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Book Review: The Art of Pixar – The Complete Colorscripts and Select Art from 25 Years of Animation

December 17, 2011

Released October 19th, 2011

Page count: 320 pages

Size: 11” x 9”

The Art of Pixar – The Complete Colorscripts and Select Art from 25 Years of Animation

By Amid Amidi

Foreword by John Lasseter

Published by Chronicle Books

Distributed by Raincoast Books (Canada)

Gift Idea

(This review is part a series of books/DVD’s that will be profiled as gift ideas over the next month.  All will be marked with the green/red ‘Gift Idea’ tag.)


The Art of Pixar: The Complete Colorscripts and Select Art from 25 Years of Animation Book Review by Erin V.  

For those who haven’t had the chance to pick up one of the art books from a previous Pixar film or seen a colorscript in person, you might not know to what the book refers.  Essentially a colorscript is a series or strip of small images that each represents a different scene from the film it is made for.  Used in development it spreads out the colours as they change with the emotions of the story.  Very quickly, you can see the arc of the film laid out very simply.  The foreword and introduction to The Art of Pixar explains it all very nicely, so it is well worth reading those pages before browsing through the rest of the book.

You see, the majority of The Art of Pixar is just images – which makes it very nice to flip through.  In fact, there are under ten pages with full text in total – John Lasseter’s one page foreword, and Amid Amidi’s six page introduction to the first section, ‘The Colorscripts’ (Features and Shorts), and two page introduction to section two, ‘The Worlds’.  Essentially, ‘The Colorscripts’ covers every film in the Pixar library from Toy Story to Cars 2, and all the shorts that colorscripts were drawn for including La Luna (the one part of the book I didn’t look through as I haven’t seen that short yet).  Then section two, ‘The Worlds,’ is a gallery of art from various stages of development from 1994 to 2010.

The one strange thing that I noticed as soon as I removed the shrink wrap is the fact that the book doesn’t have an actual cover jacket – rather, the orange strip that you can see in the cover image (above right) is the complete jacket.  In the position it comes, it hides art from the Finding Nemo and Up colorscripts, but it can be slid up and down if you want to change it’s position.  The design I only call strange because while holding the book it does slip around at times since it’s not a full jacket.  But the whole book is very artistically put together.  One thing I quite liked is the interesting visual style of this book where the first section is completely on black paper (allowing the colorscripts to stand out beautifully), while the second is all on white – it makes for a neat contrast.

Simply all in all I’d have to say that art and animation enthusiasts will really want to take a look through this one.  It is very well put together and the art is an inspiration to see presented.


To find out more about The Art of Pixar, or other books, visit Raincoast’s website hereThe Art of Pixar is available in stores now.  

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