Sep 3, 2010

I got me a Joe Murray book..

I received my pre-order of the new Joe Murray book, "Creating Animated Cartoons with Character" earlier this week and I haven't been able to put it down!  Okay, well that's not totally true.  I've had work, so I put it down then.  And sometimes I was so inspired by the book that I had to put it down and doodle in my sketchbook or jot down notes.  Also, there were big stretches of time where I was sleeping.  But anyway, the point I meant to make is that it's a great book that very thoroughly covers the creative process and business side of creating your own animated series (which, it has been rumored, is what I want to do).  I liked it so much that I actually posted an Review!  You can read it below.  And, if you want to purchase the book (and you should), I recommend this link, which takes you to through Joe Murray's website, so he gets a slightly bigger slice.  He created Rocko and Camp Lazlo, I think he deserves it! :^)

Casey Lowe's Review:
***** Sound advice from someone who's been in the trenches (twice!)
For those who haven't caught on yet, this book was written (brilliantly, I feel) by the great Joe Murray, creator of the hit shows "Rocko's Modern Life" and "Camp Lazlo". I got my copy of this book the other day and was shocked at how thick it actually was! My immediate thought was that it would be filled with big pictures and sparse text; a pleasant surprise awaited me as I flipped through it. It's much more dense and thorough than I expected. The book is actually very well thought-out, entertaining, and informative. The pictures that are included (which are sized just right, not just filler) pertain to the text and are really quite inspiring. 

A bit on the content: Mr. Murray starts with a brief Bio that includes some great illustrations from earlier in his career, followed by a very brief animation history lesson. This is a great way to start the book, since you can't know where you're going if you don't know where you've been. He commences to plow forward by picking his brain about his own process in creating characters and stories, following them from initial kernel of an idea in your head to getting them on paper to creating personalities to pitching your idea, preparing a mini-bible for the pilot, producing the pilot, taking it to series, maintaining your sanity when this is your life day in and day out for years, etc. He does a fantastic job of illustrating the realities of the business while still infusing plenty of his creativity. His thorough commentary provides a step-by-step insight into what to expect (and prepare yourself for) in the creation of a television animation series. The icing on the cake? Mr. Murray also includes several interviews with other series creators and talents, picking their brains about their own process and insights on the industry. 

I cannot recommend this book enough for both creatives and fans of cartoons! :^)

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