Book recommendations / inspiration
During my workshops on styleframes and art direction for 3D animation I always recommend a couple of books, that are essential in my opinion. The purpose of this section ist to list those books and links. All book links are Amazon.de affiliate links and support me in creating non-commercial art without any additional charges for you.
In my opinion the best comprehensive book on the essential topics of visual storytelling and composition. Although being targeted on comic artists it's content applies to styleframes and animation in any form as well. Besides explaining and illustrating what works best for single images, the author also teaches what's important for sequences containing multiple shots. Those lessons can be adapted directly to storyboards and editing, which makes this book an invaluable resource. Easily one of those books that I wish I would have had ten years ago.
One of the classics that should be in everybody's book shelf. Although being a bit out of date and being focused on live action it's filled with essential knowledge for directors and animators alike. Besides explaining all the necessary vocabulary it covers topics like story/script, visual structure, contrast, colors, movement, rhythm and editing. It perfectly bridges the gap between the theoretical background and how to utilize this knowledge for production.
A very entertaining book about basic story structure and the psychology behind the common and interchangeable narratives, that we know from movies and TV shows. Although this book is focused on the story structure background its content is easily applicable to animation, commercials or games and invaluable for writing treatments or scripts.
In this book Dan O'Bannon - the famous screenplay writer of classics as Alien, Total Recall or Night of the Living Dead explains and illustrates his self-developed method for screenwriting - dynamic structure. Besides some historical exploration of the classic three-act structure he shows how to apply his method, which helps greatly to understand the narrative logic and psychological pitfalls of script writing.
This collection by Tony Zhou and Taylor Ramos consists of 30 high quality video essays on topics like film form, editing or sound. While deconstructing movies ranging from classic works of Akira Kurosawa or Martin Scorsese to modern works by David Fincher or the Coen Brothers you'll learn and understand a lot of invaluable lessons through these carefully crafted videos.
The Nerdwriter is a series of weekly video essays on all kinds of topics between art and social sciences. His entertaining videos range from topics like »Modernity in Bladerunner« or »How Hitchcock Blocks a Scene« to »Ghost In The Shell: Identity in Space«.
Existing for quite some time now this vast online publication about the diverse art of the title sequence, no matter of movie, TV show or video game, does an amazing job of deconstructing those intros and adding interesting background information like interviews, making-of videos or storyboards.