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I've only recently starting picking up some of these, and I've had mixed reviews. I'm looking to pick up a few more, so I'm interested to hear what you guys like.
Art of Star Wars: Episode III - Amazingly good. I loved the layout, and the blurbs that accompanied an image almost always had a really great anecdote describing how it came about. Its always great to hear what was going through an artist's head while he was designing something. The art is shown by the dates it was assigned - before there was even a script in some parts - so you get a cool look at the movie itself evolving as Lucas tries to figure out what the fuck he's doing.
Art of Star Wars: Episode II - Bear in mind I bought this one AFTER the Episode III art book, so my expectations were very high. Unlike the Ep. III art book, this one had the art listed in chronology with the FILM - scene by scene - rather than when by when it was assigned/completed. The blurbs were disappointing, and rather than have the blurbs directly over/under the image in question, they were numbered - then you had to go find the impossibly tiny number hidden somewhere on the picture itself. Drove me insane. The art itself is brilliant, of course.
Boris Vallejo and Julie Bell Sketchbook - Decent, though the descriptions of the images were amazingly skimpy. It sometimes felt like a Dick and Jane book written by Bizarro. "Julie and Boris draw unicorn art picture. They am good at art. They heart art!"
A psuedo-"art of" book released by Design press Studio and Art Centre called "The Skillful Huntsman" goes through 3 weeks of faux pre-production on an imaginary production.
3 very skilled artists who annotate their processes and scott robertson who also lends an insightful comment on every piece.
I recommend anyone who's into production art to look into it.
Yeah any of the Art of Star Wars books are good. I also liked the Lord of The Ring versions of the "Art Of."
I actually havent seen to many "Art of," type books out there, I like them though ...
"As you may have noticed, Im not all here my self..."
Give me some love! JARheads SKETCHBOOK of DOOM!
The Art of Star Trek is pretty neat. Great descriptions, great in-jokes, and great backround stuff. They even have some pages dedicated to William Ware Theiss, the guy responsible for the rediculously revealing costumes of the Original Series. The guy who was quote as saying: "The sexiness of a costume is directly proportional to how likely it appears to be that it will fall off some time during the episode"
I have the Art of Star Wars Ep. II, it's great to look at (though I hear you on the tiny number thing. augh). The Art of Halo, The Art of The Matrix, and The Art of The Fellowship of the Ring are also some of my favourites
On a different note, I've also got The Art of Werewolf: the Apocalypse, an RPG game. Some really nice stuff from Steve Prescott and Ron Spencer in there.
EDIT: Does anyone know if there is a Half-Life art book? I think it's called 'Raising the Bar' or something like that.
I'm in posession of The Art Of Halo, although without any other 'art of' books I'm lost for comparisons... I can vouch for the comprehensive illustrations, though - heavy focus on characters rather than locations, unfortunately, but every stage of the main characters' development is shown starting from Halo's concept as an RTS game. Great for alien studies.
I think the only "art of..." book I own is the art of hellboy....filled to the brim with mignola goodness....
The Art Of Animal Drawing by Ken Hultgren See some scans here! Excellent for gesture drawing, charicature and basic movement ^_^
The Art of Totoro What can I say? I'm a sucker for Miyazaki's watercolors and Ghibli's background art. Really, any of the Studio Ghibliart books have yet to disappoint me.
The Art of THe Lion King Inspired me as a wee one to get into animation. Now that I look back on it, Chris Sander's concept art and color studies were really amazing in that book. Also check out The Art of Lilo and Stitch for more of Sander's goodness, there's some great watercolor work and linework of Nani
Boris & Julie Bell
and so many more I don't remember them all
I've been meaning to get Brom's Darkwerks for a while...
Paul Kidby's "Art of Discworld" is stunning ... his paintings and pencil drawings are, IMHO, perfect renditions of the characters in Pratchett's books.
The compilation "Art of Lord of the Rings" I find to be very good, Alan Lee's pencils are marvellous, and Jeremy Bennett's concept paintings have great colour choices.
