Funded! This project was successfully funded on November 14, 2012.

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Our mission is to teach professional illustration to aspiring artists and help them make a living doing what they love.

Every kid drew pictures until someone told them they couldn’t.
Millions of people wanted to become artists when they grew up,
but they were told that being an artist is not a "real job."
Only a few of them will actually make it as professional artists.
It doesn't have to end this way.

We want to make this story end differently for these aspiring illustrators and artists by teaching online courses that will help them improve their craft and earn a living doing what they love.

Update: What we'll do with extra funding

Thanks to your generous support, we’ve met and exceeded our initial goal! Now we want to take things to the next level so we’ve set a series of stretch goals that will make the Lamp Post Guild an even richer learning environment for aspiring artists everywhere. Check them out:

Thanks so much for helping us spread the word!

THE COURSES (now funded!)

We need your help to launch the first three courses that will form the beginning of an online art school called The Lamp Post Guild. In each of these courses, we'll teach high-level concepts and step-by-step processes that will help you think and work like a professional illustrator. As professional illustrators ourselves, we’ve learned these things the hard way and want to pass that knowledge on to you at a price you won’t have to go into debt for.

Each online course will include:
  • A clear path of step-by-step lessons to complete at your own pace
  • High-quality video demonstrations of techniques and concepts
  • Digital resources and art assets to help with your projects (Photoshop brushes, textures, reference artwork, etc.)
  • Opportunities to share your work and receive critique from your class
  • Carefully chosen readings related to the course topic
  • Opportunities to discuss technique and concepts with your class
  • A signed certificate of completion once you've finished the course
  • Lifetime access to the course content

Our goals are to make these courses affordable (wer'e thinking $99-$150) and available to anyone in the world.

Note: By supporting this project on Kickstarter, you can get early, priority access to the courses for yourself or you may gift the courses to a friend or family member!



From our own educational and professional experience, we’re confident that these courses will form a great start helping illustrators improve their work and make more money doing what they love. 

THE TEAM

We’re a group of artists, designers, and technology wizards:

Our long-haired teacher, Cory Godbey, has illustrated picture books, book covers, and animated shorts for HarperCollins, Random House, Archaia, The Jim Henson Company, Prudential Insurance, Microsoft Zune, and many other international publishers.

Cory’s work has been accepted into various annuals including the Society of Illustrators Annual as well as Spectrum: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art. His short graphic novel stories can be found in the award-winning, Eisner-nominated Flight graphic novel anthologies.

Cory seeks to tell stories with his work and loves to draw monsters. To see more  visit corygodbey.com.

Justin, our resident viking teacher, began his professional career as the Illustration Director and cofounder of Portland Studios Inc. Throughout his career, Justin has illustrated books, posters, animations, and video games for Dreamworks, Warner Brothers, Disney, HarperCollins, Penguin Books, Pyr, Little Brown Books, Thomas Nelson, Ligonier, Sony, and Mad Magazine.

Justin's work is regularly featured in Spectrum Fantastic Art and has appeared in the Society of Illustrators Annuals: Expose and Flight. Justin also contributes educational articles to ImagineFX and Muddycolors.

His work has received several awards including an Ippy Award for his work in Beowulf: Book One — Grendel the Ghastly, a 2009 Chelsey Award for Best Monochrome, and the Silver Award from Spectrum Fantastic Arts in 2012. Apart from his freelance illustration work, Justin also gives lectures and demonstrations at universities and conventions throughout the country. To see more of his work visit justingerard.com.

Our teacher from the dark side, Chris Koelle, has illustrated dozens of books, graphic novels, and award-winning documentaries. His latest tour de force, the fully illustrated Book of Revelation, will be released on November 6th by Zondervan. Chris enjoys listening to obscure music, smoking a pipe, and walking amongst old trees. He lives and works in South Carolina with his wife Annie, who is also an artist, and their two children, Marshall and Pearl. See more of his work at chriskoelle.com

Now to introduce The Nerds who put the "online" in Online Art School. 

Mark and Paul Johnson cut their teeth as interactive designers and developers working alongside Justin, Cory, and Chris at Portland Studios. In 2012 they launched Pathwright, a modern platform for education that’s been used to deliver over 10,000 online courses to date. 

Greg Taylor is an experienced software engineer who keeps the courses running smoothly even when thousands of students are trying to submit their homework all at once.

Justin Hall is a designer and teacher with a fresh Master of Fine Arts degree and is passionate about the arts and education. He makes Pathwright and these courses look beautiful.

Mark, Paul, Greg, and Justin are working as producers for the Lamp Post Guild courses. Currently they're building on their Pathwright platform to make these courses the most beautiful and useful online art courses ever created.

To learn more about Pathwright, visit Pathwright.com.

