Justin Kunz is an American painter, concept artist, illustrator, professor, and designer of United States coins and medals.
Kunz worked as an Artist in the game development industry for twelve years. As a Senior 3D Environment Artist on the World of Warcraft development team at Blizzard Entertainment in Irvine, California, Kunz helped design the look and feel of the outdoor environments in The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm, and Mists of Pandaria, contributing concept illustrations, prop designs, character concepts, texture paintings, 3D models, and animated 3D effects. Prior to joining Blizzard, he was Lead Texture Artist at Disney Interactive Studios where he helped to create the Tak trilogy, Disney’s Chicken Little, Chicken Little: Ace in Action, and Meet the Robinsons. His clients include Blizzard, Disney, LEGO, Upper Deck, Ateam, Brigham Young University, the United States Mint, Novell, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and private collectors.
Justin holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in Painting from Laguna College of Art and Design and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Illustration from Brigham Young University, having studied with several highly respected artists including Jeremy Lipking, Joseph Todorovich, Perin Mahler, John Nava, Jon Swihart, Robert T. Barrett, and William Whitaker.
Kunz’s paintings have been included in exhibitions throughout the United States and received recognitions including a Most Original Award of Excellence in the Oil Painters of America 24th National Juried Exhibition, a Certificate of Excellence in the Portrait Society of America‘s International Portrait Competition, a Visitor’s Choice Award in the LDS Church History Museum‘s International Art Competition, and a Director’s Award at the Springville Museum of Art Spring Salon.
As a Master Designer in the United States Mint Artistic Infusion Program, his numismatic design credits include the 2017 American Liberty 225th Anniversary Gold Coin, 2016 American Liberty Silver Medal, St. Regis Mohawk Tribe Code Talkers Congressional Gold Medal, 2016 America the Beautiful Shawnee National Forest Quarter, 2015 American Liberty High Relief Gold Coin, Rosebud Sioux Tribe Congressional Gold Medal, 2014 Civil Rights Act of 1964 Commemorative Silver Dollar, 2009 Abraham Lincoln Commemorative Silver Dollar and the 2008 Andrew Jackson’s Liberty First Spouse Gold Coin.
He is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Design at Brigham Young University. His work is represented by Waterhouse Gallery in Santa Barbara, California, and Deseret Book Fine Art Gallery in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Justin lives with his wife, Heidi, and their four children in Utah, in the foothills of Mt. Timpanogos.
2017 American Liberty 225th Anniversary Gold Coin
Excerpts from unveiling event: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NTytMHKRfhg
Client unveiling a portrait by Justin Kunz, 2010
Salt Lake Tribune Article, 2004
US Mint Press Release, 2004
“This coin… the obverse is magnificent.” – Anonymous