01/06/2005. Contributed by Geoff Willmetts
pub: Jim Warren Studios. 148 page illustrated hardback. Price: $49.95 (US) available through his website. ISBN: 0-9658775-0-7.
check out website: www.jimwarren.com
Jim Warren's artwork is seen more in the States than this side of the pond. With this book showing only a small sampling of his work, I only spotted one book, 'Beauty And The Beast', that I could put claim to owning an import copy. I'm pretty sure the reverse is true Stateside. Saying that, this book should appeal to art fans both sides of the pond and even beyond, especially if you like surf and horses.
Compared to the Paper Tiger book, 'Painted Worlds', of a couple years back, this book originally came out before then but has since been revised. As I haven't seen the original, I can only go by what I see here.
In many respects, this book could be called a 'This Is Your Life' book. Artist Jim Warren tells of his early life with photographs of family and early paintings following his development as a mostly self-taught artist. This then extends into various sections devoted to his surrealistic to fantasy artwork before looking at the various markets he's sold in from record covers to book covers to portraiture and private commissions as well as a few collaborations to marine artist Weyland. There is also a decent section at the end for advice to neo-artists and a demonstration of putting a painting together. If nothing else, it should hit on some starting point for neo-artists to show all things are possible.
Jim Warren has a good eye for composition and colour which is a viable asset when painting surreal works. The quality of his work with the few scans here should speak for themselves. If I have to be critical, although he gets a realistic surf, the rest of the ocean could do with a little more work. Although his birds and most of his animal life are spectacular, I feel he's still working on his dogs, mostly cos of the hair but I'm only really going by one example here. Then again, they always are a tough subject to bring to life. This isn't being overtly critical but if I gush too much you'll think I was over-selling this book. I should also point out that he doesn't use an air brush and you need to pay attention to how he prepares his canvas.
Although there are some paintings here that was used in the Paper Tiger book, there is enough additional work to justify having this book added to your collection and to pass the time on a rainy day with some jaw-dropping artwork.
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