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Art + Anatomy book Recommendations

Journal Entry: Fri May 23, 2014, 12:54 PM

Edit: updating this for new followers who might want to see this :D
15 books I recommend for anatomy, art fundamental study and art inspiration. Please note that these are simply my personal recommendations and books that's helped me a lot in the past. 

I've taken photos for these books, so Here's a less image-heavy list (on tumblr)

This took so much longer than I first anticipated so I really hope people find this helpful cause, seriously, spending 3 days on this does not feel like it was worth it ^^;

edit: I'm putting the tl;dr list here first as a preview of the books I'm recommending. 

TL;DR List of books

Anatomy Books

Boing! Boing! Art Book Recommendations Boing! Boing! 

Anatomy Books

:star: An Atlas of Anatomy for Artists :star: |
One of the best anatomy books I've owned, and shows great draftsmanship from many old masters

:star: The Art of Animal Drawing :star: |
Really simple-to-understand animal anatomy book that breaks down animal forms in simple shapes and explanations

:bulletblue: Anatomy for the Artist :bulletblue: |
This book has some really good photo-references with really pretty models. There are also see-through paper that goes on top of some of the photos that has bones and sometimes muscles that goes on top. Pretty neat.

:bulletblue: Figure Drawing for All It's Worth :bulletblue: |
Andrew Loomis's books are all pretty great, I think. You can probably find his pdfs online but I find things on print easier to absorb for me and I tend to carry my books around. Anyways, this one has some great stuff on perspective and foreshortening.

Animation/ Illustration/ Concept art Skill-set books

Colour Theory

:star: Color and Light: A Guide for the Realist Painter :star: |
:+favlove:I strongly suggest this. Seriously, this is one of the best books I have ever bought. It's really great and really thorough. It's also one of the few art books I've read the text thoroughly front to back.

Concept Art

:bulletblue: The Skillful Huntsman :bulletblue: |
This one is really good if you want to go into concept art. It takes you through the steps of brainstorming to final product and there's a lot of great silhouettes to learn from.

Composition/ Storyboarding

:bulletblue: Dream Worlds: Production Design for Animation :bulletblue: |
Wonderful book on pre-production of animation, and covers from compositions to layout brainstorming, to storyboard colourscripts.


:bulletblue: The Animator's Survival Kit :bulletblue: |
A must-have for animation-beginners, this almost-400 page book is definitely worth your dime if you want to be an animator.

Beginner Perspective

:bulletblue: Perspective Made Easy :bulletblue: |
A small handbook for starting perspective, great for beginners and has lots of info on basic perspective rules and tricks. Also pretty cheap so that was a plus for me xD

Perspective and Design Fundamentals

:star: How to Draw: drawing and sketching objects and environments from your imagination :star: |
A 200+ paged book full of great stuff mainly about perspective as well as design and basic fundamental skills; good for artists of any level, really.

Inspiring Illustration Books

:bulletblue: Art of Pixar: The Complete Colour Script :bulletblue: |
Awesome collection of Pixar's colour scripts and illustrations. Great for colour inspiration

:bulletblue: Art of Tangled :bulletblue: |
Actually all of the art-of books are pretty amazing, and are full of character designs, background/layout designs, colourscripts etc.

:bulletblue: James Jean's Fable Cover Collection :bulletblue: |
I know this book is sold out right now but they might do a reprint again so if you don't have the money for it right now, keep an eye out. I remember the original price to be around $40 so it was definitely worth the beautiful illustrations inside. James Jean is one of my favourite illustrators so I just had to put this up here even though the book's sold out xD;

:bulletblue: Spectrum Collection :bulletblue: |
Any of Spectrum's collection of contemporary illustrations are all really great and very industry-standard. Great inspiration illustrations

:bulletblue: Bouguereau :bulletblue: |
I just had to add a master painter in there. Bouguereau is one of my absolute favourite painters along with John Sargent. Seriously, if you have a chance, get their books and do master-studies off of their paintings. They REALLY help with realism.
Thanks for looking~! If you made it to the end, here's a cookie~ :cookie:
If you only have a chance to get just one or two of these books, I've highlighted my top 4 with a star beside it....I tried to narrow it down but I couldn't narrow it down too much. Anyways, I think this list covers a wide range of stuff. 

tip: On top of studying anatomy, do some master studies (that's when you pick an artist you feel has really mastered their medium and skill level is off the roof, and you pick something they've drawn and copy it). They really help.

