Friday, August 5, 2016

Art Book Review: The Fantasy Artroom by Aaron Pocock


Genre: Art
160 p.
Publisher: Dover Publications
Published: 5/18/16
Source: NetGalley and publisher for review
Do you love to create imaginative artwork? Would you like to add depth and richness to your creations? Could you use fresh inspiration? Here is the book that will help you brush up on your skills and add new tricks and techniques to your repertoire. Sketching, line art, watercolors, mixed media, composition, rendering methods ― The Fantasy Artroom is your all-in-one traveling companion into the world of fantasy art.These step-by-step demonstrations offer easy-to-follow methods for drawing trees and landscapes; forming dwarves, witches, mermaids, centaurs, and other characters; and putting them all together into enchanting compositions. Introduce a new dimension to your drawing, line art, and watercolor images with this richly illustrated guide and its helpful exercises, tips, and suggestions.
My thoughts:

I enjoy fantasy books so, of course, I like fantasy artwork. I've read a few art books in this genre but I had not read this one. Dover often republishes older art books and some of them are classics. I had to find out what this author had to contribute.

My egalley was not quite in book format. A lot of the artwork became fragmented and some of the formatting in the wording was odd. I have no doubt that all of this is corrected in the published volume since Dover is well known to make sure older books are close to the format originally published. I only mentioned it here since it did not allow me to totally see the examples with the directions. I will try not to let it influence how I see the book overall.

I think there is a lot of sage advice to anyone in the art field in this book. I really liked how the advice on how to see things in nature in an artistic manner was presented and how it could be applied to fantasy. How to take things we know and both present it in how it is seen with fantastical elements applied and how to change it while still keeping with the feeling of realism. I think that is the key to fantasy artwork. Taking something that is just familiar enough and make it into something completely new and believable.

I also liked how he layered watercolor. Like his line work it is something that is taken slowly and builds upon itself. This book makes a good primer for anyone in any artistic field to have. Even fragmented as the book was for review, I could see it making my way onto my art shelf in physical form.

I give this book 4 stars. I recommend it to those that enjoy fantasy artwork. One of his influences is Arthur Rackham which is evident in the artwork presented. It has that same etherial draftsman appeal that Rackham perfected.

24 comments:

  1. This is quite interesting! I would imagine the physical copy would be gorgeous. I hope you'll be able to get a glimpse of it some time.

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    1. Plus it being Dover, probably won't cost an arm and a leg. :)

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  2. Very cool! Even though I'm not very artistic I still like reading these kinds of books.

    Karen @For What It's Worth

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    1. I did like his pictures... despite the formatting issues.

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  3. The cover is gorgeous I can just imagine what else is inside!

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  4. I'm not artistic in the least, and I'm not a very visual person at all, but I can admire and appreciate when something is really special. This sounds like just the thing.

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    1. I've seen what you have appreciated and I would not say you aren't artistic. Having an eye for that is also an art.

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  5. I am so bad at drawing, I'm not sure how I passed art class with an A. Glad you had fun with this!

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  6. If I could draw at all, I would certainly be reading this!

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  7. This would be awesome if one is thinking of maybe writing a fantasy novel or something like that. And I tend to be a visual person so I would want to see the illustrations just for that.

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    1. Actually fantasy artwork has it's own following without it being in a novel. :)

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  8. How cool, Melissa! I tried to draw, paint, and all that, but didn't have the patience for it. Plus I sucked. lol. But this really does look like a cool art book.

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  9. Sounds pretty good! It can be really hard formatting-wise with Negalley. I've had that with cookbooks a couple times.

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    1. Yea, I've had that with other books, but the visuals weren't as important in those books.

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  10. Oh this would be a fun work to do. :) Glad you enjoyed it.

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  11. I've never reviewed anything like this before! I love the cover. Good to see you appreciated the detail!

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    1. I love reviewing art books. :) This one was a good one.

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