6 Most Famous Pastel Artist

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History has a rich representation of different painting mediums worldwide with a list of the most famous pastel artist of all time to start with. Catering other painting materials to choose from, pastel paint has reached artists’ hearts worldwide with its unique and vibrant colors. It inspires artists’ taste and fresh color preferences which allow the manipulation of texture to a unique personal touch of blending.

With pastel paints rich pigments, there is more to just color and technique that make them an artist’s favorite medium for creating a wonderfully realistic and velvety texture. Who are all those famous artists taken by pastel paints excellent composition? Let’s meet them all and know why they love pastel overall characteristics.

Most Famous Pastel Artist

Most Famous Pastel Artist
Odilon Redon – Pastel Painting – Most Famous Pastel Artist

Many artists have executed pastels and made the most of this medium with their paintings.

Odilon Redon

One of the most famous pastel artists is Odilon Redon; he likes pastels. They provide his paintings with the perfect colors and texture that allow realism in his portraits, landscape images, and exquisite marks through pastel painting experimentation. He had permitted pastel paints to reach their optimized consistency of rich and beautiful pigments in his workpiece through his eye for details and proper application and blending of pastels.

Frederick Childe Hassam

A successful merchant by blood, known for his incredible paintings of landscapes, nature scenes, and abstract designs of skies and green gardens. Most famous pastel artist and an American Impressionist that showcase pastel painting’s beauty through his artworks.

A must-have art supply for your tiny Van Gogh. The classic colors are always a hit with kiddos, and for the more mature young artist, oil pastels can provide a new medium to engage their creativity and imagination.



Our Pick

Cray-Pas Oil Pastel Set


Cray pas specialist oil pastel set
Extremely high concentrated pigment formulation
Each specialist is performance rated for light-fastness
Enhances fine art drawing, commercial art, and illustration
Set consists of 50 colors



William Merritt Chase

The founder of a famous group of pastel painters in the United States in early 1882, where he was able to include some of the most famous pastel artists as well like the likes of Robert Reid, John Henry Twachtman, and Childe Hassam. Though the organization didn’t last longer than expected, it had somehow paved the way for four major pastel art exhibitions that help build the reputation of the medium for typical artists alike. Most of Chase’s artworks have huge sizes that are made from canvas and are pastel drawings.

Mary Cassatt

Inspired by a great friend on pastel painting mediums, Mary then became one of the best pastel painters and considered one of the most famous pastel artists in her generation that opened doors to support her life while in Paris. Though she experimented with pastel manipulations and blending, her love for children has seen in her portrait subjects. Every line and delicate form of texture is visible throughout her journey with pastels. She had taken advantage of pastels’ unique characteristics and vibrant color selections with their convenience to carry anywhere she goes.

Most Famous Pastel Artist
Edgar Degas Pastel Painting – Most Famous Pastel Artist

Edgar Degas

The most influential artist of his generation gave pastel paints a new look and reputation. He focused on how to enriched pastel painting qualities and introduced the medium to other painters close to him. His journey for pastels allowed the medium to grow and be considered an alternative to oil painting too. Throughout his painting sessions, Degas embraced pastel painting and created fully riched artworks for the next generation to study.

Jean Francois Millet

She is considered the first artist to draw with pastel aside from painting with the medium. More or less 90 artworks on her name are all made from pastel paints; her collections promise the perfect mixing of pastel paints that produce their rich and vibrant colors in different applications and techniques.

Most Famous Pastel Artist: Oil Pastels

Oil pastels that are also known as wax crayons are almost the same as the oil paintings, though they differ in the application; thus, you can apply oil pastels without any paintbrush. They are a portable medium that can go anywhere the artist wish to carry them.



Mungyo Soft Oil Pastel  


Vivid and brilliant colors – available up to 64 colors (US English Version)
All techniques of the pastel can be applied easily; Blending, Gradation, Dry-wash, etc
Easy to draw with a smooth touch.
Made from the finest materials.


Though oil pastels have difficulty staying on the painting surface, using fixatives may be an option. In contrast, fixatives may dull the pigments a little; other artists use a special paper to protect the painting’s surface from getting damaged or smudge.

Henri Sennelier was the origin of why we have oil pastel paintings to this day. Thanks to Picasso who talked him over to creating a more nuanced arts version of this medium way back in 1949, painting with oil pastels was possible and easy for all artists alike.

