Well it’s all over for another year. The 2nd Annual Pastel Live wrapped on Saturday after four whole days of amazingness (is that a word??). Based on what they’d experienced, I know that a whole lot of attendees signed up for Pastel Live 2023 as soon as it was announced. And who wouldn’t?!! I can’t wait for next year’s event.

We already have some crazy fantastic artists lined up, artists like Aaron Schuerr, Emma Colbert, Sandra Burshell, Christine Swann, Casey Klahn, Jeri Greenberg, Tom Bailey, Albert Handell, Greg Barnes, Peter Adams, Isabelle Lim, Julie Freeman, and Jill Stefani Wagner!


Collage of four artists on Pastel Live 2023 faculty
Collage of four artists on Pastel Live 2023 faculty.


Over the past few days, you’ve been receiving daily highlights about the 2nd annual Pastel Live from Cheri Dawn Haas who basically did a Pastel Today take over while I was co-hosting the event with Eric Rhoads. A HUGE thank you to Cheri Dawn for putting these together!! (If you missed them, here’s Beginner’s Day, Day 1, Day 2, and Day 3.)

It was an intense, exhausting, exhilarating experience for me both as a co-host (a new role for me!) and as an attendee. The artists we had teaching were all brilliant and I didn’t want to miss a thing! The magic was seeing them work, bringing their paintings to life before our eyes. AND, we got to hear what they were thinking – why they added that colour, made that mark, changed that edge. As a faculty member itself, I know what a task it was to put together a demonstration that would clearly share everything we wanted to say. So bravo to them all!

Fascinating and confirming for me as an instructor is that so many of the faculty talked about the same things – the importance of value, edge, composition, intensity, linear and atmospheric perspective, measuring, and understanding colour. Yet each spoke about it and illustrated it with their own verbal “language” and artistic style. 

We were offered such a wide variety of subjects – cityscapes, landscapes, still life, floral, animals, and portraits – and in so many different styles, from impressionistic to hyper-realism. And it didn’t matter if you weren’t necessarily interested in a particular genre or style of painting, there was always something to learn, some tip to pick up and takeaway.

I have a stack of notes! Some attendees took super cool notes:


Pastel Live 2022: Eugenia Algaze Garcia shares her notes and sketch from Doug Dawson's demo
Eugenia Algaze Garcia shares her notes and sketch from Doug Dawson’s demo.


Kari McCall Waltz shares her notes and paintings from sessions by Albert Handell and Lyn Diefenbach.
Kari McCall Waltz shares her notes and paintings from sessions by Albert Handell and Lyn Diefenbach.


The other thing I thought very cool was the variety of presentations! What I mean by that is the different ways each instructor shot their video – what environment they were in (lovely to see other artists’s studios!), how they did their introductions, what angle the camera was at to shoot the demo. I hadn’t thought about this at the start, but this too added to the interest and excitement of the event.

Another fantastic thing about Pastel Live 2022 was the Silent Auction! Many faculty had paintings in the auction and it was fabulous to see the Sold signs popping up! (I’m kicking myself for not putting in a bid on a couple of pieces! You snooze, you lose.)

Many of the 2nd annual Pastel Live participants actually painted along. How??? How did they do that? 


Pastel Live 2022: Joycelyn Schedler painting along with Gail. You can see we had some fun people along with us!!
Joycelyn Schedler painting along with Gail. You can see we had some fun people along with us!! Joycelyn took home the award for most social media postings! Congratulations!


Some of the many paintings Kris K. Finer did alongside the Pastel Live 2022 faculty. Amazing!!
Some of the many paintings Kris K. Finer did alongside the Pastel Live 2022 faculty. Amazing!!


One of the other highlights beyond the learning was checking in with attendees in breakout rooms (two sessions a day) and then at the Paint-Along in the Cocktail Hour at the end of the day. I LOVED meeting people, hearing where they were from, and hearing their passion as they talked about what they’d just seen and learned. So exhilarating!


Pastel Live 2022: The coolest drawing by Shirley Akers of one of the Zoom PaintAlong session!
The coolest drawing by Shirley Akers of one of the Zoom PaintAlong session!


