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  1. #1
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    Sep 2009
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    Question about Jeff Jones Books

    Does anyone have the two later books on Jeffrey Jones? Any opinions on which is better? The Fenner's book The Art of Jeffrey Jones from 2002 gets better reviews for the quality of the images. The 2011 Jeffrey Jones a Life in Art by Cliff Biggers supposedly has a broader range of his work but the plates aren't as good. Any opinions from someone who has both?

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Thanked 359 Times in 305 Posts
    Man, that is a tough call!!

    First up - the reason they say the image quality isn't as good in A Life in Art is because Jeff fiddled with some of the images in photoshop and made them much darker and with a purplish cast - so it's not like a printing issue or anything. It's the artist making changes. They're not terrible, but if you've seen the original versions you know they're different. It seems like he was tired of looking at them and wanted to make some big changes, and he apparently was into heavy chiaroscuro with figures emerging from deep dark shadow at the time. Kinda cool looking, but they lost a lot of detail. He didn't do this to all the images, but a good handful of them - maybe 10 or 20? Not a deal breaker to me, but then I believe they were all originally included in the Fenner book so I have the original versions as well.

    Ok, down to the nitty gritty - A Life in Art is massive - it's about twice as thick as the Fenner book. It includes a lot of rare stuff that hasn't seen print before or was only glimpsed in odd publications once (things most people would never have seen). There's a section of pen and ink work, some tinted in watercolors, which includes a few Idyll and I'mage strips and similar stuff, there's a section with his paperback covers and also comic book covers, which have the text in place. I don't think the text detracts, since they were designed for it, and without it there would just be sort of blank areas (plus it was the 70's, and most of the text design was pretty awesome). Also a lot of sketches and his landscape paintings, which are gorgeous.

    I guess I'd say, if you're mostly interested in the paintings, the more familiar fantasy stuff he's mostly known for, stick with the Fenners. If you want to see a wider range of his work go with A Life.
    "Figure drawing prepares you for painting at a high level" - Jeff Watts


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  5. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Thanked 6,558 Times in 2,766 Posts
    Thanks for the thoughtful response, I think I will get the bigger book first and if I need more get the Fenner book down the line.

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