By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
No fan of the recently finished Transformers series will want to be without Transformers: Art of Prime. This coffee table book is lavishly filled with production art and sketches. Any would-be animator will be thrilled to study how the Transformers Prime series was put together. Notes on which order the parts in a ‘bots transformation sequence should flow is just one feature this book shows off. And artists can learn how to draw the characters — human and mech — from this book. Interviews with directors like David Hartman and Jose Lopez fill out the rest of the book.
No detail is truly missed in this “bible.” Even the Predacon Terrorcons are pictorially revealed. Although only a page exists to show their evolution, that’s forgivable when considering how brief their appearance was in the series. Even the alien trophies that Airachnid had in her spaceship get a one-page treatment and these details are appreciated. Fans can spend time studying just what else this spider-mech hunted in her travels. Amusingly enough, there’s a skull which looks like a Predator without the crab-like mandibles. There’s even carapace of what may be an “Alien.”
This book is not a production bible per se, but a smorgasbord of reference material that fans can study. The acrylic and watercolor images are far more interesting to study than the hand drawn or CGI material — some of which look like they took a misstep through the printer. The colours used does not have enough tonal variation to distinguish from a muddy black to a natural black. This mistake may be a result of either a printing error or forgetting to perform further colour correction before sending this book to the press.
Despite this flaw, at least the varied content is enough to make it the centerpiece of any Transformers Prime shrine. Predaking has to be proud.