There are so many different colored pencil artists making so many different kinds of art.
I find it inspiring to think about the fact that so many different people do different things (with the same medium).
It is a testament to the spirit and creativity that each artist has in their possession.
When I set about making this list—I wanted to find different kinds of talent.
I wanted traditional artists, modern artists, and artists who made work that seemed unique to them.
I hope that you will not only be inspired by their work but will also remind yourself that it is our differences that make us special.
Through their work and diligence—these artists have become famous colored pencil artists that will inspire you.
In addition to featuring all these amazing color pencil artists, this guide will cover everything you need to know about colored pencil art—from choosing the right materials to advanced techniques that will take your art to the next level.
- 8 Ways to Find Drawing Inspiration That Will Make Drawing Easy
- Top 20 Art YouTube Channels You Do Not Want to Miss!
- 50 Realistic Artists That Will Inspire You to Create
- Top 50 Surrealistic Art Images That Are Absolutely Mind-Blowing
What You Need to Get Started
First things first, you gotta choose the right materials. There are tons of brands and types of colored pencils out there, so make sure you pick the right ones for you.
Look for quality, lightfastness, and color saturation.
Some of the best brands include Prismacolor, Faber-Castell, and Staedtler.
The paper you use is also important. Colored pencils work best on paper that’s smooth and has a little tooth, so the color sticks and the paper doesn’t deteriorate too quickly.
Experiment with different papers until you find one you like.
Understanding Color Theory
Before you start, it’s crucial to have a basic understanding of color theory. This includes the color wheel, color harmony, and the different shades and tints you can create by mixing colors.
Trust me, with a solid understanding of color theory, your art will be way more dynamic and sophisticated.
Basic Techniques for Colored Pencil Art
There are a bunch of different techniques you can use when creating colored pencil art.
Some of the basics include layering, blending, burnishing, and hatching—try each one out and see which one works best for you!
Advanced Techniques for Colored Pencil Art
Once you get the basics down, it’s time to move on to some advanced techniques.
This includes crosshatching, blending multiple colors, and creating gradients. With some practice and patience, you’ll be creating art that’s both beautiful and unique.
If you’re into art, you gotta check out colored pencils.
They are making a big comeback and for good reason. With high-quality colored pencils readily available, artists are creating some seriously sick pieces that show off their skills and creativity.
In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the top colored pencil artists in the biz and what makes their style so unique.
Best Colored Pencil Artists that Will Inspire You
01. Ann Kullberg
This amazingly talented artist is known for making unbelievably realistic works of art using color pencils.
She is one of the top colored pencil artists around that is making great art today.
One of the more famous colored pencil artists, her work is softer, more traditional than many others on the list. She is one to look up to if you are looking for a more classic, Americana-style.
I love the detail and texture that fills her artwork, especially with the added degree of realism.
Ann creates stunning detail that makes her colored pencil art memorable.
02. Nicole Caulfield
Some coloured pencil artists are known for their spirit, and Nicole is one of them.
She is beloved among colored pencils artists for being a fan favorite.
All variations of her artwork are amazing, but her Fanimals collection is something incredibly special.
She brings together the spirit of fandom culture with adorable animals!
03. Morgan Davidson
It is easy to see why this amazing artist has so many followers when you scroll through their page.
Among colored pencil artists, her work is iridescent and hyperrealistic yet alien.
Every work of art is otherworldly. This artist uses vibrant colors and thrilling amounts of detail for great works of art.
Photo by Sticker Mule
04. Arlene Steinberg
I am continuously impressed by these artists’ range of talent.
Arlene is one of the top colored pencil artists for colorful still lives, truly capturing a perfect balance of whimsy and realism.
She doesn’t hide her medium like some colored pencil artist, but lets it show its advantages.
She is one of the few coloured pencil artists who uses her pencils to create traditional art styles.
It is always amazing to see what incredible creation she will make next.
05. Wendy Blackwell
Some coloured pencil artists take their game to the next level and Wendy is one of them.
She uses heated surfaces with her coloured pencils, which allows her to create paintings with them.
I am continuously impressed by her style and creativity.
