Sunday, 2 April 2017

Inside out

Look inside is one of those books you can open at any page and be grabbed by what you see. Though the titles says cutaway illustrations this has been interpreted in the widest possible way. There are some of those glossy, slick Photoshop renderings of technology, usually transport or tech products but the authors have gone out of their way to select some excellent examples of unusual graphic cutaways.

Perhaps the oddest are from Jason Freeny who creates sculptures of popular children's characters, Mickey Mouse, a gingerbread man, that partially reveal their anatomy. The architectural firm Foster+Partners produce eye catching cutaways of their buildings, a development in Kuala Lumpur intriguingly has photos of real people walking about the complex.

The book has a brief eight page historical overview of cutaways with examples of work, for example GH Davis, who for forty years provided art for the Illustrated London News, Frank Soltesz is mentioned but no examples of his magnificent cutaway buildings he did for the Armstrong Cork Company advertising campaign in the 1940s. Five masters of the genre are highlighted with mini portfolios over several pages. Two of these are worth mentioning: Bryan Christie uses see  though photos of the human body to illustrate how muscles and bones work, Fernando Baptista paints meticulous cutaways of historical buildings or exploring caves in the natural world, much of his work has appeared in the National Geographic.

The book's large size brings out the best in many of the illustrations because most of them are full of detail, there are also three fold-outs at thirty-seven inches wide. The book will obviously interest graphic designers and illustrators who produce information art.

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