Justin Leitner was born in 1990 and is originally from Raleigh, North Carolina. Leitner received his BFA in Studio Art from Appalachian State University. He was originally taught portraiture and landscape techniques from artists Luana Luconi Winner and Judy Crane located at Artspace in Raleigh, NC. Leitner received the Polston Penland Scholarship to take an extensive summer course in veneer and wood piercing techniques. His work has been exhibited at wide range of art festivals, various art galleries like Visual Arts Exchange, Sertoma Arts Center, Artwalk, and the Nth Degree Gallery. Leitner was initially taught/ interested in how to paint portraits and landscapes. Much of his current work and practice focuses on the idea of Pareidolia, a psychological phenomenon involving vague and random stimulus that is perceived as significant. Leitner compares the concept of this recent body of work with the leisurely activity of looking at the clouds and finding new shapes within them. But instead of finding shapes in the clouds, Leitner finds new images and characters within the traditional landscapes and portraits that are his work. As the paint dries, he stares at a piece for hours until these characters appear to him. Leitner then outlines and draws these images, revealing a once hidden world to the viewer. The animation Justin Leitner creates is seen as a further extension of traditional painting.