What is Pencil Kings All About?

In a nutshell, we’re here to give you the support and guidance you need to take the next step in your journey as an artist.  Basically, if art matters to you, you matter to us!

How do we do this? We focus on providing three different types of support for artists:

Instruction

Our regular video tutorials and creative challenges are created with you in mind. We source the best tutors from all over the world to bring you exciting, engaging lessons – whatever your ability.

Advice

We know becoming an artist isn’t easy. That’s why we’re with you every step of the way to offer advice and answer any of your questions. Each member of our team is dedicated to helping you get the most from your art.

Community

Being an artist can be lonely. That’s why we’re working hard to build the friendliest, most supportive creative community you’ll find online. When you become a member, you also become one of our friends!

How Will You Learn How To Develop As An Artist?

Instruction comes in the form of complete courses taught by professional artists who’ve worked for some of the biggest names in the industry, such as Warner Bros., Dreamworks, Sony, EA and Activision.

Of course, we know there are lots of other places you can learn from, but here’s why we think our courses are different:

Our fun, high-quality courses show you exactly how to achieve your goals as an artist.

You can learn at your own pace while knowing that we’re with you every single step of the way.

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Each course is broken up into separate lessons so you can easily keep track of your progress.

What If I Need Help To Become An Artist?

Need advice? We’re right here! You can talk to us in our unique Pencil Kings private community and get feedback whenever you want.

And, because this community is only available to Pencil Kings members, you can rest assured that only our community manager, Michaela, and your fellow Pencil Kings members will see your work.

You’ll also get super-useful advice and tips through our regular blog posts, artist interviews on our Podcast, and regular mini email courses designed to target even the most pressing issues you’ll run into as an artist.

We all need a little support from time to time, and the Pencil Kings community is your secret weapon to help pull you through when times get tough.

Make new friends, make great art!

You don’t ever have to feel alone. Our members are always talking to each other and posting work inside the private community forums. You can make new friends and much, much more.

Community events, challenges and coaching calls give you the chance to interact as much as you like. It’s your call.

You can participate in live discussions or work together with the Pencil Kings team and your fellow community members to push yourself and your art to new heights.

Say ‘Hi’ To The Pencil Kings Team:

The site is run by a handful of people, all dedicated to helping you get the most from your art.

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Mitch – Creative Direction

Mitch originally founded the site and now helps set the tone and direction of things going forward.

You can regularly hear him interviewing artists on the Pencil Kings Podcasts. And, when you hit customer support with a stumper of a question, it’s usually Mitch you’ll be hearing back from!

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Lorraine – Project Management

Lorraine is like our very own Superwoman and uses her super powers of organization to keep this train running on the tracks and on time.

When not recruiting new artists for us to work with, she’s making sure all the team are always kept in the loop.

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Chris – Social Media & Content

Chris keeps our Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google Plus pages humming with exciting new content.

He enjoys a nice cup of tea and loves creating new graphics and articles for you to enjoy.

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Perry – Customer Support

Need help with any technical issues or your membership plan?

Perry is the man behind the scenes working hard to take care of any account issues or support questions you might have.

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Frank – Video Editing

Each new video tutorial is the result of hours of discussion with artists, filming and post-production.

Frank puts the polish on each of the video courses, adding music, graphics and other cool stuff to make sure our videos deliver the best possible training experience for you.

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Michaela – Community Manager 

Michaela is always on hand to help you with any questions about your art or the Pencil Kings site and community.

As a keen artist herself, she’s the perfect person to go to when you need some motivation or simply want to chat about your ideas.

Meet Your Instructors

Our instructors are all professional artists who started out just like you. Wanna meet them?

Laurie B!

Calgary-based artist and illustrator, Laurie B!, describes herself as a ‘kick-ass human being’ and we’re certainly with her on that!

Brian Wong

Canada-based storyboard artist and 3d layout artist, Brian Wong, has become famous for his work at Nelvana Studios.

Mitch Bowler

As founder of Pencil Kings, Mitch knows how it feels for artists starting out and he’s here to reach out whenever you need him.

Sourav Dhar

India-based digital matte painter and photographer, Sourav Dhar, is a true master of concept art and creating atmospheric environments.

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Francis Vallejo

Michigan-based artist and illustrator, Francis Vallejo, knows a thing or two about teaching – it’s his full-time gig (apart from making art, that is)!

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Sycra Yasin

Canada-based artist, Sycra Yasin, is already a huge hit on YouTube, so we’re thrilled to have him on board at Pencil Kings!

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Sergio Paez

Sergio Paez has worked with the world’s biggest animation studios, and he’s happy to share his wealth of storyboard art knowledge with Pencil Kings members.

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(Lois Van Baarle)

Better known to her scores of online fans as Loish, Lois Van Baarle is one of the most exciting digital artists working today.

Mikael Leger

French Canadian concept artist, Mikael, always  blows us away with his awesome speed-painting techniques and digital art skills.

Kirbi Fagan

Michigan based artist and illustrator, Kirbi, always puts a smile on our face with her infectious enthusiasm and epic skills in traditional and digital media.

When Did Pencil Kings Start?

We originally opened the site in October 2010, but we’ve been in the art education game for a while now.
Since 2006, we’ve been running other art websites, talking with new and experienced artists to understand how to give you the best ways to improve your skills.

We’ve come a long way from those early lessons and experiments. Now, we’re happy to give you a learning experience that’s always improving and at the forefront of online art education.

How is Pencil Kings Run?

As much as we can, we let you – the artist members – drive the direction we’re going in.

When the members wanted a Community, we found the best solution we could to provide that. Then, we went one better by adding a Community Manager to provide feedback and guidance.

When our members said they wanted more environment drawing and painting lessons, we went out and found qualified instructors to provide those lessons.

We also do our best to keep in touch with all our members regularly. This helps us understand any problems you’re having and enables us to pinpoint any areas where new courses are needed. Your input really counts and our Community meetings are there to address any problems for the benefit of everyone.

Where Is Pencil Kings Headed In The Future?

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We started with a website and a few courses. This led to a blog and even more courses, which led to a community and special training events, which led to a podcast.

Pencil Kings is all about you. We’ll continue to learn from you and all our members.

And, as more people help spread the word about what we’re trying to do here, we’ll continue to grow and provide even more value to all the artists of the world.

In short, we’re better with you on our team! It may sound corny, but we believe the sky really is the limit when we all come together as artists to leverage our resources and experience.

Is Pencil Kings Membership Right for You?

You’re in the right place if…

… you’ve been looking to get back into art.

…you’re trying to push your skills to the next level but are a bit unsure as to which steps you should take next.

…you’ve just graduated or you’re looking for a way to keep your skills sharp. We’ve got heaps of advice to help you take your artistic career to the next stage.

…you’ve been feeling lonely on your artistic journey. Our regular online Community events will help keep you in touch with what our other members are up to. Together, we’ll help you break out of your comfort zone and give you the support you need to make amazing breakthroughs.