Welcome to My Pastel World of Light & Colour!

The Pastel Academy Online

The Hub of Pastel Knowledge!

Do You Want to Draw and Paint in Pastel like a


For the First time, You can now learn from Heather Online, and join the thousands she has taught over the years to draw and develop their pastel techniques and go on to exhibit and become exhibiting artists!    What is Unique about the Academy?  It is based on feedback advice and assessments from Heather herself!

‘Unlike most of online courses academy doesn’t limit you with time. It will not give you ready to use instructions, that you can follow and get decent picture. But it would teach you basics, which you can use as your base for anything. And most important it would teach you think yourself and form your own style.’


I have found the Pastel Academy to be the most in-depth online learning process that I have been part of. The information, tuition and encouragement gained from belonging has already proved invaluable in filling in the gaps in my basic knowledge, which is showing in the work being produced as a result.

Jim Humphries

‘I used to think i was doing ok teaching myself, but the impact of learning through the academy is having a dramatic effect. Now that i’m learning about tonal values, colour theory and composition from an expert, with individual feedback and critique on my work, i’m coming on in leaps and bounds. Highly recommended! Come be a part of a wonderful community of fellow members and prepare to become obsessive about all things pastel!’

Elaine Whiteside

Let me Introduce myself:  I’m Heather Harman.

Welcome to My World of Light and Colour!

I am the founder of the Pastel Academy Online.     So What can the Academy do for you?!

Pastel has given me a wonderful career and my mission is to pass on my years of experience and skills to you,  and to give you the best possible grounding in the fundamentally important subjects that all good artists benefit from.

I am a fully trained teacher, as well as a massively experienced artist, who has taught pastel and  all the important things you need to know to literally thousands of beginners and improvers over 25 years, to exhibition standard.

Join the Academy and see your work go to unexpected heights!

X Heather

Check out some of the Academy Features in the video below!


MEMBERS WORK -Tonal Values Module

Members Work – Colour Theory Module

See what the members are saying about The Pastel Academy!

I am an artist from a small country town in Australia, mostly self taught. Australia is a big country and I am several hours travel from the city, where art lessons are easier to source.
Being self taught, I believe there to be large gaps in my knowledge of the basics and I look forward to developing my abilities and learning new skills; this has been difficult until now.
Here at the Academy, not only are the basics covered, there are programs to extend the intermediate and advanced artists alike. I look forward to this aspect of the Academy.
The courses are well structured and there is a lovely combination of written and video instructions.
Not only do we have access to feedback from the wonderfully talented Heather Harmon, but a very responsive forum where you can access feedback from other artists as well.
Valuable feedback that you aren’t able to get from You Tube video’s or books.
I am really excited about the ability to learn online, at a time that suits my lifestyle and still access wonderful feedback and support.
Kelli Moore

I am mainly self taught and as a result my learning curve is quite shallow. I want to know about all the techniques and ideas I have not come across yet. There are lots of UTube videos and quite a few books which all help but I do not believe they will match the contents of this site. Heather seems to have got everything you need to know to be a successful pastel artist and made it available here. She enables and coaches and I believe gives you the knowledge to succeed. Interaction with members and quality feedback to learn from, are what I am after as a member. The courses offer a well laid out structure with video as well as written tuition. I cannot wait to learn all I can, not just from Heather but from all the other members too. Peter Howells


‘I am mainly self taught, and  developing my abilities and learning new skills and techniques through the teaching of the Academy. I firmly believe that getting to grips with the basics of art, drawing, sketching, composition, colour theory etc will stand me in good stead in the development of my progress as an artist.

Here at the Academy Heather has put her vast experience as a successful artist, tutor, author and mentor at our disposal. The courses offered are well laid out using a combination of both written and video instruction, as well as a very responsive forum where you can get feedback from other artists as well as from Heather herself.

If you are serious about learning to use pastels correctly and about bettering yourself as an artist, and are willing to learn about the basics which is fundamental to the whole process, then let Heather and the Pastel Academy Online guide you on a roller-coaster of a journey as you discover your “Inner Monet”. We put both the Fun and the Mental into fundamental’.

Fiona Shaw


‘Every thing I hoped for…and more! Heather is a great instructor!’

Cindy Kohler

‘The Pastel Academy and its forums are a goldmine of friendly teaching and information for anybody serious about pastel art; and I believe would benefit greatly those who work in any medium.’


Having been a Charter member of the Pastel Academy, I am absolutely amazed at how much have learnt already.

The site is really easy to use with a very helpful ‘showing you your way around the Academy video’, on the main dashboard.    It is exciting that the Academy will soon be open to more members who can benefit from the whole experience.

