How to Draw Clouds with Chalk Pastels


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You can create beautiful landscapes through the use of chalk pastels.  Chalk pastels are also called soft pastels.  The medium lends itself to painting effects, but can be applied to a surface using traditional drawing techniques.  This makes pastels a favorite among artists with strong drawing skills that want to create a painterly effect on a surface.

When you are drawing a landscape with soft pastels, you'll want to approach the drawing much like you would in a landscape painting with oils or acrylics.  This means that it is best to start the drawing with the background, then move on to the middleground, and lastly, the foreground.  Since soft pastels can be layered, you can complete each section of the drawing before moving on to the next.

Many landscapes will require drawing the sky.  A cloudless sky is relatively easy to accomplish, just some simple layering and blending of the material will suffice.  However, when clouds are introduced to the scene, the sky can become more complex. 

Tips on Drawing Clouds in Chalk Pastels

This tutorial will look at drawing clouds in a soft pastel drawing. Here is a look at the completed drawing...

Finished drawing of clouds in chalk pastels

When you approach clouds in a drawing, you should keep in mind that clouds are 3D objects.  Mostly, clouds are organic forms and take on any shape.  So feel free when you are making marks.  You can be loose with the marks as this will encourage the illusion of organic shapes.

Like a 3D forms, the appearance of clouds is effected by light.  Therefore, they will have a highlighted side and a shadowed side. Creating the illusion of the highlights and shadows will go far in creating realistic looking clouds. 

Highlights and shadows on clouds

It is also essential to consider value.  You should make an attempt to include a full range of value in your drawing.  If we take the color out of the drawing and only leave the values, we can still translate the clouds.  This is important in every type of subject matter, not just for clouds.

Black and white clouds

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