I received a set of Unison portrait pastels for Christmas and thought I’d find a subject where I could give them a road test. I had some images from my trip to South East Asia which caught some figures in the light – always a favourite subject of mine.

This is a compilation of a number of those images – ones of Buddhist monks and their initiates – and reflects a mindset I certainly get into myself, of being absorbed into activities which take away all sense of time. On talking to one Laotian monk in particular ( who engaged me in conversation just to practise his English) I came to the conclusion that they passed their life absorbed in worship, following rituals and were comforted by that routine. He did also say that many were monks for a short duration only and then activated the ejector seat to return to the secular world.

Other figurative paintings are available for sale on my website:


  1. Thanks Louise. I found it a bemusing religion. The guy I was talking to entered the monastery to get an education before he returned back into the world. I heard that if you became ordained your marriage prospects were better, when you left, than if you hadnt undergone religious training. So there were a few good reasons to pick up the robes.
    Yet our tour guide was a devout buddhist and she took in refugees and supported them through college off her own back.
    I didnt get a lot from my monk as he was more interested in the plight of Manchester United ( a big UK soccer club that is going through a rough patch) and he had watched the match the previous night and was interested in analysing that more than talking about his faith.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Unison’s ! Lucky YOU, Graham! Looks like you are really enjoying yourself with them.(…haven’t had my own pastels out in quite a while, you’re making me want to get them out, a bit!) what kind of ground are you using btw? Also, Happy New Year – hope it’s a good one 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Hilda, and happy New Year to you too. I do use pastels a lot particularly for life drawing but on papers. This was done on Clairefontaine pastel mat 30x40cm which is allows the build up of layers of pastel. Normally I use 50x65cm Murano or A1 Carnford papers but they dont take as much pastel as the mat does – well unless you spray it and go over when dry.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.