It blows my mind when I realize that her works were created using coloured pencils.
06. Anna Hammer
This Poland-raised artist is known for her striking portraits.
Anna is one of the best coloured pencil portrait artists known for fusing fashion into her artwork.
Her use of light and fine details in rendering hair and fur is amazing.
Though she always captures her subjects, she brings so much more to them.
Her choice of color and detail makes it easy to see why people love her.
Some coloured pencil artists are modern to the core and this artist is one of them.
I love seeing the vibrant and bold nature of each of their works of art.
One of the best colored pencil artists for contemporary, realistic designs, often using pop art imagery. Her ability to draw real human beings is stunning, with three-dimensional, realistic images.
Every single piece is striking and in your face in a way that I love.
08. Keith McDowell
This multitalented artist is known for working in various mediums but proudly states that coloured pencils are his passion.
Keith is one of our more famous coloured pencil artists on the list, and celebrities are one of his favorite subjects.
His style focuses on working from photographs, which he also takes.
This gives his work a unique sense of realism that I think shines through with his use of coloured pencils.
Photo by Daiga Ellaby
As an artist, Carola works in a variety of different mediums.
However, her coloured pencil drawings are something to marvel at.
The mesmerizing detail she puts in as a coloured pencil artist is wonderful, adding texture and detail to her works.
I love seeing the differences in style and focus that she brings.
The thing that stands out to me with Jessica’s work is the way that she captures the raw vibrancy of human nature.
I am continuously impressed by her works.
Though they differ in style, they never lack in spirit.
She has amazing colored pencil art that beautifully captures sea creatures, birds, and other forms of nature, as well as rendering amazing people.
11. Julie Podstolski
Julie’s work continuously takes my breath away, which is why I think she is one of the most talented coloured pencil artists around.
Julie’s works are known amongst colored pencils artists for its almost blurry, out of focus camera technique transferred into the medium of pencil crayons.
Her work highlights cultures from all around the world, capturing the spirit of contemporary life while recollecting their history and traditions.
Her work has this classical art feel that gives so much life to each piece.
The amount of detail that she puts into every piece blows my mind.
12. DL Friedman
I am in love with this artist’s work for several reasons, but I think the biggest is her use of color.
In every image, she finds a way to add so much depth with her color tones.
While not exclusively one among colored pencil landscape artists, her evocation of winter landscapes is one of the most poignant on our list.
It continuously provides a satisfying recreation of life and more.
So many of her works look as if they could be photographs.
I’m not sure which artist colored pencils DL uses, but she is able to get some amazing life-like illustrations of birds with them.
13. Cecile Baird
This particular artist leverages the color of coloured pencils to make amazing works of art.
The unbelievable photorealism of Cecile’s work is striking among pencil crayon artists, with vivid still lifes captured on stark black backgrounds.
She puts the colors first when it comes to making brilliant creations, and it makes her work shine.
14. Pat Averill
It is so much fun to look at these amazing recreations of life.
It is always so inspiring to look at Pat’s work and see the incredible hidden gems within each piece.
One of the best colored pencil landscape artists on our list, Pat captures the beauty of each season with the budding and fading of life in each landscape.
You can tell that this artist puts a staggering amount of focus on getting every part of the image exactly right.
It makes it easy to see why people love to see each new drawing!
Photo by Volodymyr Hryshchenko
15. Tobi Czumak
Some coloured pencil artists have specialties where they shine, and Tobi is one of them.
Though each of her works is stunning, her portraits are something else.
This amazing artist has a harrowing backstory that speaks to the true spirit of an artist.
I am humbled and amazed by the ways that she has taken what life has thrown at her and made beautiful art from it.
16. Becky Chan
I love this artist because she seems to love animals as much as I do.
With the artist colored pencils Becky uses, she creates stunning animal portraits that are nothing short of mesmerizing.
It makes it easy to fall in love with the spirit of her work because she creates each piece so well.
I feel like she views animals through the perfect lens and creates accordingly.
Some coloured pencil artists chase their true passion and she is one of them.
