Oil pastels are a popular art medium for both children and adults. They can be used to create realistic drawings, landscape paintings, and abstract art, but some people may have concerns about the toxicity of oil pastels. This article will explore what is meant by “toxic pigments” and how you can safely handle soft pastels to avoid any harmful exposure.
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What Are Oil Pastels?
Oil pastels are a painting and drawing medium consisting of dry pigments mixed with a binder mixture of non-drying oil and wax.
What is the difference Between Oil Pastels And Crayons?
Oil pastels are different from crayons because the latter is a drawing medium consisting of pigment mixed with wax. Crayons are harder, and the colors don’t mix as well as oil pastels.
Oil pastels have fewer fillers and softer pigments, which makes them more delicate than crayons. Oil pastels are made up of wax binding to hold the pigment, making them rich, smooth, and creamy. The vibrant colors also are easy to blend with fingers or paper.
What Are Oil Pastels Made Of?
Oil pastels are made up of a mixture of pigment and binder. The different pigments are what produce the different colors. Some of the pigments used in oil pastels contain toxic compounds, which can be released into the air when heated or fragmented through abrasion.
What Are Toxic Pigments?
A list of toxic pigments: lead, cadmium yellow, zinc white (lead-based), chromate yellow, azo dyes.
What Is Cadmium Yellow?
A toxic pigment that is both carcinogenic and teratogenic can lead to cancerous tumors, lung cancer, and congenital disabilities in the developing fetus.
How Can You Tell If a Pigment Color Contains Lead or Cadmium?
Some manufacturers will put a warning on the oil pastels saying, “Keep out of reach of children,” to let you know that they contain these toxic pigments. If there is no label, you may want to contact the manufacturer or do some research online about what color pigment was used in your specific brand.
What Should You Do To Handle Oil Pastels Safely?
Do not expose oil pastels to heat or sunlight. Keep them in a cool, dry place out of the reach of children and pets. If you have small children who like to put things into their mouths, don’t use lead-based pigments – they are especially harmful if young toddlers ingest them as they are easily absorbed through the skin or the lining of their mouth.
If you’re using oil pastels, make sure to wear gloves when handling them and wash your hands thoroughly afterward. This will help keep any harmful substances from penetrating through your skin or being absorbed into your body.
It’s always a good idea to avoid eating while working with oil pastels because they can taste unpleasant.
Do not use oil pastels if you are pregnant or nursing, and avoid using them around animals that may be more sensitive to toxic chemicals than humans (e.g., birds).
If your skin comes in contact with the pigment, make sure to wash it off immediately. Wash any clothes or materials that have come into contact with the pastel pigment.
You might want to consider wearing a mask in case of accidental inhalation of pigment dust.
How To Store Oil Pastels?
Store oil sticks in a cool, dry place out of the reach of children and pets.
What Are Some Tips For Safely Handling Oil Pastels?
– Never put them into an airtight container because this can cause toxic fumes to form
– Keep them away from heat as it will make the volatile compounds more likely to react and create a toxic reaction
– If your hands or clothes come in contact with the pigments, wash them immediately
Best Oil Pastels
Many artists enjoy working with soft pastels because they come in a wide range of colors applied on different surfaces. Here are some of the most popular brands professional artists use for their art projects.
Derwent Academy Oil Pastels – are the ideal tool for artists and hobbyists of all levels. They come in various vibrant colors, each with its own unique texture that will leave you feeling inspired to create something new. The quick-drying pigments allow them to blend well with other colors, so don’t be afraid to try out your wildest ideas!
Sennelier Oil Pastels – Henri Goetz approached Henri Sennelier, the famous artist materials manufacturer, to create wax color sticks for his friend Pablo Picasso. Being a long-time customer of Senneliers and frequent visitor at their store across from the Louvre Museum in Paris, he was looking for a medium that can be used freely on various surfaces without fading or cracking. The collaboration created incomparable oil pastels, which were originally available in classic hues but now include metallic and iridescent shades.
Caran d’Ache Oil Pastels – Neopastels are the perfect pastel for artists of all levels. Unlike other brands, Neopastels do not contain any dust whatsoever, meaning your drawing space will be clean and tidy with no mess! These professional quality oil pastels boast a superb smoothness that creates intense coloring or delicate shading. It can also create subtle transitions in hue when you combine different colors on paper- truly an artist’s dream come true.
Faber Castell Oil Pastels – Faber-Castell has always been the best choice for artists and those looking to experience art in a new way. Faber Castel offers an affordable alternative catering specifically to students with quality at unbeatable prices! The Goldfaber line is perfect for children of all ages who are just starting their adventures into creative endeavors or experimenting with different painting techniques. It’s easy on your budget but not on creativity: these colors blend smoothly and evenly without being too hard, so you can achieve rich oil pastel effects whenever you want them! This collection also ensures good lightfastness–perfect for kids playing outside during recess.
Pentel Arts Oil Pastels – The Prismacolor Premier Colored Pencils are a staple for any artist, but you don’t need to be an accomplished painter or illustrator. The pencil tip is firm enough to color on anything from paper and canvas to other types of surfaces like fabric, metal embellishments such as buttons and beads. This means the possibilities for your creativity are endless!
Student Grade Oil Pastels
Below are some oil pastels at an affordable price.
Pelikan Oil Pastels – Junior Artist Oil Pastels are the perfect tool for young artists. These student-quality oil pastel sticks produce bright, intense colors that blend easily and last without fading. Whether you’re looking to try out some new techniques or need something fun to get your creativity flowing, these vibrant pastels will help you create amazing masterpieces in no time at all!
Crayola Oil Pastels – Crayola Oil Pastels are a great choice for little learners. They have the smooth, creamy texture and true hues that teachers love as well no-roll hexagonal shape is perfect for keeping away pesky crumbs!
Final Thoughts On Oil Pastel Painting
Many different toxic chemicals can be found in oil mediums and drawing materials like lead and cadmium yellow. It is important to know about toxic substances present in oil pastels so you can handle them safely.
If you are pregnant or nursing, avoid using oil pastels because they can be absorbed through your skin. And if you have small children who like to put things into their mouths, don’t use lead-based pigments – they’re especially harmful to toddlers because the pigment is so easily absorbed by young kids and even ingested. If exposed to heat or sunlight, the substances will evaporate and be released into the air.
To store them safely, keep your oil pastels in a cool, dry place out of reach of kids and pets. It’s also important that when handling an oil pastel, you wear gloves to prevent it from coming through your skin – this can lead to serious health risks. Don’t use oil pastels if you have an allergy to the pigment, as it can be potentially harmful.
Oil pastels are a great way to add brilliant colors and detail to your work when drawing or painting – make sure you know about their hazards so that you can handle them safely. If you want to create art that looks like oil paintings with vivid colors without all of the mess, then oil pastels will be a good choice.
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