Well done Heather Harman for all your hard work at making this happen!

Kris Heard

KayJay arts


I have found it to be a well thought out and precise working site, I am a fairly knowledgeable using pastels however, I learnt a lot more from watching the videos and following the instructional worksheets, they are easy to follow and explained in everyday terms.

I do recommend anyone to join and enjoy the teaching lessons of Heather Harman BA Hons and to tap into her knowledge and experience as a pastelist artist.

Les Gaston-Johnston

As a beginner who had fallen in love with pastels, I had been getting frustrated about how little I knew and where to get good instruction. In the Pastel Academy we have been learning foundational principles of art as well as how to apply them to pastels as a medium. It’s fun, it’s hard work and it’s very rewarding.


”Fantastic opportunity to learn pastels from the best teacher!”

Mandy B

The pastel Academy Online is an excellent place to be if you wish to learn about , and improve your pastel knowledge, and ability. Full of video tutorials supported by PDF lesson sheets, structured learning for all levels of ability and plenty of information on products and suppliers.

Jim Humphreys


“I have been a member for a few months now and have learnt so much, different techniques, tonal values, different mediums and papers, now learning colour theory.

Heather has a wonderful way of teaching that everyone can understand, easy instructions, wonderful constructive feedback and advice. Fantastic reference material and most of all no pressure and lots of fun.”


”Whether you feel you are a good artist or if you are not confident at all-The Pastel Academy is the right place to be! Regardless, how much knowledge and experience in pastel painting you already have, you will learn a lot in very friendly, easy going, fun atmosphere! ”


‘Are you ready to stop playing with pastels and keen to learn how to use them properly? Try the Pastel Academy online. Expect a bit of work, focused firm but fair criticism and a lot of fun.’

Eddie New

How many times have you thought how fantastic it would

be, to be able to pick the brains of a top

International Professional Pastel specialist?

  • A great vantage point to see all the important techniques, whenever you want, from the comfort of your own home.
  • Not just shuffling for a good view with a dozen other people on a workshop  ( when you can't all get the best view!)
  • And here is the best bit - you will then be able to ask questions about what you have seen!
  • A book or a DVD can't do that!.
  • The Pastel Academy covers all aspects of Pastel.
  • Pastel Pencils,  Hard Pastels and Soft Pastels and the Sanguine Trois Colour Technique
  • All in video format with downloadable information sheets where applicable.
  • Pencil drawing, charcoal and pen sketching also included.

Have you convinced yourself;

 ‘I’m not good enough to be an artist?


Well You are!

And my 25 Years experience teaching has proved it!

The Academy is designed around the sound principals of understanding the basics;  the fundamental principles of good painting, and all too often when learning as a beginner without any guidance, the basics get ignored.    Looking at some simple basic exercises, mainly in drawing, you might well progress in techniques you never knew you could do!      That is a very common scenario.

Usually the biggest obstacle new artists face is themselves.   But self-belief and confidence soon comes with your first successes! Don't blame your lack of knowledge for lack of talent!      But,  You must find the time to invest in YOU!   Your creative time is your personal time, which may one day become your income.

It is not lack of talent which might hold you back - it is lack of knowledge, experience and motivation!

For some it will be a longer journey than others, but for all it will be a worthwhile and satisfying journey!


Am I Too Old to Learn?  No You are not!



Art is ageless!

For many years most of the people in art classes have been retired, or returning to an old passion that they had to stop at some point in their lives, like when raising a family.    But as they have learnt - their work looks just as fabulous in a frame at their first exhibition as it would have done when they were 20!

I have taught artists to National exhibition level in their retirement.



Fed up of being stuck in a creative block?



Creative ‘blocks’ happen.  The key is to work with them.   Pastel is the medium many frustrated artists turn to!   Why?  Because it will not hinder your progress with technique issues before you have even got started.

When you see how your work progresses leaps and bounds, under my guidance and with the help and support of the Academy community, your creative blocks will get fewer and farther in between.   You will even learn something from them.

What is The Academy and What Can It Offer You?


What is unusual is that the Academy training is built around the core principles - the fundamental basics of good painting in any subject!     These basic principles will underpin the success of your work; far more than 'techniques'.

So the Academy training is  based on Heather's real life workshop training.    Unlike the majority of painting workshops which teach you to copy one specific painting of the tutors.   That approach has fundamental limitations.   Copying exercises have their place but should never form the core learning of any artist - you become frustrated because you don't know 'why' you are doing something on a painting, and cant do it on the next painting.     It is one step up from painting by numbers.

So your future artistic learning path could not be in better qualified or reputable hands.      Click here for more on Heather


How does The Academy work?

