Thursday, 4 December 2014
Review: The Art of Penguins of Madagascar by Barbara Robertson
Publisher: Titan Books
Released: November 7th, 2014
The Art of The Penguins of Madagascar takes a deep dive into the making of the animated film, featuring everything from concept art, character backstories, and design inspirations, to interviews with key animation talent. Offering an exclusive behind-the-scenes peek at the creation of the remarkable film, this must-have book tells the story behind The Penguins of Madagascar.
I haven't yet seen the Penguins of Madagascar movie, but, if this book is anything to go by, it's going to be a really fun watch. The book itself is of a very high quality, as is usually the case with film art titles, and I enjoyed flicking through the concept art and learning more about the movie making process.
Following a foreword from voice actor Tom McGrath, The Art of Penguins of Madagascar is split into three main sections: The Elitist of the Elite, Spy Masters and The Villain. Each section features loads of brilliant concept art for both the characters and the locations, as well as a good amount of informative text that delves deeper into the penguins and their movie. I particularly enjoyed reading about Antarctica and how it was made to look so realistic, and of course the art of the baby penguins is so very cute!
Another great part of this book is the making of a sequence. It takes the reader from pre-production to visual development to the end product, and is a fascinating look at the work involved in creating one small scene. It's amazing to think of the creative genius behind animation, and that's one part of the filmmaking process that I love to learn about. This book goes into lots of detail about the behind the scenes goings on, and it's great to see how a film like this comes together so seamlessly.
I've actually never seen the Madagascar films so, until reading this book, I was unfamiliar with the penguins and their co-stars. I have some new favourites now though, including Eva the snowy owl, Short Fuse the forty-year-old baby seal, and of course the penguins themselves. Each character seems larger than life and I can't wait to meet them on the big screen!
The Art of Penguins of Madagascar is a lovely book recommended for anyone interested in animation or art. It's a great addition to Titan's movie back catalogue and has succeeded in making me want to go and see the film. Penguins, owls, seals, different locations... what more could you want?! I'm just hoping the film will be as good as this art book!