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 For Game, Animation and Film


Weiye Yin is a concept artist with over ten years of experience. He draws a variety of subjects but this book focuses on scene design, creating believable backgrounds that serve as a backdrop for stories in games and films.

The book is split into three parts. First is the introduction to scene design and how it differs from just painting background art. Second part looks at the principles and procedures. Third is a collection of demonstrations that look at how a few scenes are developed, namely Landscape, Environment, Urban Architecture, Atmosphere and Still Life.

It is a good introductory guide to scene design. You get tips on dealing with composition, lighting, colours, adding details, effects, doing drafts and even on dealing with clients.

The step-by-step demonstrations talks in depth about the conceptualization process, the considerations when handling different types of projects. Two of the case studies presents some tips on using 3DS Max for scene designs. Most, if not all, the examples are digital paintings, some with the use of 3D software.

It's more recommended to intermediate and advanced artist who already know the basics of painting and want to apply that knowledge to a different field.

Impeccable Scene Design: For Game, Animation and Film is available at Amazon (US | CA | UK | DE | FR | IT | ES | JP | CN) and Book Depository (US | UK)

 For Game, Animation and Film

 For Game, Animation and Film

 For Game, Animation and Film

 For Game, Animation and Film

 For Game, Animation and Film

 For Game, Animation and Film

 For Game, Animation and Film

 For Game, Animation and Film

 For Game, Animation and Film

 For Game, Animation and Film

 For Game, Animation and Film

 For Game, Animation and Film

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If you buy from any links on the blog, I get a little commission that helps me get more art books to feature.

This book is available at:
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 The Blueprints - cover

Images and description are from Amazon:

Star Wars: The Blueprints brings together, for the first time, the original blueprints created for the filming of the Star Wars Saga. Drawn from deep within the Lucasfilm Archives and combined with exhaustive and insightful commentary from best-selling author J. W. Rinzler, the collection maps in precise, vivid, and intricate detail the very genesis of the most enduring and beloved story ever to appear onscreen.

Star Wars: The Blueprints gives voice to the groundbreaking and brilliant engineers, designers, and artists that have, in film after film, created the most imaginative and iconic locales in the history of cinema. Melding science and art, these drawings giving birth to fantastic new worlds, ships, and creatures.

Most importantly, Blueprints shows how in bringing this extraordinary epic to life, the world of special effects as we know it was born. For the first time, here you will see the initial concepts behind such iconic Star Wars scenes as the Rebel blockade runner hallways, the bridge of General Grievous s flagship, the interior of the fastest hunk of junk in the Galaxy, and Jabba the Hutt's palace. Never before seen craftsmanship and artistry is evident whether floating on the Death Star, escaping on a speeder bike, or exploring the Tatooine Homestead.

Star Wars: The Blueprints is a limited edition. Only 5,000 hand-numbered English language copies will be available.

More information is available at www.theblueprintsbook.com

 The Blueprints - 01

 The Blueprints - 02

 The Blueprints - 03

 The Blueprints - 04

 The Blueprints - 05

Star Wars: The Blueprints -- Exclusive Book Teaser Trailer:

Star Wars: The Blueprints -- Exclusive Mini-Documentary Book Trailer:

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If you buy from any links on the blog, I get a little commission that helps me get more art books to feature.

This book is available at:
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Singa-planet

This book is the companion book for the Yamaguchi Akira exhibition Singa-planet presented by The Japan Foundation and the Japan Creative Centre in Singapore.

I bought this book because the premise is interesting. I wanted to see how Japanese artist Yamaguchi Akira interprets Singapore through his art. The series of drawings take up themes of HDB flats and other snippets of Singapore life.

Singa-planet is actually the name of the illustration (cropped) that appears on the cover. It's a block of HDB flats that appears to be built on a huge ship. It's a well drawn piece. I love the way the flats are designed with sloping roofs from old houses, particularly shophouses. Very imaginative with a good mix of new and old.

Singa-planet by Yamaguchi Akira
On the right page is the Merlion, the Singapore tourist icon, designed with mechanical wings.

Singa-planet by Yamaguchi Akira
A cross between a chicken rice stall and a bike. We have stuff like this, but they sell ice-cream instead, and the bike doesn't look so sporty.

Singa-planet by Yamaguchi Akira
A camouflaged tank. I don't know what it says about our army.

Singa-planet by Yamaguchi Akira
I like the way the flats are designed with the mashing of many smaller units. It looks like some ancient modern civilisation.

Singa-planet by Yamaguchi Akira
Some art of objects from the past.

Singa-planet by Yamaguchi Akira
An art installation that represents the HDB flats.

