Oil Pastel Art – A Zippo Lighter
Zippo Lighter Drawing in Oil Pastels
Oil Pastel Drawing - "Zippo Lighter"

This drawing is a zippo lighter in Oil Pastels. I did this on sand-colored Pastelbord, size 8×10.

It has been mentioned that a reflection within the lighter might have been interesting, and I may eventually decide to do that.  For now, I feel like I’ve moved on from this piece and am ready to work on something else, but I may return to it down the road at some point and see if a reflection can be added.

Overall I’m really pleased with how this turned out.  I enjoy doing pieces that have some reflection within, such as with my Christmas Ornaments still life in Oil Pastels, or my Self Portrait in Conte Crayon.  Somehow I enjoy the play of light and working out how colors may reflect within an object.

Most of the darks in this piece are ultramarine blue, raw umber, and some black mixed in.  I took colors mostly from my growing collection of Sennelier Oil pastels, however for some of the fine details I turned to a few new pieces of Mungyo oil pastels.  I also filled in some of the background with a gray color Mungyo.


Soon I plan to post the series of photos I took while working on this, to demonstrate the techniques involved in creating the drawing.  I would like to do more of an “Oil Pastel Techniques” series here on this blog, so maybe those photos can be a starting point.  But that’s for later, I don’t have the time right now to put that together.


I would like to mention a fantastic book that gave me some inspiration for working on this.
The Pastel Artist’s Handbook is an excellent handbook packed with information, giving techniques and demonstrations for working in pastels. While dedicated mostly to the soft pastels, there is a section on oil pastels, and most of the techniques and information in the book can be applied to any type of pastel.
I picked it up at a nearby Border’s closeout sale, but of course it can be found at Amazon too.


Finally, I tried something a bit new, as far as my environment and materials, while working on this oil pastels drawing. I taped the Pastelbord to an Artist sketch board, which gave me more room to rest my hands and arms while working on the piece. Here is a photo of what I mean:

Artists Sketch board

Doing this also made the piece itself more compatible, so that taking a break meant I could just set the whole sketch board off to the side.

Well it’s time for me to start the next piece! ;-)

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4 Comments on “ Oil Pastel Art – A Zippo Lighter ”

  • I like your Zippo Lighter, very good color. I’m very intersted in oil pastels; have accumulated a couple of brands but have yet to start a composition.
    Keep up the good work.

  • Thanx for the help and advice…I’m just taking a class in oil pastels and appreciate any info I can get.

  • Eric,

    I love your Zippo lighter oil pastels..It looks real and you did a good job on reflection as we all know reflection is hardest part of the painting sometimes..But you did a good job..Hoping you can share some techniques too..

    Grant Winter

  • I love your work! Beautiful attention to light. Amazing what beauty can be found in a simple item like a Zippo lighter. Makes you think about all the beauty in most of the things we just glance at. Hmm, best take a better look at things! Anyway, I have friends who collect Zippos–some are cigar smokers, some not. Some even display them in cases but never fill them or use them. They just like the designs. So this is a great gift for them. Check out intergalacticshipping.com because they have a nice selection of designs at great prices. Look under Sports, then Lighters. You might find something you’d like to paint and post for us to enjoy.

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