【Reviews】The Art of How to Train Your Dragon 1

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Posted on April 27, 2014

Inside the book are more than 350 development artwork, including early character designs, story sketches, and concept paintings. The books is divided into three parts, the dragons, vikings and the environment with stuff like props and houses. Discarded art and characters are also included, like Hiccup’s mother – who can cook a mean dish with dragon meat. Accompanying the art are plenty of interesting quotes and commentary from the production staff.

Nicolas Marlet and Simon Otto seem to be the lead character designers responsible for the concept art of the dragons and vikings, although a good amount of designs are actually from Nicolas Marlet. There’s a wide range of wackiness and creativity to the drawings. The character digital paintings are great and the colours are really beautiful, kudos to Zhaoping Wei.

The environment paintings from Pierre-Olivier Vincent, art director, are beautiful. This guy really knows how to draw scenic yet precarious backgrounds like sloping hilltops, snow-capped sea arches and Dragon island which is like an ice-cream cone with molten lava as topping. Not only that, his tranquil pieces are also spectacular, National Geographic-spectacular. He has created places you want to visit but probably not because one wrong step and you’ll roll down the hill.


Full of sketches, paintings, and creative thought, The Art of How to Train Your Dragon is what every “Art of” book should be… full of astounding art and insight. This is particularly important in the worlds of both 3D and traditional animation.