When I watched The Book of Life for the first time, I was mesmerised by the art and style which is so unlike the 3D animated movies put out by Pixar, Disney, Sony and DreamWorks. There's so much culture, colours, patterns and life in the designs. If you like The Book of Life, you're going to like Maya and the Three.
The story is set in a world based on pre-colonial Mesoamerica and other indigenous cultures. Gutierrez said this is a blend of pre-Hispanic cultures of Mexico, the Americas and modern-day Caribbean. The concept artworks for the characters and environments are heavily inspired by the cultures and are absolutely beautiful. It's really fun to see the creative ways of imbuing culture and history into the designs. There is so much patterns and interesting designs going on.
The visual style of this film looks and feels very different from films from the big name animation studios. Maya and the Three did a fantastic job with creating this sense of wonder. You just don't know what to expect with every next page you flip to. Kudos to production design Paul Sullivan, art director Gerald de Jesus, head of story Jeff Ranjo and all the artists who worked on the film.
This large format 208-page hardcover is packed with art and there's a also good amount of text talking about the designs.
This book deserves to be in the top 10 artbooks of 2021.
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