Character Design Masterclass Book One and Anatomey in Action

I finally received my two books called "Character Design Masterclass Book One" and "Anatomy in Action" from the group called Masters of Anatomy. They had already created and published one book before these second and third books. They started another Kickstarter campaign last year for these last two books and raised $266,405.  It coast me about $80 for the both of them and I am really impressed and happy with them. 

I especially enjoy looking at the Character Design Masterclass book the most.  It's wonderful to see Over 130  different designs of Robin Hood and the other major characters in that story. There is also about 23 pages devoted to the process of some of the artist.  I hope they continue to do more of these types of books, because it was well worth the money. 

The only two thing I wish they would have done different is have a hardbound cover, and have all of the artist show there process and many of their exploration design before their final designs instead of just the few they had at the first of the book.

I give the books a 4.5 out of 5

You can still buy them as well as their first book here...

Below is the description of  both of books and some of the artwork you will see inside.

Character Design Masterclass: Imagine being in a classroom made up of the greatest character designers in the world - artists who have worked for Disney, Pixar, DreamWorks, Sony Animation, Marvel and DC. Imagine what you could learn from seeing these incredible artists tackle challenging character design assignments. Character Design Master Class aims to improve your ability to design meaningful and modern characters. Over 130 of the world's greatest character designers were hired for this massive volume!

Anatomy In Action: This follow up to our anatomy series has over 550 final images and over 1300 rough images. It is the most comprehensive and beautiful collection of action anatomy ever produced. Our goal was to create a must have item for artists interested in comic books, graphic novels, and game design. That meant finding one of the best artist in the world at creating these types of images. Enter the great and talented Raul Moreno! The young, talented artist had exactly the kind of imagery we were looking for - bold, electric poses coupled with realistic anatomy. We did not want work heavy with shading, cross hatching and obscure detail. The art had to be as clean and light as air - the perfect type of imagery to learn from. The end result is a massive volume that contains hundreds of the most popular action poses used today - all redesigned by Raul to look more modern, accurate and dynamic than ever before.

Do you think you’ve seen it all from The SPA Studios?

SPA Studios will be sharing a lot of their amazing artwork that they have been creating over the next "days, weeks, and even months" as they said...  So head on over there and see what they will continue to share.  Here's the website -

The Art of Zootopia

The Art of Zootopia is another really well done book. It has 160 pages and shows exclusive behind-the-scenes pre-production artwork from the movie, with concept art, character designs, and a ton of background and layout artwork.
If you're a big fan of Borja Montoro, Cory Loftis, and Shiyoon Kim, like I am, than you will like this book because it shows a lot of their artwork. I wish there was a lot more character design artwork though. Out of a 160 page book there is roughly 47 pages give or take a page or two showing and talking about the character designs. The rest of the book focuses on backgrounds and layouts and the different areas in Zootopia.

 I was surprised that they used so many pages of props and set design. I know there was a whole heck of a lot more character per-production artwork they could have used rather than fill up pages of designs of streetlights, things that are on office desks, a jar off food, and signs that may or may not even be in the show. So I am a bit disappointed with the wasted opportunities to show more character artwork than things the designed to fill the background.

I give it 4 out of 5

 With The Art of Zootopia Kindle Edition of the book,  I was very disappointed due to the very low resolution all of the pictures were in... (I am the type of person that loves to zoom in and look at the wonderful details) so when I zoomed into the pictures it didn’t take long to see lots of distortion and pixilation (huge negative to have low resolution pictures in an art book, what in the world were they thinking?). And not only that, every time you click on a picture you get this horrible annoying “X” that impedes your view that never goes away until you click on it to close the picture. I hope they can fix this, and upload a higher resolution pictures soon or in the future, so I can maybe re upload the book at a later time with these important improvements.

I give the Kindle Edition of the book a very upsetting 1.5 out of 5 and with a warning to not by the Kindle version of the book until they fix these problems. I don’t understand why they can’t just use the same graphic design format that the book is in and have it be really high resolution, and without having to click on the picture with that annoying “X’ in the way.

The Art of Kung Fu Panda 3

The Art of Kung Fu Panda 3 is the third book of the film series. It has 168 pages and shows exclusive behind-the-scenes pre-production artwork from the movie, with concept art, character designs, interviews the artists.

I really have enjoined looking through this book, it has tons of artwork from Nico Marlet the main Character Designer on all the Kung Fu Panda films.  Like I said before Tracey, did a great job finding some wonderful artwork to show in this book. The artwork is crisp and sharp with lots of detail. I was able to receive the green light to show some of the artwork from the book down below. I hope you enjoy.  

I give it 4.7 out of 5 


Photo provided by Insight Editions from The Art of Kung Fu Panda 3. © 2016 DreamWorks Animation LLC. All rights reserved. 


There are just a few more hours left on the Dragon's Lair movie pitch crowd funding on Indiegogo The crowd funding has already way passed it's goal, so if you want a lot of cool things for really cheap price as well as helping out Don Bluth bring Drangon's Lair to the big screen, than you better get over there now and contribute before the few hours are up.

For example if you just contribute $20, you will get
  1. The complete set of ten Don Bluth's TOONTALK magazines in digital format. Plus "Animation: One way to approach it" animation manual in digital format. A 39-page animation hand-out exclusively for Don Bluth animation Master Classes.
  2. An exclusive password-protected hyperlink to our studio blog. Plus, video updates on our progress as well as a "thank you" credit on our website.
  3. The Art of Storyboard and The Art of Animation Drawing digital books. These books are currently out-of-print but now you can have them both in digital format!
  4. 3 Video tutorials by Don Bluth on using perspective and how to draw Hands & Eyes as downloadable video.

So you get all of that for just $20.  I personally put in a lot more for the extra stuff, because I loved those Dragon's Lair games growing up, and I want to finally see it as a film. To help celebrate I uploaded a long 16 minute per-production animation of Dragons Lair 2 (see below).  It has lots of rough animation in it, which I love to see.

Illustrator's Guidebook by 21Draw

The people behind the very popular book 21Draw are putting together another awesome book called an Illustrator's Guidebook. It's a tutorial art book with lessons by industry legends who have worked for Disney, Marvel, DC, Dreamworks, Pixar & many more. The campaign for the book has way passed the pledge goal of $20,000 so it is a 100% funded already.
So head on over to Kickstarter here...

You only have 7 days left to get it and receive some pledge rewards as well. Every artist will want to get their hands on this book if it's anything like the popularity of their last one.

If you are wondering about the quality and the many talented artists that they have in their books, take a look at a few of the pages below from their last book 21Draw.  I still think you can buy that book here...