Book Review: Miyazaki's Magical World

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I'm really glad that I picked this book off the shelf at the comic book store. It's very well worth the money.

It is written in Chinese and I can't seem to find any English version of the book on the Internet. But I'll share some images from the book with you here.

The book is a collection of concept art paintings on the world and background settings used in some of Studio Ghibli. Four films are prominently featured, namely My Neighbour Totoro, Only Yesterday, Pom Poko and Princess Mononoke. Not all are from Hayao Miyazaki as you can see.

The beautiful scenic paintings are done in traditional media, mainly water colour and oils. There are several tutorials on painting, with one that explains the process of painting, with step by step photos of the painting in progress. Other subjects include colour mixing, composing the scene, brush choices, challenges when drawing for film and lessons learned during the research process.

As a bonus, sort of, there are a few pages of paintings included from Whisper of the Heart, Spirited Away and The Cat Returns.

This book, published by Front Media, seriously deserves a translation into other languages.

Updates (14 Sep 2008):

It appears that the background painter in the book is actually Kazuo Oga. Discovered that thanks to fellow blogger, blauereiter. Check out his entry on Kazuo Oga's art exhibition in 2007.

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There seems to be a DVD for this book. It's available at Here's a review of that DVD. Note that it's in region 2.

Here's shipping rates for your reference.



I am very curious about the

I am very curious about the company Front Media that produce this book. Are they a real company that produces real anime books? I ask this because I have a Tsubasa Resvior Chronicle artbook, the back cover says Front Media in different color letters inside a white box, but, inside the first page of the book, Tsubasa is spelled, Stubasa, and there is an image that pops up twice in two pages inside the book. Can anyone clear this for me? Cause it would be a bummer if my Tsubasa artbook is fake/bootleg. You can email me back. Thanks!
BTW, I love My Neighbor Totoro!! So sweet and cute.

thanks for the answer, I

thanks for the answer, I figure as much! Now I just realize I got Nobuo Uematsu to sign my fake Final Fantasy VII book. ROFL. But as you say, the print quailty is really good, so it looks real to me. Bah!

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