8 Wildlife Realism Artists I Admire

Share This

There are many traditional artists who inspire me and whom I admire.  These artists are the masters of wildlife realism.  They have incredible skill, and their artworks show great depth of knowledge for anatomy and proportion such that their subjects look very photo realistic.  They employ wonderful details of feathers and fur, depth of highlight and shadow, and expressive faces.  Even though all of these artists draw or paint similar subjects, they all have their own unique style.  Some of these artists are world renowned and well known, and others are less well known but just as skilled.  Many of these amazing artists are self taught, and do not have a formal art degree.  I hope one day to be as great as these masters.

Rebecca Latham

Scarlet Macaw Preening, 9in x 12in, opaque and transparent watercolor on board, ©Rebecca Latham

Scarlet Macaw Preening, 9in x 12in, opaque and transparent watercolor on board, ©Rebecca Latham

Rebecca Latham paints a wide range of animal subjects in watercolors, from wolves to birds to wild cats.  Her vivid animal portraits are so realistic, with such fine details and depth of colors and shadow, but also they have a softness about them that gives them a dream-like quality.

Her style of painting is called “miniature painting”.  This means that her art is highly detailed.  This is a very old style of  art that dates back to the time of illuminated scripts. Even though it is called Miniature, it does not mean small, and the paintings can be any size. 

Rebecca is a graduate of the Beartooth School of Art, and studied under such wildlife masters as Carl Brenders, Robert Bateman, John Banovich and Daniel Smith.  Her Facebook Page features more of her art than she has on her website.

Esther Van Hulsen

“Forest Queen” Esther Van Hulsen
Copic Markers and colored pencil on Fabriano paper, 40 x 30 cm

Esther Van Hulsen is an artist in Norway who does amazingly photo-realistic animal paintings and drawings. Her portfolio is varied, from wolves and birds to dinosaurs and prehistoric creatures.  She uses a variety of traditional media, but her colored pencil works really speak to me.  Her Deviantart Gallery has more images than her website. 

Her amazing attention to detail and the depth-of-field of her backgrounds really sets her apart as a colored pencil artist.   Her drawings are amazingly photorealistic, yet full of life and color at the same time.  Although I love all of her work, her wolves are indeed my favorite.

Guy Coheleach

“Soul Companion” Guy Coheleach

Guy Coheleach has always been a favorite of mine, since I was very young.  His big cats and wolves series have always stood out to me. Not only are they beautifully painted and realistic, but they have so much life in them.  His works have been exhibited all over the world, and have received numerous awards.  He is an avid nature lover and world traveler, going to parks all over South America, North America, Africa and Europe to gather references for his amazing paintings.

Eric Wilson

Eric Wilson Serengeti Lion

‘Majesty’ Portrait of a Serengeti Lion.
Pastel Painting. 25 x 30 inches. Eric Wilson

Eric Wilson is another wildlife artist I greatly admire.  He is best known for this big cat paintings, especially lions and tigers.  He works primarily in pastels and oil paints. His paintings are beautiful detailed and realistic, and have lots of character.  The personality of each of his subjects just shines through the painting.  He is from Great Britain, and his art has won numerous awards. 

He has exhibitions in London, Germany and the United States.  His paintings have appeared in numerous publications, and are licensed for sale as fine art prints.  He has his own DVD pastel painting class, available on his website.

Collin Bogle

"Lone Wolf" Colin Bogle

“Lone Wolf” Collin Bogle

Collin Bogle is a well-known wildlife artist who paints wolves, big cats, wildlife, and flowers.  His portraits are amazingly detailed and take advantage of light and shadow to create striking imagery.  His art style is instantly recognizable.  His artwork is very popular and has been licensed for sale in various forms, including art prints.  He never had a formal art education, being taught art by his father Lee Bogle.  His passion for nature and having a master artist for a father fueled his art career.  His artwork is represented in many galleries throughout the United States and Canada.

Heather Lara

Flamboyance Heather Lara Flamingo

“Flamboyance” Scratchboard and Ink. 8″ x’10” Heather Lara

Heather Lara is another scratchboard artist, whose colored pieces are amazingly detailed and realistic.  She is well known for her big cats, but also has amazing artwork of birds, wolves, bears and other wildlife.  She does not have an official degree in art, but instead in Biology.  She has taken scientific illustration classes which helped her develop her style as an artist.  Her artwork has won numerous awards and been featured in many art publications.  Her love for animals and nature shines through in her incredible portfolio, which showcases these beautiful animals in stunning detail and color.

Samuel Silva

Tiger – Bic Ballpoint Pen – Samuel Silva

Samuel Silva – is an incredible self-taught artist who creates super realistic drawings of people and animals with ballpoint pen.  The incredibly detailed art would look great in any medium, but the fact that he was able to pull it off in ballpoint pen, a medium not commonly used among artists, is astounding.  I continue to  be amazed by the level of detail and realism in his artwork.  It is truly proof that the skill is with the artist and not the medium.

Joe Kronenberg

“Junior” Medium: Oil on Masonite Size: 48 x 72 Joe Kronenberg

Joe Kronenberg is well known for his Native American art as well as his highly illuminated wildlife paintings, especially of wolves and bears.  He grew up in the Pacific Northwest, an area in which the wildlife and scenery influenced his paintings.  Although he attended art school, he left because he was not happy with the teaching methods.  So he left the art school, and after a long hiatus, taught himself how to paint with pastels and oil paints.  His luminous paintings have won many awards and are featured in galleries across the northwest.


For more artists I admire, please read the next blog article: Colorful, Psychedelic and Abstract Artists I Admire

The images in this blog are copyright to their respective artists. All images have been used with explicit permission of the artist. All rights reserved.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

four × 1 =

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.