Jean-Étienne Liotard

Renowned oil pastel artist of his time, the most known piece he made was “The Chocolate Girl“. It was picturesque of a lady with her porcelain teacup containing hot chocolate for serving, which is not shown in the background. In those years, hot chocolate is for elite society and was only afford by wealthy people. Considered as the best of all his oil pastel works to date. 

Jean Baptiste Chardin

One of the most famous pastel artists, he used oil pastels when he did his very own “self-portrait” of oil pastel in 1771. Most of his art crafts are images of chambermaids and domestic helpers, which he considered an inspiration to every art session. To count all of his oil pastel paintings, it will be around 200 pieces throughout his lifetime.

Maurice Quentin De La Tour

Most Famous Pastel Artist
Jean Baptiste Chardin Pastel Painting – Most Famous Pastel Artist

Started his career at the young age of 15, La Tour had 150 oil paintings in his belt, the famous “Playing The Guitar” oil pastel painting was finished in 1742 and now owned by someone out of the public eye.

Modern Pastel Painters

Andrew McDermott

Intriguing may be an understatement for this modern artist as he depicts all boundaries of contemporary visuals when it comes to pastel painting, his award-winning piece of “Downtown” captured in a scene more likely to compare as a bird’s eye view. He created this painting on a black surface contrary to what others are telling as black is prohibited in pastel painting.

Nancy McDonald

Her award-winning painting “Jewels” showcase her rich fascination with colors and blending them all. Breaking boundaries on color theory and selection, Jewels sets the new standard of vibrant and complex shades.

Brennie Brackett

She had master the art of composing what she wants to see on her paintings and making sure that she can be amazed at the outcome of the pastel painting that her hands have created at the end of every art session.


Budget Pick

Crayola Oil Pastels  


Easy Grip: Crayola oil pastels have rich color and creamy laydown Colors are easy to blend Pointed tips
At Home Crafts & Indoor Activities: Keep spirits high with creative art supplies!
Oil Pastels: Perfect for art classrooms poster making Community art groups and more Crayola pastels make art projects easy and fun! Choose your favorite colors & make sure you’re never without the perfect pastel


Sam Goodsell

Known for his particular focus on playing with his thumbnail sketches, he finds and imagines the perfect direction into his pastel paintings.

 Diana DeSantis

A pastel painter focuses entirely on details and key features of all her works as she finds inspiration in each uncertainty of shapes and features.

Pastel Painting

Most Famous Pastel Artist
Nancy Mcdonald Pastel Painting – Most Famous Pastel Artist

Pastel painting, be it the oil pastel paints or the dry chalk-like sticks are loved by most famous pastel artists because of their renowned portability and rich, vibrant selection of colors that make any portrait realistic by their given colors. Pastels’ soft texture makes it easier to manipulate and apply to your desired painting surface. It is an excellent advantage for you to calculate the blending and mixing of colors by your own hands without any paintbrush involved. 

Creativity and interest are enhanced with materials that encourage exploration and expression. Sakura Cray-Pas Oil Pastels can help you in your project it is applicable for creative drawing, lettering and signage, scratch art and dot art, wall art and stenciling art, cards, and craft projects.

With limited materials to this medium, anyone can paint with just a set of desired pigments and a sanded paper. You are good to go and create the first perfect art piece like a professional oil or chalk pastel painter. Talking about convenience, you won’t be needing any thinner or solvents, you won’t need sets of paintbrushes, though blending is more of hands-on requirements, that is the advantage of pastel painting. With almost unlimited color selections and endless possibilities of blending and experimentation, practice is what you will need plus an artistic point of view to be part of the long list of great pastel artists of this generation.

Want to learn more about pastels and how to preserve pastel paintings without getting smudge properly? Click here for more information. 

If you have recommendations and feedback regarding these products, you can comment down below.

Everything we recommend

Our Pick

Cray-Pas Oil Pastel Set

Formulated craypas oil pastels with premium quality pigments, wax, and oil. The motivation was to provide school children with a blendable, smooth textured art material to help promote creativity and self-expression.



Mungyo Soft Oil Pastel 

All techniques of the pastel can be applied easily; Blending, Gradation, Dry-wash, etc Easy to draw with a smooth touch. Fade-resistant.



Budget Pick

Crayola Oil Pastels

Crayola Oil Pastels in 28 rich, creamy colors for easy application and blending. Perfect for art classrooms, poster making, kids crafts, and more, oil crayons make art projects easy and fun. 


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Tropic Drawing
Tropic Drawing
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