17. Paul Miller
This is another amazing artist who loves working with animal subjects.
One of the best color pencil artist in terms of realistic animal drawings, his work is hyperrealistic and vivid in color – almost hiding the fact that it’s colored pencils.
He is especially great at getting the shine of skins and eyes, truly making them pop on the page.
I am inspired by the realistic recreation of animals that this artist brings.
His work is something you have to see to truly believe.
18. Sema Martin
I love people who make art for other people and show their love for something at the same time.
Sema is known for her amazing pet portraits, and I have to say that I just love her style.
She is one of best coloured pencil portrait artists, who can create stunning animal renderings.
She mostly focuses on creating cats with meticulous fine details of each strand of fur.
As a color pencil artist, she uses the light strokes of color to render cat and dog fur perfectly, infusing each of their faces with great personality.
She brings animals to life in a way that preserves them forever.
19. Heather Rooney
When I saw this artist’s work, it pretty much blew my mind.
She has an amazing way of bringing together stunning designs with incredible talent.
Her celebrity portraits, much like all of her work, is nothing short of flawless.
I cannot overstate how amazed I am by her talent as well as her modern style.
20. Lie Hong
This is another amazing artist who focuses on celebrity portraits.
Within the community of pencil crayon artists, Lie’s work highlights the transcendent beauty of faces most of all.
This artist’s work captures the true spirit and glory of each famous individual that they draw.
I am always amazed by how much power this artist can pack into a drawing.
Photo by Hal Gatewood
21. Gloria Callahan
Something about this artist’s work just absolutely resonates with me.
Her beautiful ability to depict light and translucent is second to none amongst contemporary colored pencil artists, with a great connection to motifs such as seashells and fruit.
Her vivid still life imagery is shown beautifully through her amazing efforts.
22. Kristy Kutch
Some artists show passion in every line of their work, and I believe that is true for Kristy.
She does an amazing job of making beautiful creations using colored pencils, and each one has a piece of her in it.
I love the color schemes and ways that she works with her art!
23. Richard Tooley
This amazingly talented artist is known for his focus on still-life images.
One of the best color pencil artist in terms of these almost traditional, student-like images, he elevates them beyond the ability of even most painters.
Each time you look at a piece of his work, you won’t be able to believe that it is coloured pencil.
24. Veronica Winters
Everything about this colored pencil artist’s work speaks to me.
She not only does amazing work that is detailed and beautiful, but it is completely her own.
Not only one of the great contemporary colored pencil artists but her work is also inspired deeply by psychedelic artwork, with great geometric patterns and spiritual outlooks.
Time and time again, I am awed by just how many unique twists she can apply to her style.
It makes each drawing something truly special.
25. Maddy Swan
If there is one thing that can be said about this artist, it is that she preserves her subjects.
Working in many different mediums, including watercolor, and charcoal, and counting herself among colour pencil artists, she has a specialty in portraiture.
Her style manages to bring an honest spirit to every single portrait that she draws, and I love it.
26. Marco Mazzoni
Every once in a while you find an amazingly talented artist with a darker tone.
Mazzoni’s work is darker than a lot of works, but the amount of detail is amazing.
While not one of the most famous coloured pencil artists, his work shows an intense talent with lots of emotional expressions.
I am continuously in awe of the creativity and talent that goes into these works of art.
Photo by Neven Krcmarek
Some people are inspired by other works of great art and Adam is.
His work is often themed around fandom culture, and boy does he make it shine!
I love looking at the vibrant detail of his work.
Truly a talented coloured pencil artist, he loves to draw famous pop culture pictures, such as those from comic books and popular sci-fi and fantasy television shows.
He makes everything come to life in a completely new way.
28. Jasmina Susak
My favorite thing about Jasmina aside from her incredible talent is her subjects.
She works on a variety of different projects, and they never fail to impress.
Her soft portraits of celebrities and famous fictional characters portray her great talent as a colour pencil artist in depicting real faces.
Her versatility and raw talent pull through in each one.
This famous YouTube colored pencil artist is known for making many beautiful things.
