Judd Mercer

Judd Mercer

Judd is a landscape and figurative painter based in Denver, Colorado. After attending art school for industrial design, he pursued a career in design and user experience. As the Creative Director and co-owner of Elevated Third, a Denver-based digital agency, he's lead Fortune 500 clients through discovery workshops as well as nurture and mentor young designers for 15+ years.

Judd began his painting journey with watercolor, studying in the field with world-renowned teachers such as Alvaro Castagnet, Joseph Zbukvic, and Herman Pekel. Tonal control and shape language were foundational skills he developed while on plein air and in the studio. Along the way, he discovered traditional opaque mediums that opened a new world of intensity and contrast. Moving to oil and gouache has offered him a more powerful toolset to explore light, color, and scale as he continues to explore an expressive style

While focusing primarily on landscape painting, Judd is also a competent illustrator with growing experience in the entertainment space. Design, concept art, and storyboarding allow me to pair traditional painting skills with emotional storytelling—concepts that help to better capture the story of a landscape.

Teaching Philosophy
"Having mentored designers professionally, I’ve come to realize that attitude and intent is extremely important for students, and a good teacher helps frame a mindset. Students can get easily discouraged early on and a teacher’s job is to break down the process into manageable (but challenging) parts. Students need to experience small successes to get excited about the process, rather than the goal of producing finished work. A commitment to sustained practice is really where success and joy comes from. I help people relax and let go of expectations to create an environment in which learning is easier—and more fun."

2007 BA Industrial Design, Art Institute of Colorado
2015 Plein Air Workshop with Alvaro Castagnet (Seattle, WA

Upcoming Courses