so take your oil pastels and get to drawing. 

33. Pink Tulips in a Vase

Pink tulips are the best thing about the spring season. They can be the memory that you get to keep for yourself after when the tulip season is over. 

If you have enjoyed this tutorial, then do not forget to check out this gouache book for complete beginners called: Oil Pastel Masterpieces in 4 Easy Steps.