FUNDING

Producing high-quality online courses carries a significant up-front cost, so we’ll need your help to get started. Kickstarter funds will go towards:

  • Designing, writing, and editing the core curriculum for each course
  • Filming and editing the demonstration videos and lessons
  • Recording and editing the audio tracks with the artists' commentary and tips for each demonstration
  • Preparing interactive exercises and projects to help you practice each concept
  • Publishing the content within the online education platform
We humbly ask for your support.


REWARDS

PLEASE HELP US CHANGE ART EDUCATION

With education costs skyrocketing and art budgets getting cut, we’re in a situation where more and more talented artists (many with art degrees) are giving up on the idea that they can make a living doing what they love most. Not only is this tragic for them, but it's also tragic for everyone who will experience less art in the world. It doesn’t have to end this way.

Our little team is eager to massively improve art education, and we think this will be a great first step. Will you help us?

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

We'll be facing the challenge of creating great video demonstrations and other original educational content for each course. Each of the artists has created educational content and taught workshops or courses before, so we know what we're up against. We've also partnered with a professional video production company to make sure the videos are top notch.

The second challenge will be offering the content online in an interactive, easy-to-use format. For this, we've got the Pathwright team onboard who will deploy all of the courses to their online education platform, which has already delivered full courses to thousands of people.

FAQ

  • The courses are entirely self-paced so you can start and finish them as fast or slow as you like.

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  • We're not entirely sure just yet, but we want to make them affordable. Our current aim is to launch them somewhere between $99 and $149 each.

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  • Yes! If you back a reward level that includes a course, just let us know who you'd like to gift it to and we'll set that up.

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  • We recommend that you have at least a basic level drawing ability to follow along. While the art produced in the demonstration videos is at the professional level, the principles, processess, and tips shared are widely applicable to almost any skill level. We're teaching professionalism first, with technique only shown in demonstrations.

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  • None of the courses will require advanced materials. However, a digital version of Photoshop is highly recommended as that's the software being used in the demonstration videos. For Justin and Chris's courses, a Wacom tablet and access to a scanner is recommended as well.

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  • If the project gets funded, we're aiming to publish the courses by February 2013. Note that some courses may go up before the others.

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    You, sir or madam, will receive our sincere thanks, exclusive project updates + your very own illuminated, golden, digital llama courtesy of Justin Gerard.

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    You'll get an awesome digital art pack with desktop and mobile wallpapers illustrated by the artists + some digital brushes and textures from the artists + all previous rewards.

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    ONE Course of your choice for you or a friend + all previous rewards. Now we're talking!

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    For this pledge level only: exclusive early access to the Lamp Post Guild website with opportunity to give feedback to the artists and get feedback from them + all previous rewards.

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    TWO Courses of your choice for you or a friend + all previous DIGITAL rewards.

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    This is where it gets really good! You'll receive TWO Courses of your choice for you or a friend + an exclusive Lamp Post Guild Collector Coin + all previous rewards.

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    For this generous gift, you'll receive your choice of a signed Fine Art Print from one of the artists + all previous rewards.

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    All THREE Courses of your choice for you or a friend + all previous DIGITAL rewards.

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    In addition to the satisfaction of being an amazing human being, you're going to get ALL THREE free courses for you AND three more to give away to a lucky friend or family member + two Artist Sketchbooks signed by Cory & Justin + all previous rewards.

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    22 backers Limited (3 left of 25)

    Lifetime access to the Lamp Post Guild including ALL of the current and future Courses and community features + a special “Lifetime Backer” badge on your profile + all previous DIGITAL rewards.

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    ORIGINAL 5x7 Pencil Drawing: in addition to our undying love, you're going to get an original 5x7 pencil drawing of any topic you want from the Lamp Post Guild Artist of your choice + you'll be listed as an official Lamp Post Guild Producer on the website + LIFETIME ACCESS to the Lamp Post Guild and all future courses. Note that the original drawing comes with this reward level only.

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    ORIGINAL Watercolor by Cory Godbey: Pick a character or theme from the Menagerie or Hidden People Sketchbooks and receive an original 9x12 watercolor painting done custom for you by Cory Godbey + LIFETIME ACCESS to the Lamp Post Guild and all future courses + all previous rewards. Note that the original watercolor comes with this reward level only.

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    ORIGINAL Drawing + Giclée Print from Chris Koelle: Pick a biblical theme or topic and receive an original, framed 9x12 giclée print along with the original drawing done custom for you by Chris Koelle + LIFETIME ACCESS to the Lamp Post Guild and all future courses + all previous rewards. Note that the original Giclée Print comes with this reward level only.

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    ORIGINAL Oil Painting by Justin Gerard: Pick any (non-copyright) character from Justin Gerard's body of work and receive an original, framed 9x12 oil painting of the character by Justin + LIFETIME ACCESS to the Lamp Post Guild and all future courses + all previous rewards. Note that the original Oil Painting comes with this reward level only.

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Funding period

- (30 days)