How To Use Colour Shapers To Blend Pastel

//How To Use Colour Shapers To Blend Pastel

The colour shaper is a tool that I can confidently say has transformed my artwork.

Before I was introduced to them, I would blend pastel using a blending stump or my finger (I still use my finger occasionally for large areas).

The main issue I had with using either of these methods is that the blending stump didn’t give a soft enough blend, and my fingers were too large to blend detailed areas.

What is a Colour Shaper?

A colour shaper is a brush-like tool with a rubber end. It can in fact be used as a brush because you can use the colour that transfers onto the end to mix with the other colours in your picture. We also hold it and use it in a similar way, with brush strokes.

Here’s a video introducing the shapers that I use:

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Variety of Shapers

grey-colour-shaper-featured-300x238Size 2 Grey Chisel End

This colour shaper is used when I need a stronger blend usually when blending the darker tones.

I use the flat side for larger areas and the edge or corner of the tip for tighter blends and effects.

If you only wanted to buy one colour shaper this is the one I would choose.

grey-tapered-colour-shaper-size-2Size 2 Grey Tapered End

This shaper is slightly softer than the chisel ended one and ideal for getting into tighter details, for instance blending darker colours in between two light features.

It could be argued that the edge of the grey chisel would do the same job; this is true however I find that the pointed one is better.

ivory-featured-imageSize 2 Ivory Chisel End

Being softer than the grey shaper this is ideal for blending to a finer finish, areas such as skin, hair, soft fur, skies etc.

children in pastel pencils Part 3

As with the grey chisel this can be used either flat or on its edge or corner of the tip for those hard to reach areas.

I also find this one useful to push the blended background colours up to the edge of a subject where my finger can’t reach.

Tapered Ivory Colour Shaper Size 2Size 2 Ivory Tapered End

Apart from being ideal for use as a tool for the finer detail the ivory chisel can’t reach this is great for creating an ultra-smooth look for many techniques such as water, distance subjects, skies etc.

The reason this works better than the size 2 ivory chisel for these techniques is simply that it is softer.

Size 10 Grey Chisel End

This is a great tool for covering larger areas such as backgrounds, skies, water etc. I am still experimenting with this one and I am sure that I will find many other uses as time goes on.

Here’s the difference in size between the size 2 and 10.

Size 10 Chisel End Colour Shaper in Grey comparison with size 2 copy

Here’s a video demonstrating where I would use the Size 10 Shaper.

If you want to transform your Pastel Art then I couldn’t recommend them enough. Click the button below to view the Product on our online store and place an order:

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By | 2018-11-16T13:58:47+00:00 August 12th, 2016|Tips & Techniques|0 Comments