Oil pastel is a painting and drawing medium with characteristics similar to pastels and wax crayons.
Unlike "soft" or "French" pastel sticks, which are made with a gum or methyl cellulose binder, oil pastels consist of pigment mixed with a non-drying oil and wax binder. The surface of an oil pastel painting is therefore less powdery, but more difficult to protect with a fixative. After application to a support, the oil pastel pigment can be manipulated with a brush moistened in turpentine or linseed oil.
Oil pastels were invented in 1924 by the Japanese teachers Rinzo Satake and Shuku Sasaki to give pupils greater freedom to express themselves by means of a cheap, colorful and easily appliable medium. They are the founders of the Sakura Cray-Pas Company.