THe art Of HarrY POt­ter

Book Of Charms

SFX - - Reviews - Kim­ber­ley Bal­lard

re­leased OUT NOW! 356 pages | Hard­back Au­thor Marc sumerak Pub­lisher Ti­tan Books

“There’s a dan­ger in cre­at­ing some­thing that’s com­pletely fan­tasy,” says Academy Award­win­ning pro­duc­tion de­signer Stu­art Craig. “You lose all ref­er­ence to re­al­ity.” In trans­port­ing Harry Pot­ter from page to screen, Craig and his team used this ethos as their foun­da­tion, con­jur­ing a mag­i­cal world rooted in old English ro­man­ti­cism.

Di­vided into five chap­ters – “The Wider Wizard­ing World”; “Wizards, Witches And Mug­gles”; “Mag­i­cal Crea­tures”; “Ar­ti­facts”; and “Graphic Art Of The Wizard­ing World” – this weighty, large-for­mat book makes for a richly de­tailed com­pan­ion. All kinds of con­cept art have been in­cluded, from metic­u­lous pro­duc­tion sketches drawn in lines of thick char­coal to oil paint­ings in lux­u­ri­ous colours.

It’s easy to take for granted the amount of work that goes into build­ing a film world, but when it’s laid out like this you can only marvel at the imag­i­na­tion that inks each lo­ca­tion. A highlight is the paint­ings of An­drew Wil­liamson and Adam Brock­bank, whose work de­fined the look of Harry Pot­ter’s vast lo­cales, such as the grand lake­side vis­tas of Hog­warts and the moody gothic in­te­ri­ors of 12 Grim­mauld Place.

The minu­tiae is also amaz­ing, with an en­tire chap­ter ded­i­cated to graphic de­sign­ers Mi­raphora Mina and Ed­uardo Lima, who cre­ated ev­ery­thing from po­tion la­bels to Min­istry of Magic doc­u­ments. Though it’s a lit­tle too light on com­men­tary, this re­mains es­sen­tial read­ing for all fans of the se­ries.

Stu­art Craig de­scribes Hog­warts’s me­dieval gothic style as a mix of English univer­sity and Euro­pean cathe­dral.

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