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Drawing Down the Moon: The Art of Charles Vess Hardcover – December 29, 2009


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Dark Horse Comics; First Edition edition (December 29, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1593078137
  • ISBN-13: 978-1593078133
  • Product Dimensions: 0.9 x 9.3 x 12.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,453,027 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* One of contemporary comics’ classiest acts, fantasy artist Vess is even more stunning as a book illustrator. It’s altogether fitting, then, that book illustration looms large in this gorgeously produced retrospective album (the heavy, translucent section frontispieces are especially impressive). Vess provides his own very economical notes, which downplay technique in favor of autobiographical and art-appreciative remarks, the latter about his beloved influences, beginning with Arthur Rackham and Aubrey Beardsley, both of whose fluidly slender figures have their ilk in Vess’ creations. He also lauds the premier Victorian painter of fairies, Richard Dadd, whose mastery of crowded compositions Vess thoroughly learned; comics artists Hal Foster and Russ Manning, renowned for the ornate and graceful vigor of their work on Tarzan and Prince Valiant; and all manner of literary fantasists, starting with the Scots and English ballad makers and the Shakespeare of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which Vess has rendered in both comics and an illustrated edition of the full text. No wonder he’s the preferred artist of premier modern literary fantasists Neil Gaiman, Charles de Lint, and Susanna Clarke, the last of whom contributes an aptly breathless yet not giddy introduction. --Ray Olson

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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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This book is an absolute treasure; long overdue.
Holly Bird
Those who love fantasy art will probably adore "Drawing Down the Moon: The Art of Charles Vess," which brings together the works of this talented artist.
E. A Solinas
The layout is really good and so is the printing quality.
Tullae Mohre

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Parka TOP 50 REVIEWER on January 18, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Length: 0:29 Mins
I like Charles Vess' style. The scenes and images are magical, watercolours are beautiful, and there's a classic feel to his art. He's perfect for illustrating fantasy stories. By the way, he was won three Eisner Awards among others.

Drawing Down the Moon is a well constructed hardcover from Dark Horse. There are 200 pages and a couple are translucent with line art that overlays on the finished coloured piece beneath on the next page. Unfortunately, the overlay is just slightly misaligned, for my copy.

Over two hundred pieces of paintings and comic art are featured, from covers, comics, private commissions and personal pieces, along with them notes from Charle Vess. Creating enchanting backgrounds and fairytale characters is his specialty. So much so that it makes you want to find out more about the story after looking at the pictures.

He has created a whole lot of art for countless publications. The most notable ones are probably the paintings he did for Neil Gaiman's Stardust, which was made into a movie (I love that movie!). A few of the 175 pieces created for Stardust are featured here, not the concept art though. He's able to capture Neil Gaiman's imagination perfectly and make them come real.

The book finishes off with an interesting look at his creation process, how he handles a commissioned project, though there are no pictures of how he actually paints.

This is an inspiring retrospective for Charles Vess. Highly recommended to fantasy artists.

(More pictures are available on my blog. Just visit my Amazon profile for the link.)
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By J. Rainey on December 29, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have been a big fan of Charles Vess for over a decade and have a first edition copy of Stardust that I bought when it was first published, as well as some of his other work. So I was very excited to see this book listed and originally ordered it over 2 years ago when I first saw it on Amazon. It was definitely worth the wait. What incredibly beautiful work! I am so drawn to Charles' unique style, which never ceases to amaze me. It strikes me as an interesting blend between the old-fashioned and classic, but with a fresh twist that sets it apart from anything else. This book is a fascinating look at the progression of his work over many years, with insights into his remarkable career thus far. If you appreciate quality artwork and fantasy art in particular, then treat yourself to this wonderful book; you're bound to fall in love with it, just as I did.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Daniel V. Reilly VINE VOICE on November 5, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I've been a fan of Charles Vess since his days doing The Warriors Three for Marvel Fanfare waaaaay back in the early 1980's, so it's great to see a big, meaty collection of his artwork that spans his entire career. The selection of images used is almost perfect (If only there were another hundred pages.....), and the colors look amazing. Dark Horse has done an exemplary job here, and fans of Vess will spend hours poring over this book and studying all of the artwork in detail. Great stuff!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Andrea V. on January 1, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Charles Vess seems so familiar with the worlds of Faerie and magic that it makes you wonder what really goes on in those Virginia foothills he calls home...
Drawing Down The Moon is an absolute necessity for anyone who has ever longed for a peek into the worlds that exist just out of our sight.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Julia Smith on March 7, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a large (9.25" x 12.25") 200 page hard back book. Every page has beautiful examples of Charles Vess' artwork, often the full size of the page. The artwork includes both his color and ink work. Vess has included some narration of his career history and insights into some of the pieces. Chapters are separated by heavy vellum pages.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
as a young kid of 10 years old in a comic book store saying Charles work it amazed and drew me in I wanted to see more of it but it was hard to find and the comic book store person that I shopped at his shop wasn't much help finally after decades this book came out with most of his work which I was not aware of I knew of only the beautiful wondrous Spider-man work that he did in the early to mid 80s. His work is a very very like art and color and in lines and feel. I would recommend this to any fan of either Dungeons & Dragons art medieval fantasy are or just a fan from his comic book days
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By todd a shulek on November 14, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Charles Vess is and extraordinary gifted artist and this book showcases some of his most fantastic works, I would recommend this book to anybody at all..
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Assembling never-before, rare and limited-edition art from his amazing career - as well as classic favourites from his varied projects, Charles Vess allows his fans and enthusiasts everywhere a glimpse into his wonderful, wonderous and dangerously beautiful realm of imagination. Splash-pages, personal notes and insight make this compendium an essential piece of any art collection. Don't miss out on it.
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