Stuffed animal drawings in soft pastel – art project

Stuffed animal drawings in soft pastel – art project

One of my own favorite materials when I was an art-class student were soft pastels. I love how you can blend it and add texturen afterwards. Layering, blending, drawing and using your own hand the most! When I thought artclass, one of the least favorite projects were the ones where the kids had to do observational drawings. So some years ago I came up with the idea to link the fun of soft pastels to the more boring observational drawing. I asked them to bring a stuffed animal to class to do stuffed animal drawings in soft pastels.

Observational drawing.

The hardest part when kids have to do observational drawings is making sure they learn to draw what they see, not what they (think) they know.  Measuring and studying the object you want to draw is very important.


Knuffels in zachte pastels

Tips and tricks for drawing with soft pastels.

  1. When you hold the pastels on the side you can color larger shapes. When you use the tip, you can draw more precise.
  2. Work in layers. Make sure the kids don’t color their sheet too full to start with. It is better to draw layer onto layer and add texture later.
  3. You can blend with your fingers, but you can use a tissue or the special stumper to blend the colors.
  4. You can add texture using the hatching technique. It’s best to first color a shape and add hatches later.
  5. Use a paper in a different backgroundcolor than white. It gives unity to your drawing.


Drawing stuffed animals with soft pastels – art project

  • Make sure the kids measure their stuffed animal. They can use a ruler of the measuring technique using a pencil.
  • Talk about all the different shapes they see in their stuffed animal.
  • Let the kids chose a background color. If you don’t have pastel paper, you can use colored craft paper, it works too!
  • Let them sketch out the big shapes of their animal, using a soft pastel that matches the background color. Dark grey for a black background, light yellow for a yellow background.
  • Let them color the big shapes. Talk about where the dark parts of their stuffed animal are and how they have to do some shading too.
  • Let them draw lines with the tip on the soft pastel to create texture.
  • Fixate the drawing when it is finished. (You can use hairspray too)

The results were amazing.

Take care and see you soon!

Love Ilse 



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