Now I have successfully trashed my following I can get back on track.
Confession time, I love painting books.
From G’Dub to Kevin Dallimore to CMoN via Angel Giraldez and Picca and Lappat. They are on a shelf above my painting area and frequently beside my bed for late night perusal. This book was recommended on the ‘Eavier Metal painting group on Facebook. I ordered it, it wasn’t cheap, a bit out of my current financial comfort zone.
The book arrived fairly promptly and I sat down to study it. People say that first impressions count. I was hugely dissapointed and I have had great difficulty picking it up again to look at. I’ve had several attempts and each time is the same.
In his defence Javier Gonzales is a hugely talented painter as several Golden Demons and Slayer Swords attest.
So what is putting me off this book?
It is a combination of small things, the sum is greater than the whole.
The paper it is printed on feels cheap, slightly rough. All my other books, with the exception of the early G’Dub painting guides, are printed on coated stock. They have either a satin or glossy finish. They feel pleasant to handle. One factor in the perceived value of the book.
The next item is a design oversight which should have been picked up in the proof stage.In the corner of each page is a little black paint splash which is intended (I think) to have the page number in. What really annoys me is that this is the second edition of this book and this should have been picked up. Numbers have been added at the top of the page but they feel just like an afterthought.
The type has been set Justified and leaves too many widows which makes for hard reading.
Text aligned left and less leading. Much easier to read.
Visually there is too much leading, the space between the lines, dropping down a couple of points would have helped.
It definitely would help with the next problem, the layout of the step-by-steps. Less line spacing would have freed up more space to enable better layout.
If you look at the other layouts you can see that every picture clearly references a corresponding block of descriptive text.
ON THE SAME PAGE!
No flipping back and forth between pages to read about the techniques applied in the image. This really disrupts the flow of the tutorials. The Author references other instructional painting books yet fails to apply what makes them so good to his own work.
In chapter two, “Preparing the Figure” the Author has a picture of the various tools he uses. Underneath is a numbered list of tools. But the numbers don’t refer to the picture which is unnumbered and some tools are missing. A couple of page later he refers to using a brass disc with a hand-drill to polish the surface of the model. What does this brass disc look like? How does he hold the model?
I wish I could read Spanish. Miniature painting is a subject the Author knows well and he has a passion for it. I think the translator has done him a disservice as at times the text is stilted and at times hard to make sense of.
Some of the images are out of focus and some diagrams are pixelated.
Is this book worth buying: No.
Would I recommend this book to other people: No
BUT with some work, noted above, the third edition may be worth considering.