I actually didn't like the Half-Life 2 "Raising the Bar" book as much as I expected. Viktor Antonov's designs were my favourite in there, but to be honest most of the concept work seems fairly low-quality to me. The final product of everything together in the game is just awesome, but a lot of the design work really doesn't do it for me. Still an interesting read, though.
The Art Of Carlos Huante: "Monstruo" and "Mas Creaturas" (my favoritest books)
Art Of Star Wars (all Six volumes),
Art Of LOTR's
"Colorvision" by Ron Cobb **If you can find this get it!! Awesome art book!**
Brom- Darkwerks & Offerings
Various Movie Art of:
Jurassic Park I & II
Planet of the Apes
Men in Black I & II
Disney "Art of"- Tarzan and Hercules
Pixar "Art of"- Bugs Life, Monsters Inc.,and Finding Nemo
Can't decide, I've seen and own a good deal of them and I like em all.
I mean if I could I'd buy them all.
There are 3 sides to every story. Yours, mine and THE TRUTH.
HalfLife 2: Raising the Bar
Well, I'm an animation major. Mine would be:
Art of The Lion King
Art of Lilo and Stitch
Art of Tarzan
Art of Aladain
Art of The Incredibles
Art of My Neighbor Totoro
Lots of my favorites in there. One I didn't see that I love:
The Art of Discworld by Paul Kidby
very whimsical, very well done. I love looking through this book. Beautiful work.
edit: Just saw that MoP mentioned it. Brilliant stuff in there eh?
my favourites from what I've got
Film art books:
Starwars 1-6 plus some 'technical' ones
hellboy tons of artwork
lord of the rings 1-3 and weapons and warfare and making the trilogy
The Matrix some really good multi page spreads
The Art of Robots
The Art of the Incredibles
Judge Dredd awful film, brilliant book
Goad The Many Moods of Phil Hale
Intron Depot 1 and 2 Masamune Shirow
Robota Doug Chiang
Wings of Twilight The Art of Michael Kaluta beautiful muchaesque style
I'm surprised no one has mentioned the Pixar books. My life would be impoverished without my ART OF MONSTERS INC book. (ART OF THE INCREDIBLES and NEMO are pretty fantastic, as well.)
Oh. My. God. I thought I was the *only* person in the universe that had that book! I've had mine for almost 20 years, and it's falling apart, but it is by far the pinacle of my art books. NONE has inspired me more than that one single book.Originally Posted by Stitchface
Awesome. Awesome book. Anything by Cobb. But that book rocks.
MoP's only gotten to look at my copy! I love all of Kidby's work, but I have to say I like his pencils in that book more than I liked the finished paintings. Especially his ones of Death and the Grim Squeaker. Just fantastic stuff all around.Originally Posted by lyon
I'm also a fan of the Art of Final Fantasy 9 book, and the three Art of the Lord of the Rings books. I've had my eye on the Art of the Matrix for a while at chapters, but it's so expensive, I haven't had the opportunity to pick it up yet.
Though it's not really an "art of" book, the Dinotopia books are amazing. I can't look at them without seeing new things every single time, and being floored. James Gurney is a man with some skills.
You guys peaked my curiousity on that Cobb "Colorvision" book, and I googled it - only to see that someone had bought a copy in good condition for 130 beans. Thats pretty amazing.
I really hadn't thought too much about video game art books, I'm going to have to look around for a few of those.
Thirded for Colorvision. It was one of my early prime motivator's as well.
And while I have a few art of books, the one I prize the most not only for it's sheer beauty but also for it's comprehensiveness and heft (for it's day) is A Look Back, featuring the art and a biography of Berni Wrightson.
Grave Sight Graphics: The Art of Eric Lofgren.
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i have the art of warcraft
it was a real impulse buy....i dont know...im not a huge fan..i mean its got nice pictures and stuff....but thats about it..its pretty costly
Mythology- the art of alex ross.
All i can say about this book is "omg" .