Animation Books That I Own

Ever since my passion for animation was ignited a couple of years ago, my collection has been on the increase. It’s still relatively small though; buying school books puts paid to that. It’s a good selection though that represents a good variety of animation styles and genres. Have a peek (click to see full-size) and let me know what you think in the comments below 🙂

  1. Not Just Cartoons, Nicktoons! – By Jerry Beck. Well, how could I not have this? Goregous graphics and backstory to all the original Nicktoons all the way through to The Mighty B!
  2. Cartoon Retro: The Art of Shane Glines – Lots of great lines in this one. The 800+ page ebook that Shane did a few years ago is awesome, but everything looks better on paper.
  3. Animation Magazine 20 Year Collection – This one’s a gift and in addition to a bit of writing, it’s also a cool way to see how the industry has changed so much since the late 80s. They’re getting ready to launch the 25 year edition too!
  4. The Art of Spirited Away – I picked this up in Belfast the day I finished my undergraduate degree. Lots of lovely sketches and illustrations but also a great insight into some of the production methods used. There is also a full copy of the English script.
  5. An Teachtaire – An Irish comic written by Colmán Ó Raghallaigh but illustrated by Tomm Moore of Secret of Kells Fame.
  6. Animation Art – Edited by Jerry Beck, this is the book that kicked it all off. Seeing as it’s a bit trick to find now, I still think there was a bit of fate involved that day I stumbled across it in a Borders in Bowie, Maryland. A great book that I re-read often.
  7. The Art of The Incredibles – Surely no reason to justify this being there, right?
  8. Assorted Life In Hell collections – Matt Groening’s indie comic. The self-portrait at the start of Work is Hell got me hooked.
  9. Stewie Griffin’s Guide to Life – Apologies for this one. It was purchased back when Family Guy was still funny in a non-brain-dead way.
  10. Planet Simpson – By Chris Turner. If ever you wanted a detailed breakdown of one of the best TV shows ever made, this is the tome you want. It gets a bit complicated and existential, but it really is hard to beat.
  11. Your Career in Animation: How to Survive and Thrive
  12. Animation Development: From Pitch To Production
  13. Directing Animation – These three are all written by Dave Levy and even though I’m not directly involved in the animation industry, these have nonetheless been a superb guide to it and how animation is produced. I couldn’t begin to tell you how much I’ve learned from reading them.
  14. The Animation Pimp – By Chris Robinson. This one was a toughie, but the descriptions of people at the end was well worth the effort.
  15. The Vault of Walt – By Jim Korkis. I love the oddball and quirky stories in this one. Much more interesting than the usual Disney stories.
  16. The 100 Greatest Looney Tunes – By Jerry Beck (again?). It may be small but it packs a great punch as it guides you through some of the best output of the Golden Era
  17. Chuck Jones: A Flurry of Drawings – Sadly I’ve yet to read this one.
  18. The Book Of Big Little Books – Big little books were a kind of book released in the 30s (?). This book has quite a nice selection of them.
  19. Walt Disney: An American Original – By Bob Thomas. A great read, whether it has a slight bias or not.
  20. How To Make Animated Movies – By Anthony Kinney. This is the kind of book I enjoy; detailing how to do something in a completely obsolete way.
  21. Walt in Wonderland. Detailing Walt’s early years and the silent films he produced. Michael Sporn has written a bit on this book if you’re interested.
  22. That’s All Folks! The Art of Warner Bros. Animation. Although they’re often taken for granted, there really was a ton of great art produced throughout the studio’s existence.
  23. Serious Business – Hiding in the back is this overview of the American animation business.
  24. Bart Simpson’s Guide to Life – By Matt Groening. Being older now, I appreciate the humour a lot more. Plenty of Groening’s trademark wit that characterised the series’ early years.
  25. BFI Classics: Spirited Away – I just finished reading this and it makes a great companion to the Art Of book listed above.
  26. Cartoon Modern – By Amid Amidi. I recently wrote about this, a must for any bookshelf.
  27. Children’s Television – By Cy Schneider [signed]. Although dated by the time of its release, it is a window into the animation business of the 50s through the 80s. Mattel toyetic shows ahoy!
  28. The Art of Walt Disney – This is a recent acquisition but it was published in the early 70s. So Walt was still a very recent memory. I haven’t read it yet, but I am curious to see what it reads like, considering that we know what came after.

Not shown: Walt’s People Volume 11 put together by Didier Ghez. I am currently in the middle of reading this and I can safely say that it has whetted my appetite for Amid Amidi’s upcoming book on Ward Kimball.

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