Rockport Publishers usually publish graphic design books so it's a bit surprising that this book was published by them.
This is a 224-page paperback that comes with a dust jacket that unfolds into a poster. The poster doesn't show poster art but a collection of the illustrations that appear in the book.
The book profiles and features 28 upcoming and leading artists in the realm of science fiction and fantasy art. The variety is great. The artists are sorted by three mediums:
Combined traditional and digital tools - Jim Burns - Shaun Tan - Dave Seeley - Avi Katz - John Picacio - Pavel Mikhailenko - Ken Wong - Brom - Greg Spalenka - Bruce Jensen - Scott M. Fischer - Todd Lockwood
Digital tools and Techniques - Stephan Martiniere - Tomasz Maronski - Camille Kuo - Galan Pang - Marta Dahlig
Traditional Tools and Techniques - James Gurney - Kinuko Y. Craft - Charles Vess - Donato Giancola - Rebecca Guay - Dan Dos Santos - Petar Meseldzija - Terese Nielsen - Bob Eggleton - Don Maitz - Gregory Manchess
This is a large book and well laid out. Each artist comes with a few beautiful pieces of illustrations featured, ranging from quarter page size to full page. Some of them are progress snapshots of paintings and come with captions on how they were created. It doesn't go very technical but general enough to know what's going on.
The artists profiles are lengthy and inspiring to read. They talk about how they got started, their influences and views on art and also shares some tips and techniques. It can be Todd Lockwood explaining why he likes graphite, or Marta Dahlig talking about the challenges of creating art for clients.
It's great to see new artists featured along with more established ones like James Gurney, Stephan Martiniere, Charles Vess, etc. More than half of the artists are new to me and their work are of high standards.
This is a wonderful collection and a truly enjoyable read.
(There are more pictures of the book on my blog. Just visit my Amazon profile for the link.)