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Spectrum: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art: No. 1 Paperback – 29 Oct 2003

4.3 out of 5 stars
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4.3 out of 5 stars 16 reviews from Amazon.com

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"A feast for the eye and the imagination"

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars 16 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent but, you have to keep in mind 12 Sept. 2015
By Kilyén Balázs - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Excellent but, you have to keep in mind, how much the world changed since it was released.

I was nothing less then shocked, when i saw the "cutting edge" 3d computer pictures (that should be jaw dropping), compared to 2015s 3d modells. All that aside, you can notice the change and shift in every aspect of art with digital tools advancing and media spread of animation and fantasy- Sci fi themes and topics. The pictures clearly feel outdated compared to the refined fantas and sci fi art of 2010+
My personal suggestion is to buy Spectrum 15+ if you want amazing and inspirational pictures.
Dont get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with the art in it, the artists are extremely talented and known even now, they are just made in another era with older tools and mindset.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Thing of Beauty 4 Jan. 2013
By Trenton Bennett - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a reprint of the first Spectrum volume, and the goal of the series is a noble one: each year, a panel of judges picks some of the best artwork in the fantasy/sci-fi/horror genres and they are bound together in a collected volume. Entries could be painting, illustration, sculpture, and real, digital or a combination of both. What makes reading through any of the Spectrum collections fun is the combination of talent and creativity that goes into every entry. You may not like every image (and this first volume isn't necessarily the best of them), but you will find many things you like.

As with all art books, it should be pointed out that there will be some depictions of nudity, violence, or gore. If images that are as graphic as, say, a Frank Frazetta painting of Conan bother you, then be advised. I don't find anything truly horrifying or awful to look at and quite the opposite I find moments of sheer beauty, as you can see from the colorful example by James Gurney on the cover.

For those who love the fantastic and can appreciate art, the Spectrum books are an enjoyable collection, and I'm glad that the many artists who put in effort every year on things like book covers, games, and statues can get some recognition for their work.
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing series gets started 27 Dec. 2013
By wiredweird - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I look forward to the Spectrum annuals every year - they represent the best in fantasy and SF art of every kind, and offer a huge range of looks, moods, and talent, So if course, I was interested in the first of the series.

In some ways, it's very familiar Perennial names, like Charles Vess, Michael Kaluta, John Bolton, and Brom (back when he used a first name, also) appear here, along with rising and unfamiliar names in every genre. Although the level of skill is as good as any, a few things look dated - remember when Dinotopia was new? This comes from that era. And, in some ways, this foreshadows what the series would become. For example, later editions list the title of each piece - an omission I found odd for any art anthology.

One might argue that later editions of Spectrum feature better art - but one could also argue that Spectrum itself, by highlighting and publicizing the form, helped encourage those improvements. In an case, the first is as worthy a member of the series as this year's, the twentieth - and I look forward to many more in coming years.

-- wiredweird
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Later books are better 2 Nov. 2011
By C. Monk - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
To be fair, I first noticed the Spectrum books at Spectrum 17 and was wowed by the diverse and great art presented. I love these books for inspiration for my writing and Spectrum 17 hit the spot.

The first few Spectrums, however, pale in comparision. The pictures are small, often with several crammed onto the same page, and the art itself is a confused collection of random types of art, which is great at showcasing all that's out there, doesn't really maintain an over-arching theme.

Maybe that's not fair to these first few books, but if you are looking to buy a book with dazzling fantasy/horror/sci-fi pictures, try the later books in this series.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting selection of a variety of art and illustrations 13 July 2010
By Christopher R. Travers - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This could be titled "The Best in Contemporary Fantasy Illustrations." Most of the works here illustrations or art for publications (book covers, etc). There are some outstanding pieces here, some genuinely interesting pieces, and a lot of fairly typical pieces.

On the whole I think people who are into the art on covers of books, etc. will enjoy this work. I did dock one point because I though that there wasn't a real correlation between the quality of the art and the space it was given though. Maybe later issues are better? I haven't seen them yet.
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