Kendra Gaines December 19th, 2011

Design in Motion: Inspiring Speed Art Videos

When designers use YouTube, most times they are looking for a great tutorial or looking to learn about the basics of a new topic as quickly as possible. Some of the most popular places to turn are speed art videos. Speed art videos are an overlooked source of inspiration for many designers in the community, though. Something we hope to change with this post. Sometimes we as designers aren't looking for just a new technique but an entirely new process to use to achieve something. That is where these videos score so highly among their viewers. They not only show an awesome finished product, but they also help other designers see how these 'experts' work in their desired workspace. Many times we can't appreciate someone's work without seeing and understanding the process. Fortunately speed art and process videos service many different genres of work from photo-manipulation in Photoshop, to three-dimensional work in Cinema4d. Oftentimes designers show how they use more than one program to create their finished designs. Today, we've gathered some of the greatest speed art videos from YouTube in an attempt to inspire and enlighten you. There's something that should cater to a little bit of everybody, so enjoy the videos!

The Videos

Robots (Dirty Politics Remix by DJ Pete Marriott) by whoiskgainez

The purpose of this video was to serve as a bit of promotion for the song used in the video. The artist (also the author) created work inspired by the song title and lyrics, creating robots from scratch in Adobe PhotoShop.  

NY After All by AlexanderKoshelkov

This is an absolutely amazing video of a photo-manipulation done with the help of some brushes and a couple of pictures. The finished artwork is absolutely amazing and the designer's ease in their workspace is crazy!  

Scarlett Johansson by Nico Di Mattia (macpulenta)

Nico Di Mattia gives us an example of how some artists do paintings in Photoshop with tablets and what ever other tools they desire. It's really amazing to see a body of work go from sketches to a wonderful, realistic painting.  

Transformers Movie Poster by SherbertMelon

Who doesn't love the the Transformers? This video is a wonderful photo-manip turned movie poster for the series. The depth of knowledge of the designer is absolutely mind blowing, as is the finished product.  

Kanye by IModernArtis

By now, you've been wowed by spectacular work. Sometimes, however, we don't need to be inspired by the most difficult work, but by simple work that makes sense. This designer goes through the process of creating a simple but wonderful graphic.  

Spiderman 3 by giando110188

Comic book characters are obviously a major source of inspiration and this artist shows us a wonderful and extremely realistic painting video. There are many things to learn from this video, even if you are not a digital painter. This is a must see, indeed.  


Watch this designer squeeze almost 3 hours of spectacular photo-manipulation work into 5 minutes. The focus here is on Paris, and with the help of some plugins, we get to see the creation of a completely different image.  

 Extreme car repair and tuning by AlexanderKoshelkov

If you've ever tuned into the MTV show, 'Pimp My Ride', this speed art video is definitely going to tickle your fancy. The designer here takes a picture of a no good car and takes it from nothing to something.  

Beyonce by S. Maguire (dscru)

This is easily one of the best speed painting videos you will find on YouTube. This artist is extremely talented and created an extremely realistic depiction of the superstar, Beyonce. This one is just absolutely amazing and inspiring.  

First Blood by SherbertMelon

As we can see, photo-manipulations and paintings are popularly displayed in speed art videos. This designer decided to show us his process when dealing with client work (strict graphic design work) as well.  


The designer of this destructive photo-manipulation decided to add a touch of humor on this piece. While it's still inspiring, it's nice to be able to chuckle at the finished result.  

Dragon by cgsbgs

This artist seems to demonstrate amazing control over what many would believe to be an extremely complex topic; dragons. This artist draws and paints a dragon from scratch that almost pops off the screen.  

NY Tsunami by MvHighway1

This artist makes photo-manipulation look extremely easy with this depiction of New York's last days. The finished piece is what some would call 'epic' and watching the video is almost like watching a magician work. Simply stunning.  

Moment 4 Life by whoiskgainez

An ode to a wonderful song, this artist (also the author) creates a simple, yet elegant piece from one photograph. Once again, there is inspiration in the process as well as the technique for those who enjoy simpler methods.  

Apple Forever by AlexanderKoshelkov

Many of the photo-manipulation speed videos are there to show the muscle of the designer. This designer created a piece that not only showcased his personal skill, but also showed his condolences for the passing of Steve Jobs. This is not only amazing, but heartfelt as well.  

Someone Like Adele by crazybonkers

This artist is extremely big on the photo-realistic look and is obviously very skilled at it. He seems to be much more detailed and intricate than most and his images are really spot on to the people in his portraits.  

Horse by A1R14

Though a pretty simple final image, the production of the design seems to be very intricate and a wonderful journey though blending. Oftentimes, it's hard for designers to get blending images just right, but this speed art video may help you out a bit the next time you are trying to blend several images.  

Music App by MalcovDesigns

Interface design is becoming increasingly popular as the demand for smartphones increases. It seems like many designers are shifting towards that focus and fortunately, this designer recorded his process for us to see and learn some things. The final design is absolutely beautiful.  

Anime Girl by kkamdia

Of course, when it comes to art, there are many different styles to choose from. This artist has decided to show us the process of creating anime characters in PhotoShop.  

Wolf by TheSpeedArtist

Aside from the amazing final image, another amazing thing about this video is that it is made entirely in GIMP. Far too often people underestimate the power of GIMP, but this video and this artist show that there can be no limitations on great work.  

Earth Collapse by LearnMeHow

It's one thing for a designer to be able to put different pictures together, but it's another when a designer can create their own renders and put them together. This designer takes us through their process, beginning with creating a render in 3Ds Max.  

Albert Einstein by Martin Missfeldt (mssfldt)

Another speed painting in Photoshop, but this time it isn't just a picture of a pop icon. This artist takes a stab at painting the very early innovator, Albert Einstein. The photo-realism is surprising, as if this was a picture taken.  

Do I Have a Soul by qMarka

This video shows an artist go through a completely creative process. This is great because we aren't just copying an already taken picture, we are watching an artist go through their individual process.  

Cartoon Cat Character by cgsbgs

This is another imaginative piece created by an artist. The ability to create the scenery and come from a completely creative place is always extremely interesting to see.  

Avant-Garde by MalcovDesigns

Sometimes as a designer you have to step outside the box and have the courage to do something bold and different. This designer did exactly that and recorded his process. This is a very inspiring design/photo-manipulation. (rb)

Kendra Gaines

Kendra Gaines is a young freelance designer for Norfolk, VA. Visit her online portfolio at and follow her on twitter @TheGainesColl.


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