Over the past six years, co-publishers, Daniel Wade and Mark Snoswell, have gathered the top CG artists in the world and showcased them within their various publications. The duo are renown for their trendsetting, and are far ahead of their time when it comes to discovering unique and excitingly fresh artistic talent. Their newest venture, the fourth art book in Ballistic's EXOTIQUE series, is EXOTIQUE 4: The World's Most Beautiful CG Characters. Upon notification of being assigned the book review of their latest homage to the most infamous CG artists of the 21st century...needless to say, I was ecstatic.
Benita Winckler, GERMANY
For, as the subtitle of the book indicates, within the 208 pages, are indeed the most beautiful CG characters imaginable. The lords and ladies of legend are featured within a multitude of genres, such as science fiction, fantasy, and anime, to photorealism and stylized realism. With that book's subtitle to live up to, it had to be a daunting task to choose one image for the cover...and indeed, the front cover image came down to two; one image for the Special Edition, and one for the softcover edition.
Available in two editions: a leather-bound Collector’s Special Edition and Softcover
Although I am reviewing the softcover edition, I would be remiss if I did not comment on the EXOTIQUE 4 Collector’s Special Edition. This version is for the serious lover of fine art and fine art books. Pictured on the black leather-bound cover with gold embossing, is the artwork of, Tang Yuehui. Whose exquisitely beautiful image, Butterfly, was chosen as the cover for the Collector’s Special Edition. This issue also includes a set of four bonus prints (see below). Yuehui's image was created in Photoshop and Painter, and is truly breathtaking.
Four bonus prints available in the Collector’s Special Edition – [copyrighted material]
Mario 'Ryo' Wibisono, is the creative genius behind the Softcover edition's stunning front cover image. Ryo's attention to detail is incredible. Down to the tiniest of eyelashes...no aspect of his artistic creation was too insignificant to exclude. For an in depth article on how the cover was created, using Adobe Photoshop, I highly recommend exploring the following tutorial featured on CGSosiety.org.
Mario Wibisono, INDONESIA
Pepper character © Stanley Lau
As exquisite as the cover images are, each interior image matches the same quality, as does the back cover (and centerfold) image, by Brazilian artist, Moises Braga, titled, Giant Shaolin. With an additional thirty works of art highlighted in sixteen additional pages than previous editions, Exotique 4, by far surpasses its predecessors. In addition, 117 artists were published for the first time in a Ballistic publication...that's half the artists featured within the book's pages.
Yu Cheng Hong, TAIWAN
As to the extraordinary beautiful artwork within the 4th edition of the EXOTIQUE series, Daniel Wade, gave this explanation: “While still receiving a healthy number of North American and European entries, we are now seeing substantial entries from countries like China, Korea, Indonesia and Singapore which expands the breadth of styles we can present. From traditional styles to the new, there are many more opportunities to gain inspiration from the remarkable work submitted by artists from diverse cultures. We believe this diversity makes this book the best EXOTIQUE so far.”
Red Angel of revenge
Yang Qi, CHINA
A variety of software programs were used (3ds Max, ZBrush, Maya, Cinema 4D, ArtRage, Painter, etc.), by the 215 extraordinary-talented artists, to create the 322 masterpieces. As a CG artist myself, I was pleasantly surprised to see that Adobe Photoshop reigned supreme among the artists' preferred artistic tools. As a longtime Adobe Photoshop user, I could hardly wait to make a feeble attempt to emulate their artistic techniques. For the book is not only a feast for the hungry artist's soul, it is also a learning tool. An art book to study, covet and...ultimately to drool over (drool towel not included).
EXOTIQUE 4 Spread
EXOTIQUE 4: The World's Most Beautiful CG Characters
Visit the Ballistic Publishing Site for additional CG fine art books.
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December 22, 2008
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