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Artist Jen Zee is best known for her role as Art Director at Super Giant Games, where she’s “responsible for the lush hand-painted 2D artwork that defines the distinctive look of our gameworld and all its colorful denizens.” She helped to design the iconic look for Bastion, a popular 2011 action RPG. Her work will also be seen in Transistor, a spiritual follow-up to Bastion, which releases on May 20th for PC and PS4. Read More »

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How to Behave Like
a Princess

“I pretend I am a princess, so that I can try and behave like one.”
-Sara Crewe in A Little Princess

I had loved reading fantasy as a child, but even as an older teen I struggled to find speculative fiction that challenged me without making me feel unwelcome and unvalued.

In the early oughts, I nearly gave up on epic fantasy altogether. Until I stumbled across a copy of The Dragonbone Chair at a used bookstore. I can’t quite remember why I decided to give it a chance, but I’m incredibly glad that I did. My love for Tad William’s Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn isn’t unconditional, but it did a lot to restore my faith that I could find fantasy stories that I would enjoy as an adult. I had loved reading fantasy as a child, but even as an older teen I struggled to find speculative fiction that challenged me without making me feel unwelcome and unvalued. After all, Terry Brooks may have given me Brin Ohmsford, but he also turned Amberle into a tree. It wasn’t just that the lives of the girls and women in these novels seemed to revolve around men. What bothered me more was that they rarely acted in ways that seemed logical, consistent, or grounded in anything resembling human behavior. My problem was not that Amberle sacrificed herself, but that I was never convinced it was in character for her to do so, especially as described in the book. And we won’t speak of Piers Anthony, and what it was like to read his novels, which came highly recommended, while also trying to deal with grown men yelling things about my body at me while I walked home from the library. Read More »

Cover art for The Mirror Empire by Kameron Hurley

When Angry Robot Books announced that they had acquired Kameron Hurley’s The Worldbreaker Saga, the first epic fantasy from the author of God’s War, I knew readers were in for a treat. Hurley’s series, beginning with The Mirror Empire, is one of my most anticipated novels of 2014, and Angry Robot Books is known for their fun and progressive approach to cover art. It’s a match made in heaven, right? Read More »

Richard J. Evans, knows the way to my heart. Recently, the graphic artist from Birmingham, England released a collection of art based on Studio Ghibli’s popular films, including: Spirited Away, My Neighbour Totoro, Ponyo, and Princess Mononoke. I’m all a-flutter with delight.

“I’ve been experimenting in different styles lately, and I’ve always loved pixel art,” Evans told Wired. “I was trying to think of what to do, and I just thought there were already loads of 8-bit superheroes. Studio Ghibli would be something a bit different.”

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On his official Behance profile, where the full set of artwork can be found, Evans further described his choice to honor the work of Studio Ghibli and Miyazaki, one of Japan’s most revered film makers. “To celebrate the release of ‘The Wind Rises’, said to be the last animated feature from legendary director Hayao Miyazaki,” he said, “I wanted to pay tribute to the amazing work of Studio Ghibli by re-creating some of their most beloved characters in pixel art.”

You can find more of Evans’ art on his official website.

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Via George R.R. Martin’s Not a Blog, we have what appears to be the final cover art for The World of Ice and Fire, a companion book to his popular A Song of Ice and Fire series. Martin describes The World of Ice and Fire as “a big coffee table volume with lots and lots of stunning artwork, and tons of fake history.” HE also admits that his contribution, which was supposed to ring in at around the length of a novella grew in size. “We were supposed to provide 50,000 words of text,” he said, “but… ah… I got carried away.”

Sounds like fans have a lot to look forward to. Now, here’s hoping the artwork in the The World of Ice and Fire is of a higher quality cut than that in The World of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time and Terry Brooks’ The World of Shannara. I still have nightmares about those books.