Pastels come in 4 forms: hard pastels, soft pastels, pastel pencils, and oil pastels. I only use soft chalk pastels as they are easy to smudge and blend. Working with pastels is not quite as straightforward as the other mediums. With pastels, you can achieve a wonderfully luscious, velvety texture. The deep, rich colors are easy to blend and when used well, they can have a splendid luminosity. Another advantage is that you don't need a lot of tools to work with pastels. Because pastels are not permanently fixed to the surface of the paper, they must be handled extremely carefully. Pastel art can be accidentally smudged all too easily. In addition, they can be quite messy on your fingers, hands, clothes, and work area. Pastel art cannot be properly "fixed" with a fixative spray without dulling and darkening the colour which I always find rather disappointing.