The first half of the book is on Singapore while the latter half looks at the artist's more recent work.

Singa-planet by Yamaguchi Akira
Titled Department Store: New Nihonbashi Mitsukoshi. This is probably some Japanese city. It's very intricately drawn with lots of detail.

Singa-planet by Yamaguchi Akira
A cross section of what might be going on inside.

Singa-planet by Yamaguchi Akira
A cross between a tram and houses.

This book has only 64 pages. It's too brief. The more impressive illustrations are the ones with all the details, but there are too few of them. Before you know it, you're on the last page. There are also some commentary pieces on Yamaguchi Akira by some other writers which took up quite a few pages. The pictures I've showed you is pretty much all the book has to offer, which isn't much.

In essence, this is like one of those thin exhibition books. So unless you're a follower of Yamaguchi Akira's work, it's not worth buying just to look at those few great paintings.

This book can be found at Kinokuniya Ngee Ann City, priced at $23.90, with GST. It's out of stock on Amazon Japan. I guess this book is printed in extremely limited copies.

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Akira Club

I didn't know that this book existed until very recently.

Akira Club is actually the English version of the Japanese edition Akira club: The memory of Akira lives on in our hearts that was published in 1995.

This English edition is translated and published by Dark Horse in 2007. It's a 256 page hardcover.

The book is all on the Akira manga. There's nothing on the animated movie except for some designs drawn for the laserdisc release.

It collects illustrations, preliminary sketches, all the title pages from the manga, promotional art and rejected art that were unpublished. It's pretty cool looking back at the works that were published in 1982. They were still using halftone dots to create grays. The art is great, and you can see that Otomo is amazing at drawing rubble and scenes of urban destruction.

If you have the manga editions, then you've seen all the title pages. This book includes a few unpublished ones. Majority are in black and white, some of them are coloured but not sure if they were coloured by Steve Oliff or Otomo. The commentary that goes with the title pages aren't related in any way, but just short musings of Otomo on what was happening to him that day, like his birthday or attending a friend's wedding.

What I enjoyed reading is the design commentary, talking about why sequences are arranged in a certain way, why some scenes don't work and have to be redrawn, what's difficult to draw. Most are just afterthoughts. There wasn't any information on his drawing techniques or production process though. And since the book doesn't include the animated movie, it doesn't talk about the differences between the manga and the movie.

This book is more for the Akira manga fans and those who like Otomo's art.

Akira Club is available at Amazon (US | CA | UK | DE | FR | IT | JP) and Book Depository (US | UK).

Akira Club
Cover designs for volume 2 of the manga.

Akira Club
Cover designs for volume 4 of the manga.

Akira Club
Cover designs for the Akira animation laserdisc.

Akira Club
Illustrations for T-shirts.

Akira Club
Title pages for episodes 006 and 007.

Akira Club
Title pages for episodes 19-33.

Akira Club
Title-page collection. Some of the pages are coloured by Steve Oliff.

Akira Club
Title pages for episode 067 and 068

Akira Club
Rejected title pages

Akira Club
Horizontal train posters and vertical bookshop posters.

Akira Club
Making foreign editions of Akira. It's not just about flipping pages. Some scenes had to be redrawn.

Akira Club
Layout drafts

Akira Club
Arranging the sequence of panels for the mass destruction.

Visit Amazon to check out more reviews.

If you buy from any links on the blog, I get a little commission that helps me get more art books to feature.

This book is available at:
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Ray Toh's Ideabook 2011

Here's an advance copy of a sketchbook from my artist friend, Ray Toh (aka torei).

The design is unique. It has a brown cardboard cover and 200 pages inside are brown as well. It comes with a customised wooden pencil that you can remove from the book spine. It's quite costly to get it printed but the result looks great. It's a cardboard cover so be careful of wrinkles from bending it — mine has a few already.

The Ideabook is a collection of sketches Ray did over the years, for conceptualising and exploring ideas. They are mainly character designs. The style is quite loose since they are at the drafting stage, with a couple with more details. It's interesting to look through the character sketches, some of them can be further developed and I wonder if they were. It would be cool to see them fully coloured and realised, maybe the next book.

This book will be available for sale at Singapore Toy, Games and Comic Convention 2011 on 20-21 August 2011, booth G24. I'm not sure how much he's going to price it yet. Another book on sale is Ray Toh: Voyage which he published previously.

He'll also be selling the book online, just email him (torei at raytoh.com) or send him a message on deviantART to find out more details like price and shipping.