The Pastel Live crew were incredible as were the whole Streamline support team in the background. (You have no idea the amount of work, fixes, communication, teeterings, that goes on behind the scenes!) And I think, it all went pretty smoothly.

And now it’s time to settle in to watch replays and try out different techniques and possibilities in our own work. We get on such a high, learn sooooo much (as Eric said, it’s like a firehose into a teacup!), and then collapse from exhaustion. But we need to make sure we keep the momentum going and get into our studios! 

And hey, if you loved the event, tell your art retailer (where you buy your pastels) how incredible it was and inspire them to become sponsors for next year’s event. I bet this year’s sponsors were happy with the extra traffic to their websites! We all wanted to support them to make sure they could feel the loooove and come back next year 😊.

If you were at the 2nd annual Pastel Live, leave a comment under this post. Let me know three things:

  1. Your #1 takeaway and how you are going to implement it
  2. One thing we can do to make the event even better next year
  3. Who would you love to see on faculty at next year’s Pastel Live?

And if you weren’t at this 2nd Annual Pastel Live, let me know if you have any questions about the event by also leaving a comment below.

Look forward to hearing from you!!



Pastel Society of New Hampshire Call For Entry


It’s not too late!!

You still have time to enter the 14th Annual Juried show! Only open to artists in the United States, the deadline is Monday 29th August


Pastel Society of New Hampshire logo
Pastel Society of New Hampshire

The show moves back into the physical world after being online for the past two years and will run from 22 October to 18 November – a full month!! The gallery at the Discover Portsmouth Center will be open seven days a week from 10am to 5pm giving your work maximum visibility! 

And guess what?? I’m delighted to tell you that I’m the Juror of Selection. 😁 Juror of Awards is Alain Picard who will give a talk at the Opening Reception. 

So get your entries in NOW!!

And that’s it for this time,




  1. 1. So very many things, but here’s one. The importance of a thumbnail to identify masses, viewer direction, and values and then a color thumbnail to identify temperature and hue. It’s so tempting to bypass these but they pay off and resolve issues early on. My intent is to do them with every painting.
    2. Have 2 or 3 of the presenters do the paint a long live with us (maybe abstract, impressionist, realist) so we can see several ways to approach the image. And record that.
    3. Tony Allain, Lana Ballot, Alain Picard

  2. Question – How does the 2023 Premier ticket price of $497 compare to the early bird pricing specials that were running this summer for the 2022 PL event? In other words, I’d like some assurance that this is truly the lowest price that will be offered, as well as just for my own FYI as to how the 2023 pricing compares to the 2022 event. Thank you.

    • Hi Ginger, thanks for your question.
      The pricing is the same for both events. And what you see on the website is the lowest price it will be for Pastel Live 2023. Hope that helps!

  3. 1. Takeaway: The way Karen Margolis demonstrated her technique for under painting with watercolor after a value notan.
    2. I hope to see at least one abstract instructor for 2023, if not two!
    3. I would love to see Teresa Saia at Pastel Live 2023!
    Overall, it was a fantastic event once again! I am one of the attendees who painted along with each demo! Exhausting but exhilarating, like you said, and so informative! So many different styles to try. Already signed up for 2023. Thank you for all who put this together. Great job!

    • Good point Marlene about an instructor in abstracts. It’s definitely on the list. Casey Klahn’s work is definitely moving towards abstraction.
      Teresa is now on our list to consider.

      Glad you enjoyed Pastel Live 2022 so much and brava to you painting along 👏
      And thanks for signing up for the 3rd Annual event.

  4. Your #1 takeaway and how you are going to implement it
    If I can paint 15 paintings in 4 days, I definitely need to manage my time better and complete at least ONE painting per week. Yes, I cleared everything from my schedule for Pastel Live and I can’t always do that, but I CAN make painting a priority over some of the “time fillers”. For instance, reading/posting on Insta. and FB can wait until the evening hours when the painting light is gone. I’m going to schedule PAINT NOW on my calendar.

