The first book is "A Gap in Nature" about extinct animals from the more recent past. The paintings are super acurate and drop dead gorgeous! And to top it all: The original paintings are freaking lifesize! I have an own art project about the extinct animals in mind and this book is really helpful in providing informations about the animals. The author and the illustrator had the amazing opportunity to study the specimens in the museum's archives to provide as acurate as acurate can be paintings.
The second book is about an another interest of mine: Wonderchambers and nature's oddities. Wonderchambers or Wunderkammern or in this case in German "Kuriositätenkabinette" are the ancestors of modern natural historic museum's collections. Back in the 1500s due to the raising interest in the wonders of nature and technical toys, kings and nobility began to collect all sorts of exotic animals, nature's oddities and artwork or apparatons. I found this book years ago in an antiquary and fell in love with the beautiful photos and the descriptions. It gives a freat overview of the history of the Wonderchambers from the Renaissance until present time.
|An example spread of the book. :)|
The third book is the book Color and Light by James Gurney. This is a very helpful guide for studying light and how colour compisition works. I need to study it further to get a better grip in more realistic looking light and shadow effects. What I loved are the practical tips llike how to build a gamut mask and using photo-Effects for a traditional painting to give it more depth and a more realistic touch. I want to buy next "Imaginative Realism".
Here are the sources from were I got the images:
A Gap in Nature:
Das Kuriositätenkabinett (about Wonderchambers)
Color and Light