Her colorful rendering of nature and wilderness creatures makes her one of the more unique color pencil artists on our list. Rachel’s ability to imbue detail into her fairytale-like settings is incredible and worth replicating.
As a bonus, she does all of it live as a gift to us. I love watching the way that she works and creates.
Her soft portraits of celebrities and famous fictional characters portray her great talent as a colour pencil artist in depicting real faces.
Her channel is the perfect source of inspiration!
30. Vera Curnow
I am in love with the way that this artist looks at life.
Their style changes from subject to subject, and each one is stunning.
One of her great abilities as a colour pencil artist is not blending all her colors together fully, allowing a prismatic spray of color to be seen up close that blends into an animal or portrait from far away.
I am always pleased to look at how this artist sees the world.
Through a unique lens and with an incredible amount of detail, Vera’s work does stand out.
31. Jesse Lane
Jesse Lane makes art that will stop your heart on sight.
The amount of talent present in this artist’s work is mind-blowing.
I consider Jesse to be a great source of inspiration for those who just need to look at something magnificent.
When it comes to seeing vivid and detailed artwork that you could fall into, this artist more than delivers.
If you pair this with the completely original subjects and worlds, it is impossible to look away.
32. Debra Yaun
My favorite thing about Debra’s work is the way that she seems to capture the innocence of humanity.
Her amazing portraits are known to bring about a serene quality in almost any subject.
Among colour pencil artists, she is one of the best at capturing moments of innocence and emotional expression in her subjects, often children.
She is further amazing at capturing the reflections in the water using colored pencils, a great feat in itself.
This is sometimes balanced by beautiful and playful nature.
Time and time again, I am inspired by her works.
33. Samantha Frye
With the combination of Samatha’s talent with the artist colored pencils she uses, she can create captivating felines and animals.
A colored pencil artist with a talent for evoking the real faces of animals, you feel like you could reach out and pet each fox, deer, and bird she creates.
Her rendering of fur and feathers is on a whole different level.
34. Cindy Wider
Cindy Wider is a straight-up talented colored pencil artist from the US who’s all about creating colorful landscapes). Her style is bold, bright, and full of intricate details and patterns.
Cindy draws inspiration from her travels and her love for nature, and her pieces are a celebration of the world around us.
35. Marjolein Bastin
Marjolein Bastin is a Dutch colored pencil artist who’s all about nature.
Her pieces are bursting with life and color and she uses her passion for the natural world to bring her subjects to life on paper. Marjolein’s art isn’t just visually stunning, it’s a tribute to her deep love for nature.
Creating great art requires dedication and passion and it’s inspiring to see great colored pencil art.
I believe that each of these artists shows those traits, which is why I find them to be so inspiring.
Whether you just love beautiful things, or you want to jumpstart your creativity, you can find a way to do so with these artists.
When you look through their collections, I hope that you are just as impressed as I was.
Are there color pencil artists on here you find most inspiring? Do you use colored pencils in your art?
Best Color Pencil Artist FAQ
How do successful colored pencil artists market and promote their work to a wider audience?
Successful colored pencil artists market their work to reach a wider audience. They use a combination of online presence, exhibitions, and collaborations (to build their brand and connect with potential buyers and fans). Their success in promotion lies in understanding their target audience and finding ways to reach them effectively.
How do top colored pencil artists continue to develop their skills and grow as artists over time?
Top colored pencil artists never stop improving. They take classes, get feedback, and study other artists to constantly level up their skills. They also experiment with new techniques and materials to keep pushing the boundaries of their work.
What sets the best colored pencil artists apart from others in the field?
The best colored pencil artists are the cream of the crop. They stand out with their mastery of the medium and their ability to create stunning pieces. These guys have a real eye for color and texture and they know how to bring their vision to life Whether they are creating realistic or imaginative pieces, they always bring their A-game and make their work truly stand out.
How do the best colored pencil artists use color to convey mood, emotion, and atmosphere in their work?
The best colored pencil artists use color to evoke mood and emotion in their work. They understand the power of different hues, shades and tones -using this knowledge to craft pieces with unique atmospheres. Their expertise in color theory allows them to create truly captivating works.