    One thing we can do to make the event even better next year
    It would be great if in the Materials List, the artist could mention where they will start their demo. There were some artists I really wanted to paint along with, but they had already done the sketch in. It could be as simple as: I will start on a blank 9″/12″ UART 400 sheet or I will start the demo with a sketch in done in vine charcoal on a 9″/12″ UART 400 sheet. I was thankful for the materials list and reference photo ahead of time.

    Who would you love to see on faculty at next year’s Pastel Live?
    I adore the teaching style and easy-going attitude of Alain Picard.
    Also, the direct painting style of Natasha Isenhour would be great as well.

    PS: Thanks for the mention on the media posts award. I was shocked, but happy. I had fun with those posts! It was great seeing your smiling face everyday too!

    • Ba da bing, ba da BOOM Joycelyn for your answer to #1. It’s amazing how we can time fill and not put our art-making FIRST!
      Great idea for improvement – thanks!
      And thanks for the instructor suggestions – on the list!
      Glad you had fun with your posts – they always made me smile 😁

  5. #1 No.1 takeaway and how to implement: plan and design upfront!
    #2 To improve event: longer demos (haha!)
    #3 2023 faculty: Nina Squire, Rebecca de Mendonça

    • Yay to #1 Susan! (And yup – I’m working on the Thumbnail Masterclass – the Manicourse 🤣) watch out for that!
      Hah hah to longer demos – I hear yah…and can we have more than 24 hours in a day lease!
      Thanks for your instructor suggestions!

  6. Your #1 takeaway and how you are going to implement it
    The bane of my existence -thumbnails, yet mentioned so many times! I do hope you do that class on thumbnails, although doing the thumbnail in 3 values as was mentioned seems more doable for me

  7. #1 takeaway- the thumbnail and value studies.
    #2 takeaway- there is something to be learned from each individual artist. I looked at the reference images to determine with which artist I would paint along. It wasn’t until they actually started the demo, that I realized that normally I would not paint in that style. The biggest eye opener was Rita Kirkman. I looked at the bunny reference image and said, I don’t really want to paint a bunny, I’ll just watch this one. When i saw the painting of the sheep in the background i was kicking myself that i hadn’t prepped this one. I’ve long admired her sunlit animals, but hadn’t really been aware of who the artist was. This is one demo i will follow along in the replays. It helped me not to look at the bodies of work of the various artists, because it gave me so many techniques and helpful hints. I may do the same for 2023 and be surprised at the outcomes of the paintings. An open mind where style is concerned is so important.
    #3 takeaway. I’m so new to pastels, that I haven’t really researched pastel artists.
    Pastel Live was the most amazing online event. I learned so much and have grown so much as a pastellist in just four days, it astonishes me. Can’t wait for 2023.

    • Fantastic takeaways Judy. Personally I love seeing thumbnails at the top!!
      And yes, an open mind – so so important! We can always learn something!
      So good to hear about your growth over the four days. Keep painting!! See you in 2023 and until then, I’ll see you hear and on HowToPastel!

  8. 1. My number one takeaway was when Nancie King Mertz explained that figures in the foreground and in the distance were all on the same sight line plane. As they move away into the distance, their bodies become smaller, but their heads/eyes are always on the same plane. I found a great short video that explains this well. I will be trying to do more street scenes with figures. Sad that Nancie’s last half of the video didn’t record, so we missed that part.
    2. How to make the program better…. hmmm… it was SO good. Perhaps longer demos? And have the artist BEGIN the demo from scratch for those of us who DO want to try and paint along. Loved the break out rooms… so perhaps a few more of those. I know that time is an issue, but perhaps begin a bit earlier in the day.
    3. I would love to see Stephie Clark, Marla Baggetta, Alain Picard, Alain Voinot and Michel Breton as presenters. Not sure if the last two speak English, but a translator could be used like with Vera Kavura.

    • Fantastic Mike!
      Great takeaway! Understanding how eye level affects. placement of figures is crucial to making a scene “look right.”
      And thanks for your ideas on how we can improve. All ideas are helpful!
      And also, thank you for your list of.presenters you’d like to see. They’ve been added to our list 😁


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