Book Review: THE ART OF IAN MILLER

PrintE-mail Written by Alister Davison

REVIEW: THE ART OF IAN MILLER / AUTHOR: IAN MILLER / PUBLISHER: TITAN / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW

Role-players in their forties will doubtless be familiar with the work of Ian Miller, an artist whose work graced the covers and pages of many magazines and supplements. His distinctive pen-and-ink drawings (often looking more like etchings) are instantly recognisable as his work, the detail within each pulling the eye of the reader into it for a closer inspection. Titan Books have pulled together over 150 pages of Ian’s work, combining notes from the man himself to produce a lavish and colourful portfolio.

It’s a beautiful tome, with each page demanding full attention from the reader. Often, art books can be read with a few glances at each page, but not this one. Miller’s style grabs the attention from the outset and never lets go – here is a book that can be read in one sitting, but will demand that you return to it later, many times, for a full appreciation of the artist’s work. While Miller’s words seem few, they are always insightful; for the most part, he lets the art do the talking, as befits a book of this type.

The book covers Miller’s four-decade career without reducing it to a collection of White Dwarf covers (although a couple of memorable ones are there), ranging from dragons that look like they could breathe fire out of the page, to background sketches for films such as Ralph Bakshi’s Wizards and covers for Lovecraft novels. Especially of interest is Miller’s work for The City (a book on which he worked with the late James Herbert) and the intricate architecture of Gormenghast. The art is grouped into categories, the last of which – Dreams & Nightmares – is a tour de force of images that are both beautiful and haunting.

Fans of Ian Miller won’t be disappointed with this collection, and even those who’ve had only a passing acquaintance with his work will find it fascinating. It’s a fitting tribute to the artist; the publishers and all concerned deserve a round of applause for giving Miller the care and appreciation his work richly deserves.


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