Ray Toh's Ideabook 2011

Ray Toh's Ideabook 2011

Ray Toh's Ideabook 2011

Ray Toh's Ideabook 2011

Ray Toh's Ideabook 2011

Ray Toh's Ideabook 2011

Ray Toh's Ideabook 2011

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The Incal Classic Collection

Just want to say that this book is out. Again.

It was released previously in deluxe slipcase edition Dec 2010 and went out of stock quickly, very typical when you see Moebius' name on the cover.

So this new edition doesn't come with the slipcase, but is more affordable, and more importantly, available.

The colours are well restored from the original series, and the story is enjoyable. It really reminds me of the movie The Fifth Element, not the plot, but the overall feel of how a sci-fi world is like.

One of comics' greatest masterpieces illustrated by Moebius and written by Alexandro Jodorowsky. Together they present the classic adventure of sci-fi detective John Difool, a low class detective in a corrupt world. With the great darkness attacking the galaxy, John Difool races through the cosmos with his companions, which include his pet concrete bird, Deepo, and the Universe's greatest warrior, the Metabaron. - Amazon product description.

The Incal Classic Collection is available at Amazon.com currently.

The Incal Classic Collection

The Incal Classic Collection

The Incal Classic Collection

The Incal Classic Collection

The Incal Classic Collection

The Incal Classic Collection

The Incal Classic Collection

The Incal Classic Collection

The Incal Classic Collection

The Incal Classic Collection

The Incal Classic Collection

Visit Amazon to check out more reviews.

If you buy from any links on the blog, I get a little commission that helps me get more art books to feature.

This book is available at:
Amazon.com

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 Design Archive - cover

This book is already in stock on Amazon US.

If you don't already know, this book is the translated edition of the Japanese art book 戦場のヴァルキュリア (Valkyria Chronicles) Development Artworks.

At 400 pages, it's pretty thick. I'm hope that the publisher has improved the binding after the complaints for their other publications.

-

Images and book description below are from Udon:

VALKYRIA CHRONICLES: DESIGN ARCHIVE takes you behind the scenes, showcasing the gorgeous artwork of this truly epic world. The book features a hefty 400 pages of character designs, vehicle and weapon designs, maps, sketches, promotional art, and more. All this is accompanied by detailed background information about the world and its characters, plus creator commentary and interviews.

 Design Archive - screenshot 01

 Design Archive - screenshot 02

 Design Archive - screenshot 03

 Design Archive - screenshot 04

 Design Archive - screenshot 05

 Design Archive - screenshot 06

 Design Archive - screenshot 07

 Design Archive - screenshot 08

Visit Amazon to check out more reviews.

If you buy from any links on the blog, I get a little commission that helps me get more art books to feature.

This book is available at:
Amazon.com | Amazon.ca | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.de | Amazon.fr | Amazon.it | Amazon.co.jp | Amazon.cn | Bookdepository.com | Bookdepository.co.uk

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Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art

Images and book description are from Ankama Editions:

This bilingual artbook entirely created by the DOFUS team will allow you to explore every nook and cranny of the MMORPG’s first extension since the graphic redesign: Frigost. Flick through this collector’s edition to reveal the birth of the frozen continent’s visual universe, including its perilous dungeons, outlandish monsters and exclusive quests!

For Frigost is not just a new challenge for DOFUS players, it’s also a terrific graphic adventure… and now, you’re invited behind the scenes! Backgrounds, drafts, sketches, maps, notes, level design pictos, previously unreleased illustrations, artwork… Dive straight into the heart of Frigost’s creation and seize all of its secrets for yourself!

Wrap up warmly for this epic journey, you don’t want to g-g-gatch gold! Onward to Frigost!

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art is available at Amazon (US | CA | UK | DE | FR | IT).

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 01

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 02

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 03

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 04

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 05

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 06

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 07

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 08

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 09

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 10

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 11

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 12

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 13

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 14

Dofus 2.0 Frigost Art - 15

Visit Amazon to check out more reviews.

If you buy from any links on the blog, I get a little commission that helps me get more art books to feature.

This book is available at:
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Canon Scanner LiDE 210

This is the Canon CanonScan LiDE 210, a scanner I bought to scan my art work or illustrations consisting of pencil, pen, watercolour. This review is written for artists who are thinking of scanning their own art.

Build and basic features

It's a flatbed scanner about the same size as a thick A4 ring folder. Portable in a sense. There's a handy clip-on stand included for operating the scanner in a vertical position. So the scanner can take a small footprint on the table if needed.

Canon Scanner LiDE 210
The lid is non-removable, but can be lifted to a short height to fit a small book.

The scanner uses a single USB 2.0 cable for connection and power. That is really great. And it's the generic type USB cable that Canon has been using all along. The same cable I use for my Canon camera and USB card reader.

