If you’re an artist there are likely four places you love to visit: A museum, a gallery, an artist’s workshop, and a manufacturer of art supplies. I don’t work in pastels, but this visit to La Maison du Pastel is a fascinating look at the 300 year old heritage of handcrafting Henri Roché pastels. This two person operation makes more pastels by hand than any other pastel manufacturer.

From the Business Insider video description:

Henri Roché pastels are highly coveted for their particular texture, ability to adhere to most mediums, and intensity of colors. For over 300 years, La Maison du Pastel has handcrafted these pastels, used by artists like Degas and Monet. Today, the company is run and operated by just two women — Isabelle Roché, a distant relative of Henri Roché, and Margaret Zayer. But it’s taken them decades of work since Isabelle took over the dying company in 2000 to build it back up to where it is today. We visited their secret workshop in the French countryside to see how La Maison du Pastel is still standing.

This is a very fine mini-documentary produced by Business Insider.

Order a 12 piece set of Henri Roché pastels called Intense Dark.

They are expensive. This 12 piece set called Intense Dark runs $239.00 on Amazon.com. If you’re in to pastels and want to try what many artists say is the best pastel they’ve ever used, give a small set a try.

Order on Amazon.com