Add a Comment:
Kqina Featured By Owner Apr 26, 2018
Thank you for taking your time to make this list!
monmoshi Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
coool ,! :D
goosetooth Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
tysm! I'll be sure to get some of these ^^
zubair43 Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
is there a pdf file free to download  of george brigdmen's heads faces and features book?
Fantasytraveler Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
were you published?
TsukikoUme Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2016  Student Artist
Thank you so much for this! I started my own art challenge for myself because I really need to get back into drawing-it's been such a stress reliever.
I really need as many art books as possible and I'm going to try to get not just the ones you ⭐️-ed, but literally all of them.
Again, thank you for this post!
Megalomaniacaly Featured By Owner Jun 17, 2016  Student General Artist
Thank you so much for sharing this. I follow you on Insta and looked up your username and now I watch you on here. I love to improve my art and do realism art but 9 months I feel a times to give up, Been seeking up some books though, thanks so much for your recommendations! I will definitely check them out :)
Fuminz Featured By Owner Apr 2, 2016
thank you for sharing these books
GrunkieKong Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2016   General Artist
Thank ya for sharing these, really helpful
Vnessinhaah Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2016  Student General Artist
Thanks a lot!
Kiramu Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
thank you for posting this!! i want to become a medical illustrator and they rely on a lot of figure drawing! this will help a lot
LoveAnimals8 Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2016
Oh man, thanks a bunch!
crumblingmoon Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2016  Hobbyist
This is so helpful! It's really challenging to find great art books because the market is so saturated with sub-par books. 
Deviant294852 Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2016
Thank you for making this, this is very useful :D
YOSEILY Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
thanks for sharing this!!
JunkoTori Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
Just what I need, thank you so much! :TheClap: 
MyFantasiWorld Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oo, thanks for the share! These would be pretty helpful, since I tend to go back and improve my skills on certain fields of my art. =)
arrozblanco12 Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2016  Student General Artist
yevra Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you so much for the recommendations! I know I've added all but one or two to my own wishlist. ♥
Samy-Consu Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2016
wow really amazing all these books!!
DogeDays Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2016  Student
thanks so much for creating this list, i've bought a few books from it already and they've really helped me c: 
alelilie Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016
Thanks for creating this wonderful list! 
hrfarrington Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Professional General Artist
Thanks for the list, very handy! :D
BaconBandido Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016
Thanks a bunch!
Aerite Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
All of these are great! Thanks for sharing~
Catstudio7 Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you so much for sharing! :D You have all those books?! That's a great collection. :D
Qinni Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
i have even more! hahaha, I guess I'm an avid art book collector XD. I used to spend all my money on them lol. Even went on amazon japan for some books +___+. these are just the most helpful ones :D
Catstudio7 Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Hahah oh really? XD
Its good to have a good collection of books xD
I only have a few, nothing from this list thought. X3

Maybe I buy some in the future. :D
PilafiaMadness Featured By Owner Edited Jan 28, 2016  Student General Artist
FYI they have a newer edition of the Fables Covers out, updated with the newer editions of Fables:…
It's pretty much the reprint ;)

And I already have a  good chunk of these from school and my own book hoarding so it's nice to know I'm on the right track! lol 
DrawingontheWall Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
This is great! I'm always looking for helpful art books!
pampd Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Student Digital Artist
The illusion of life is also a great book for animators! Just wanted to add it beside these but wow I have so much to save up for. I love art books, they teach you so much! I just bought Loish's art book simply because I love her style. :D Great recommendations. :)
ResidualAnt Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
This is great!  I suck at anatomy and was looking for some books on it, Thanks for the list! :D (Big Grin) 
red-winged-angel Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you!
Can-Cat Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Student Digital Artist
Thanks for the cookie. Mmm.
I've been using "Gray's Anatomy".…

Ironically, my physiotherapist uses an artist's mannequin.…
FerAdami Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Professional General Artist
Amazing references here <3
I would like to add: (If you don't mind, of course :) )
To comic beginners >> Will Eisner: Comics and Sequencial Art & Graphic Storytelling and visual narrative.
Scott McCloud: Understanding Comics The Invisible Art & Reinventing Comics

Some design & concept artists I admire, that I would like to share :)
Roger Dean & Martin Dean: Magnetic Storm & Dragon's Dreams
Fantasy Artists:
Todd Lockwood, William O'connor, Ciruelo, Frank Frazetta, Brian Froud.

For Inspiration Artists, it's a great deal look at their work:
Gustave Doré, Frank Frazetta (again), Simon Bisley, Richard Willians, Jacek Yerka, H. R. Giger, Moebius* << My favorite Scifi artist.

For anatomy too:
Burne Hogarth

Well...That's it. Just some artists :B
Ode-Chan Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
Awesome!! Thank you so much!
sushy0418 Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016
oh my, these can really help. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!! :D
beareen Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Professional
I already saw this on tumblr, thank you so much! A few of them were on my wishlist before, now they're even more... :D
Addictedto-Life Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
These are awesome! Are you going to be doing a video journal as well? I really recommend Bobby Chiu!… He's a been a treat to watch and listen to :)
serkunet Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Love your list! Really need to expand my art book library!
I've been looking around for awhile for a book on plants? I hear Botany for the Artist is great!
But does anyone have any other recommendations?
UszatyArbuz Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2016   Digital Artist
I have Anatomy for the Artisis as well, and I really love this book, especially the idea with see-through pages.. amazing :nod:
Rose-Kira-chan Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2016  Student General Artist
Amazing list! I've been an avid art book collector until now but stopped due to university/moving/no space, I really want to start collecting again! :heart:
Lenaleez Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2016
this is amazing! thank you so much!!!
Jabberfast Featured By Owner Edited Jan 27, 2016  Student Digital Artist
... you like Bouguereau and Sargent... You are officially my senpai
MissSPRose Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2016
Hopefully you're feeling better and better, healthwise; judging by the amount of comments alone, hope you feel it was worth it! Much appreciated, thank you x
sketchwithtiff Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
Wow this was exactly what I needed today! Thank you!
model88 Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
That was extremely helpful, thank you for sharing!

I too have Anatomy for the Artist and highly recommend it.
thetimidgamer Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
There is a lot of good books on your list, I will have to look into some of these. I own the animation survival guide such an amazing book.
Joan-Grace Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2016   Digital Artist
I've been looking at one of these for a while, and I think I might buy it now!
LinusPearl Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh dear :hug: Thanks a lot :heart:
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