Canon Scanner LiDE 210
There are some buttons for quick scanning, copying to a printer, creating a PDF and emailing. It's good for those who want simplicity, but there are extra settings for the professionals in the software.

Scanning

Scanning is fast. It takes about 10 seconds to scan an A4 size document at 300dpi. It's so fast I usually don't scan a preview for cropping.

This scanner scan up to an incredible 4800dpi. Typical scans are at 300dpi. To get that high resolution, you've to type in the magic number yourself.

This image below, a 3 by 3cm swatch, is scanned at 4800dpi.

Scanned at 4800 dpi
I think the highest best working resolution is actually 2400dpi. If you're interested, you can load up the image above at 5940 by 6959 pixels (5MB).

New scanner

Winsor & Newton 24 Artist's Colour Chart

Custom Bijou Watercolour Mixes
The scan quality is great. The colours captured are very close to the actual material with very minor or no tweaking required, but as an artist you always tweak. The images above are straight from the scanner.

It's able to capture very good detail, down to the texture of a piece of watercolour paper.

Software

I'm using this on my Mac Pro with OS 10.5.8. I've also tried it on my office computer Windows XP (SP3).

The CD provided comes with a few software. I feel that they are a bit cluttered. It just doesn't look nice. I don't usually scan with the software provided, always preferring to go with scanning in Photoshop.

The most important software is the Canon ScanGear which is the interface for advanced scanning. Luckily, the interface for that is straightforward.

One of the main reasons I choose this scanner is because of the scanner driver, specifically the TWAIN plug-in. With the TWAIN plug-in, it means you can scan from Photoshop. When you're scanning from Photoshop via menu File->Import, you're presented with the ScanGear interface.

Setting Up

Windows XP
Setting up the printer under Windows XP is straightforward. You just pop in the disc and do an automatic or custom install of the software. Once you've installed the scanner driver, you can scan from Photoshop (works for me with CS4).

Mac OS
It requires more steps if you are to scan using Photoshop. I'm using Photoshop CS5. This section is actually to help me remember the steps to get it working in Photoshop CS5.

You've to install the Canon ScanGear and the TWAIN plug-in from the disc. They can also be found here: LiDE 210 product page and Photoshop CS5 Optional Plug-Ins for Mac (includes TWAIN) and Photoshop CS4 Optional Plug-Ins for Mac (includes TWAIN)

If you're using Photoshop CS4, it should be able to detect the scanner now.

For Photoshop CS5, an extra step is required. You need to open the software in 32 Bit Mode. Simply find the Photoshop CS5 application, right-click Get Info, then check the "Open in 32 Bit Mode" checkbox. The TWAIN plug-in was written in 32 Bit Mode, that's why.

If you want to import using Photoshop, this is the way to go. Otherwise, you can also use the Canon software provided.

Conclusion
This is a very fine scanner. It scans fast and the quality is great. The printer drivers included allows you to scan using Photoshop.

It's not too expensive so it's really value for money.

Visit Amazon to check out more reviews.

This scanner is available at:
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 Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods

I found this book at the library. I was standing at the art books section which was beside the travel guide section. As I turned around, I saw this book standing taller than the usual guide books. I picked it up because of the hand drawn title on the spine. Turns out it's a sketchbook travelogue.

This isn't the usual travel guide book that tells you where to go, it's one that Florent Chavouet drew to show you where he went. He's a French guy who's in Japan to accompany his girlfriend because she's working there.

It's a 208-page paperback filled with colour pencil drawn observations on the places he went. There are interesting notes on the people and culture and his many little adventures.

His colour pencil illustrations are nice, and gives Tokyo a very different look and feel. It's a light-hearted look at Tokyo as a tourist. I don't know if Tokyo is this colourful, but in the book it is.

The hand drawn maps are beautiful with icons and places of interest. On some pages, there are collages from things he collect, like cutout of manga panels and the bicycle parking tickets he got for parking in restricted areas.

It's an amusing book to check out.

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Tokyo on Foot: Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods is available on Amazon (US | CA | UK | DE | FR | IT | JP) and Bookdepository (US | UK).

 Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods

 Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods

 Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods

 Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods

 Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods

 Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods

 Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods

 Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods

 Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods

 Travels in the City's Most Colorful Neighborhoods

Visit Amazon to check out more reviews.

If you buy from any links on the blog, I get a little commission that helps me get more art books to feature.

This book is available at:
Amazon.com | Amazon.ca | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.de | Amazon.fr | Amazon.it | Amazon.co.jp | Bookdepository.com | Bookdepository.co.uk

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