The Academy 'apprentices'  (beginners) will go straight into core training and projects.    Heather is completing a  variety of lessons/courses on a whole range of subjects which form the core fundamental basics painting principles, and these trainings will be added to the Academy resources as a permanent feature.  The Academy will then have periods dedicated to different 'themes'   around these basic principles.  For more advanced artists, you will be working on personal projects or within the Academy program.

There will be a dedicated Forum space to discussing your questions and results.   The Forum will be a lively and fun place to be!

Live Training

Live demonstrations will be completed on a one a month basis in all subjects, which will follow the Academy theme.

Projects set in advance and feedback given on the following live training.


Vinuela Sunset 3 - Harman
Summer Lavenda _ Harman

So Where Do I Start?

When you enrol – you will find an Academy Roadmap - which is  there to guide you through your options in your level.   you might be guided by me or prioritize one subject over another - but you will probably want to fit all the training in at some point.


For example:  for Beginners, it might be:

The Academy has its own  'Foundation course'.     This is designed to cover all bases in the basics so that you are prepared to advance and grow as an artist; at your own speed.    The basics really are the foundation to good work.     The Academy's tuition runs on the basis of a 'Theme' for a set amount of time - which might be for instance Colour Theory, and all work done in that period will concentrate and explore Colour Theory.     The same for Tonal Values and Composition.   We will explore the basics in both landscape and portrait.

Paco's House - Harman
Evening Campo - Harman
Sol e sombre - Harman

For more advanced pastelists:

Your choices might be based on what is of interest to you at the time. or you can join a themed program with Live Training/feedback. On the other hand you might choose to backtrack and fill in some of the gaps in your drawing or pastel knowledge,  You might even decide to plunge into a new subject area.

You might even be ready to embark on a teaching career as a pastel tutor?    Then in the Academy special training is there just for you (opening to be announced).

George & Toby - Harman

Have you got a growing pile of unused Art Materials in your cupboards?


Well we have all been there!     A growing pile of drawing and painting materials; a constant reminder of our once good intentions, and the belief that one day  ‘I really must get down to going to some classes!’     In truth though, pastel classes are not easy to find.

Well now is your chance to review your stock.     Get your motivation back and develop those artistic instincts you know you have!   The Academy will help you organize what you need and what you don't need.

Look forward to Improvements, progress and Inspirational breakthroughs.    Even new directions!


 Are You Ready To Start Learning?



Develop Those Rusty Drawing Skills, and Build your Confidence!

Get the Key to Better Pastel Techniques, and bust through those Creative Blocks!

Work Towards Your Own Art Career! Would you be a Pastel Teacher?

Exactly What Subjects Can I Learn From the Pastel Academy?


The Basics of Drawing and Sketching.    The basics of Painting:   Composition, Tonal Values, Colour Theory,   Landscape in Traditional and Impressionist Styles.  Portrait Drawing and Painting,  Animal Drawing and Painting.  Still Life.   Plein Air painting.   The Trois Crayon (Sanguine) technique. 

 Well You are in the right place –

Welcome to the Pastel Academy Online

Light is My Inspiration!

 Light in the sunlit pathways and deep shadows of the  Mediterranean landscape has been a real inspiration for me!

 Light gives our paintings ‘Life’!  I will Teach you to paint with Dramatic Light!


Light is My Inspiration!

The Gentle Light of Monets Garden in Giverny – one of the most wonderful places to be inspired!

 Gentle light can be moody and atmospheric!  I will Teach you to paint with Gentle Light!


Light is what gives my Portraits an inner illumination!  The light as it fall on the human form is one of my favourite things!

  I will Teach you to put the light into your portraiture!


Light is My Inspiration!

but so are dogs!

Light is what brings my portraits to Life!   Even our furry friends need to be bathed in light!

Meet Oodles – a rescue dog – given the ‘light’ treatment.

  I will Teach you to put the light into your animal portraiture!



Autumn - Aranjuez, Spain

Landscapes in soft pastel – Impressionist & Traditional

Thorie's Chocolate

Full Colour Pastel Portraiture – the techniques!


I love my Dogs! – Full colour paintings of our furry friends.


Without doubt – the best medium to learn the techniques of portraiture. Using just two colours!

Maria Bashkirtefff

The traditional fabulous Trois (Three) Crayon Method – Sanguine Pastel.

Elton in Russia - Graphite

Our Graphite friend – Full tonal graphite work.   Oh I love my sketchbook!

seashore charcoal

Pastel’s valuable sister – wonderful charcoal!  Wait till you see what I do ‘with’ charcoal and pastel!


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