EPIC POST: 8 Kick-Ass Artists That Will Inspire and Teach You.

I’m absolutely stoked that you’ve found this post.

We live in the information age, and as a result there’s a lot of great content sitting omnipotent in the beautiful bastion that is the internet. (Consequently, there’s also a great deal of garbage floating freely out there too.)

My aim with this post is to direct you to many of the resources I’ve stumbled across, sought madly, and have made tremendous gains from. The resources and creators I’m about to share with you shouldn’t be taken lightly.

These are Industry Professionals that have had a great deal of success, and deserve every last bit of it. They graciously share their valuable insight into what it means to be a professional artist, how to improve, and many, many other topics that only those with experience could come to know and bestow.

In short, if you’re not getting a healthy dose of content from the people on this list, you’re quite likely missing out.

I’ve no prior affiliation with any of these fine folks. I simply had to to my part to ensure that all of us up-an-coming artists have the tools we need to succeed.

Let’s take a look, shall we?

 Noah Bradley:

Noah Bradley

Not only is he one of the most business-savvy artists on the web. He’s created a proverbial two-pronged attack to help other artists pave their own success stories. Noah’s worked for Wizards of the Coast, AEG Games, and many other well-known clients that aspiring illustrators would sacrifice toes to draw for.  If you’re serious about becoming a professional illustrator that doesn’t work in-house at a studio, then Noah offers The Art Of Freelancing.

As obvious as it may seem, you need to have a pretty high degree of skill to be able to break into the field of professional illustration and/or concept art, so Noah also founded and Art Camp to help artists ascend to higher calibers of skill.

  Stapleton Kearns:

Stapleton Kearns

Stapleton Kearns is certainly different from the painters on this list in that he works exclusively in traditional mediums. Mr.Kearns is a professional landscape painter who trained classically under a master. This permitted him to ascend to high levels of skill while gaining a huge wealth of knowledge about art history. His blog is dedicated to unraveling the secrets of the old masters, and his archives stretch back a number of years! You could read one post a day, apply the lesson therein, and make quantum leaps in terms of understanding and ability.


His work can be found (and amazing, purchased) Here:


 Darren Yeow:

Darren Yeow

Darren Yeow is a veritable concept artist and freelancer extraordinaire. He’s had a very interesting journey to get to the level he’s at. Hundreds of artists have benefited largely from the applicable and actionable posts he’s archived on his Facebook. At the time of writing this post, Darren is currently in the process of creating a revolutionary sketching satchel. Aptly named “The Nomad” this beauty will likely be an indispensable tool in the arsenals of artists everywhere.

 Jon Schindette:

John Schindette

As one of the former art directors of Wizards of the Coast, Mr.Schindette has a plethora of knowledge to convey. He’s a multi-talented individual, and has worked with some of the absolute best the industry has to offer. His website The Art Order is a place wherein he’ll post challenges with a theme, and subsequently acquire many beautiful submissions as a result. I strongly urge you to read his posts in order to ascertain a better level of understanding about not only the industry, but what it means to be an artist working creatively.


He recently became the Creative Director of Treehouse Brand Stores.

 Matt Kohr:

Matt Kohr

A few years ago Matt Kohr had a vision. That vision was to offer free tutorials that catered to beginning artists everywhere–and it took the form of CtrlPaint. He covers many immutable artistic fundamentals with his minimalist teaching style; which is interest-grabbing and easily digestible. Matt works as a concept artist in the gaming field, and has handled many well-known IP’s like Ben 10 and Madagascar.

If you’re looking to get an even deeper grasp on what it means to conceptualize via digital painting, then the CtrlPaint Store should be your next stop. His free tutorials are numerous and well worth watching, but the premium tutorials are affordable and take things to a whole new echelon.


 Robh Ruppel:

Robh Ruppel

Writing  a succinct summary for an accomplished and well-versed artist like Robh Ruppel is no easy task, as his professional career has spanned over a 20 years. He’s worked in film, games, comics, art instruction, animation, and more. To get a glance at his multitudinous body of work you can check out http://www.robhruppel.com/

I’m serious, this gentleman has done it all and then some. He’s worked for man big name clients, Art Directed for Disney, and even taught at Art Center College of Design.

http://broadviewgraphics.blogspot.com/ is where Mr.Ruppel posts his processes, lessons, step-by-steps, and other goodies. just gleaning his blog for 10 minutes will behoove you to step up your understanding of art and it’s application.  Good thing there’s a lot to learn on there.

He also sells his immensely inspirational book Aspect Ratio— which should definitely find it’s way into your collection soon.

Shaddy Safadi:

Shaddy Safadi

When it comes to Film, Games, and Awesome Matte-painting prowess, Shaddy is an absolute Ace. He’s done work for phenomenal and critically acclaimed AAA titles like The Last of Us, and Ryse: Son of Rome.

The tutorials and and guidance that Shaddy’s generated will take not only take your work to the next level, but your understanding will supersede what you’re able to do. This is ideal as it gives you even more to aspire to. Not only is his delivery comedic and velvety, but his conveyance of the fundamentals is very graspable.


Chris Oatley:

Chris Oatley

If you’re interested in the more “animated” side of illustration and concept art, then Chris Oatley offers some powerful resources. Chris worked as a Concept Artist for Disney, where he gained  volumes of experience and skill. He also connected with other pros that he frequently collaborates with to provide amazing content.

Not only will he open your eyes to the industry, but he will lay out Real Solutions to the challenges that we artists face today. If you need to brush up on your skills in the concept art and digital painting categories, Oatley also provides an Academy.


There you have it. Check to see if any of these wondrous individuals and their starkly-useful content resonate with you. As I previously stated, there’s enough goodness jam-packed into this blog post to have you moving forward in terms of ability for years to come. Now make good use of what you’ve divulged, and paint your way to success.

Lastly, for more juicy content, feel free to subscribe to the Power Painters Newsletter. I’ll try to aggregate more amazing artists and their resources for you in the future, but I’m always sending out goodies to those on my list.

Happy Painting and Learning!