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Mechanika: Creating the Art of Science Fiction with Doug Chiang [Paperback]

Doug Chiang
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Book Description

June 27 2008

Delve into a world of imagination populated with giant robots, strange vehicles, alien creatures and other fantastic inventions. For generations artists have created imagery destined for the entertainment of others, and now you can too.

Revered science fiction artist and film designer, Doug Chiang, reveals the thought processes and techniques he used working on blockbusters such as the Star Wars prequels, War of the Worlds, Terminator, and Beowulf. You'll learn from Chiang's visionary experience as he shares his design processes, giving expert advice and showcasing the groundbreaking style that has earned his creations a spot in the Brooklyn Museum, Houston Museum of Fine Art and the Tokyo National Museum.

Inside you'll discover:

  • 30+ lessons for creating out-of-this-world science fiction scenes in the style featured in films, books, comics, toys and games using both traditional and digital techniques
  • Details and tips for using Adobe Photoshop to conceive, design, draw and enhance your creations
  • 25 step-by-step demonstrations of outrageous robots, vehicles, creatures and environments with finished color images
  • Foreword by film producer/director Robert Zemeckis (Monster House, The Polar Express, Back to the Future, Beowulf)
With tips on everything from basic skills like blueline sketching and assembling a toolkit to conceptualization and painting for digital art, Mechanika has everything you need to get great results and make your science fiction worlds come alive!


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Product Description

About the Author

Currently Executive Vice President of ImageMovers Digital, a Walt Disney Company, Doug Chiang has earned an Academy Award, two British Academy Awards and a Clio Award. He joined Industrial Light and Magic in 1989 and Lucasfilm LTD in 1995, becoming creative director and visual effects art director. He has worked on many blockbuster films including Terminator 2, Forrest Gump, Jumanji, The Mask, Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace and Episode II: Attack of the Clones, Polar Express, and War of the Worlds. He has written and illustrated several books, including Robota (Chronicle Books 2003), which he created and co-wrote with Orson Scott Card. His artwork has been in major exhibitions around the world.
www.dchiang.com
www.imagemoversdigital.com


Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tutorials from a pro Feb. 12 2009
By Parka HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Length: 0:23 Mins
It's not very often you see a great concept artist come up with a tutorial book. Here, we have a great book by Doug Chiang. He's the concept artist for big movie hits like Star Wars, War of the Worlds and Terminator just to name a few.

In this book are 30 lessons and step-by-step tutorials for creating science fiction art, mainly robots. There are details and tips for using Photoshop.

Through these pages, one can see Doug Chiang's process of creating sci-fi concept art. It's always interesting to find out how other artist work, especially one of such high caliber.

His work has also appeared in other books like Robota, and The Art of Star Wars: The Revenge of the Sith.

There are more pictures of the book on my blog. Just visit my Amazon profile for the link.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very nice book ! Feb. 20 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
For those into concept art, this book is worth having. There are concept art exercises in the book for you to start building up a portfolio and challenging designs. A good book to have for inspiration and to put in your collection of concept art bookshelf.
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Format:Paperback
This is a very good book for the sci-fi/fantasy artist.

Doug goes through step by step processes starting from traditional sketch to felt pen, ink, airbrush, and sometimes to digital. The majority of his work is done traditionaly I'd have to say and as a digital artist myself this was a nice and enjoyable read that brought me back to doing more traditional work which is getting interesting. Everything Doug writes just makes sense and gave me better understanding on building up a concept using traditional tools.

For the price of this book on Amazon it's a no brainer; get it! You won't regret it!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  41 reviews
40 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tutorials from a pro Nov. 10 2008
By Parka - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
It's not very often you see a great concept artist come up with a tutorial book. Here, we have a great book by Doug Chiang. He's the concept artist for big movie hits like Star Wars, War of the Worlds and Terminator just to name a few.

In this book are 30 lessons and step-by-step tutorials for creating science fiction art, mainly robots. There are details and tips for using Photoshop.

Through these pages, one can see Doug Chiang's process of creating sci-fi concept art. It's always interesting to find out how other artist work, especially one of such high caliber.

His work has also appeared in other books like Robota, and The Art of Star Wars: The Revenge of the Sith.

(More pictures are available on my blog. Just visit my Amazon profile for the link.)
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth The Wait July 30 2008
By colie - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
For those of you who've seen the author's art in print or person, the stars are no surprise. If you haven't seen his work, this book not only showcases his talents and skills as a designer/renderer in finished pieces, it gives direct insight and instruction on how he gets there. From pencil sketch to marker render to digital finished product, Doug takes you through his approach to getting an idea onto a medium.

What seperates this book from other "how-to" books in this design field is it's engaging simplicity in execution. Doug's broken the book into easy-to-browse chapters that cover different techniques and design subject matter in each. This is to it's benefit, as each step encompasses not only fundamental techniques of execution, but Doug's insights on the design of the subject matter. There is little, if any, over-explaining. The instructional images do the talking with simple text accompanying each.

Did I mention it's really hard to find a good (if any) book on marker techniques? This one's the best I've seen. So if you've been thinking about trying markers as a new style, this is a must have.

An all-out great purchase and true bargain considering you get a concept design, multiple-technique, step-by-step package by a truly exceptional and highly respected industry artist.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended. June 19 2008
By Anonymous - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I've just finished reading this book, and I can confidently state that it is one of the best books available pertaining to the subject of creating science fiction art.

The author does an excellent job explaining both the technical aspects of the drawings, but also how he goes about the design process. There are dozens of designs explored, each emphasizing either a different approach or a different subject in a step-by-step manner.

There are other books of this nature available, but they are generally not as well thought out or organized as Mechanika. It seems like there was a real effort put into this book towards covering a wide variety of subjects in a detailed manner, and it really shows. The little tips sprinkled throughout the book make it invaluable.

This book should age well with the viewer, and long after all of the tips and techniques have been absorbed I imagine it will still be an excellent source of inspiration to thumb through from time to time.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Useful book July 15 2009
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
While this isn't an in depth book on drawing, it does give some useful advice on how you can start to go about creating your own work, using the book as a reference guide. Written by someone with a lot of experience of working in a professional environment, Doug talks about some of the basic principles for producing good work. Always encouraging to see that something which looks difficult and complex started out as a modest sketch. If you're going to be able to draw as well as this you need to spend a fair bit of time doing normal observational drawing, Doug has an excellent eye for form and perspective. You don't get this good just from working from photos or spending all your time in Photoshop.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Well Put Together Step-by-Step Book For Sci-Fi Art Sept. 15 2008
By J. London - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
After reading the author note at the beginning of the book the rest of the lessons fell in place. Chiang goes into concept design so clearly that I started to wonder,"Why didn't I think of that!" (Chiang's 20 years of experience will make you FEEL like that.) There is great insight into his process of science fiction design to the point where it made me eager to start some projects of my own. There is also a couple of great Photoshop tips you can use for digital painting which was made to be very simple. All I can say is that this is an excellent book/manual for anyone interested in creating their own science fiction art work.
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