Jul 23, 2011

My Growing Art Book Collection + Review♥


Sooo I decided to post up a little update on my artbooks so far. Since I have absolutely no sense in money-handling, I spend almost all my money on pointless items and things. Usually, the items turn out to be useless, but the books are one of the very few exceptions.

There's a total of 41 art books that I currently own. I can't find one, and my mom is currently borrowing two, for her painting studies. I'll review some of my favourite ones, and rate each one with pluses, since stars turn out too small (+). Please understand, this is only my opinion, not a professional review. I find some books strong in some things, but weak in others. This is simply to explain what I find each of them has as good and bad points.

+ + + + + Great

+ + + + Good

+ + + Average

+ +Not Worth It

+ Bad

The Full List of Books:

Avatar the Last Airbender - Art of the Animated Series by Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzco + + + + + (beautiful book, lots of wonderful concepts. Explores a wide variery of things, including character design, layout, background, colours, special effects, animation break downs and etc)

Victorian Fashions & Costumes from Harper's Bazar + + + + (great references, I just wish there were more male outfits)

History of Costume by Wolfgang Bruhn (Russian) + + + + (also great references, some cultures could have more exploration)

The Illusion of Life by Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston + + + + (I love everything, but I just wish there were more sketches and studies shown, rather than the finished product almost everywhere)

Animator's Survival Kit by Richard + + + + + (I adore this book, from cover to cover. So much 'golden' information - a must have for every animator)

Shot by Shot by Steven D. Katz + (this is a very depressing book indeed. Besides completely boring the reader with a very large amount of useless information, I found that the author was basically "beating around the bush" for at least 10-15 pages, for what could have been expained in one. Not worth the buy whatsoever. Nice storyboard images though)

Cartoon Animation by Preston Blair + + + + (great images, great explanations. I wish I could give it 5 stars, but two things bother me - 1 the cover - it's hideous. you wouldn't even give it a second glance if not for the neone colours, and 2 - I just wish there was a little more diversity in style, however, I realise that is a lot to ask for from just one book. So it's almost 5 stars, just the cover is ugly)

Elemental Magic by Gilland + + + 1/2 ( I could almost give this book a 4 stars, but it's not quite there yet. Beautiful art, wonderful break downs, but it just wasn't worth $55, for one huge image per page. The book could have been condensed and could cover more)

Scribbling 3 by Dean Yeagle + + + + (wonderful art as always, basically a dispaly of works. great use of simple line. However, characters all have the same face + body, just different hair and eye colour. Wonderful, various additions of animal and male character design helped save this book)

Mandy Godiva by Dean Yeagle + + + 1/2 (great display of works, a little too thin for my liking)

Melange by Dean Yeagle + + + + + (I find this book to be the best out of all of Mr. Yeagle's publishings. It covers the biggest amount of works he's done, including character design, cartoonized life-drawings, personal art, and playboy magazine features)

Celtic Faeries by Jean-Baptist Monge + + + + (very stylized book, with very stylized art. Beautiful work, very detailed, wonderful inspiration to artists. It's a shame it had to be in French. I had to google and translate everything)

Mucha by Frances Lincoln + + + + (wide variety of works, very high-quality printing. i just wish it included more of his posterized art)

Complete Guide to Drawingby Giovanni Civardi + + + (very traditionalized approach, very 'robotic classic', nice life-drawing suggestions, good for traditional illustrators rather than animators)

Dawing for Begginers by Peter Partington + + + (also very basic, good for study - just ok)

How To Draw What You See by De Reyna + + + (main focus is on landscape and scenery, good for perspective study, wouldn't use it for anything else though)

How To Draw Animals by Jack Hamm + + + + (ugliest cover ever, beautiful images inside. This is where the term don't judge a book by it's cover really steps in. The study notes, roughs, tips and tricks in this book are extremely helpful. I study this on a regular basis)

The Weatherly Guide to Drawing Animals by Joe Weatherly + + + + + (wonderful book, great use of line and movement, simplicity. Overall, just great. Beautiful sketches of course)

The Art of Animal Character Design by David Coleman + + + + (great book, lots of inspiration, however, it could use just some more explanation with how to apply shapes and form to animals. I mean no offense in my statement, but the author/artist sound 'cocky' to an extent in his writing. It is mainly a display of works. Very beautiful nonetheless)

Drawing Animals by Victor Perard + + + (simple, little, thin book with nice images)

PR3 The Hallowed Seam by James Jean + + + 1/2 (beloved by many, hated by others, very nice collection of sketches and drawings. great use of stylized line and movement. i can't say anything bad, only that it's not really a style I'm drawn towards. Thank goodness I got it for free)

The Art of Storyboard by Don Bluth + + + + 1/2 (not the best use of colour for the cover, but on the inside this man displays genius. I find the storyboards absolutely wonderful. This book does exactly what it should, explain, teach, show. Very informative, nice images)

Disney Dogs + + + 1/2 (if you are into character design, this is a great little book to have. Very simple, very basic, very cute. Two downsides - barely any background on the dogs, barely [if any] rough or structure lines)

Encyclopedia of Walt Disney's Animated Characters by John Grant + + + (big, heavy book, with lots of writing. I read it all, but the information is often times dull or maybe just very obvious with things like 'plot line of this movie'. Overall, just a nice coffee book to list through

The Art of Tangled by Jeff Kurti + + + + + (I am not judging this by the movie, I am only judging this as a book. Absolutely stunning concept art. Great variety of color-study, character design, layout and setting, animation roughs and keys, just a wonderful book, with wonderful, colourful, very detailed images)

Disney Magic Artist Lilo & Stitch }

Disney Magic Artist Ratatouille } + + (great books for little kids, nothing new learned here, nice drawings though)

Disney Magic Artist Brother Bear }

Disney The Lion King - Giant Leap + + + (great studies and concept - very vague colour sketches for the most part)

Disney Dossiers - Files of Character from Walt Disney Studio by Jeff Kurti + + + + (cute book, nice background checks for most Disney characters. Not as an art book, but just as a disney-fan piece, it's nice)

Encyclopedia of Drawing by Nigel Reese (Russian) + + + 1/2 (simple, basic, cute art - best for ages around 11-15)

Fantasy Volume 1 + + + (nice inspirational images, display of works)

Wendling + + + + (I admire this artist's work, I find it very unique. Nice variety, good use of colour, just good)

Fantasy Art Expedition by Finlay Cowan + + + (I almost wanted to give it a 4, but couldn't. Most images have that "cheap-photoshop" technique look, however, great concepts, very nice idea, and good research done)

Fantasy Art Templates + + + + (unique character design ideas, very interesting, lots of amazing looking art; display of work)

Anatomy for Fantasy Artists + + + (not a big fan of this one, also that "cheap PS look" for most images, however it has a nice collection of art from all kinds of different artists. It's worth a look, not a buy)

World Costumes by Angela Bradshaw + + (very old book, it's just alright, very basic and barely explored)

Well, for now that is all, I will add more as I either get more books, or find my other books. Hopefully, someone might find this helpful. If you have any recommendations please feel free to tell me as well. For now, I shall go sleep and try to endure the heat.

1 comment:

  1. AMAZING REVIEWWW OuO Thanks for sharing! This is gonna be extra helpful as I scrape up money together for just getting the books I need, while drooling over the books I will get in the future. <3