Friday, September 6, 2013

Art DVDs: James Gurney's AWESOME "How I Paint Dinosaurs" DVD Review!


James Gurney
images and video copyright James Gurney
Join artist James Gurney in his studio as he shows you how he creates two dinosaur paintings for Scientific American magazine. Gurney demonstrates and explains every step, close-up and in detail, including research, thumbnail sketches, 3D maquettes, preliminary drawing, planning the color scheme, and the final oil painting. The method is helpful for any artist wishing to create a realistic image of an imaginary subject.

I've been looking forward to the release of James Gurney's instructional art DVD since he mentioned it on his blog a few months ago....AND NOW ITS OUT!

I finally got a chance to see it last week and I LOVE it!  The DVD is divided into two parts.  Each section goes over in detail the creation of two of James Gurney's GREAT dinosaur paintings (Part 1 "Kosmoceratops" painting / Part 2 "Take Down" painting).


James Gurney has been on my top 10 favorite artists of all time list for years.  To get the opportunity to enter the magic world of one of your favorite artists studios and get to hang out for an hour and see how they work is AMAZING.  That is exactly what this DVD is, a GREAT hour with James Gurney going over the creation of his art in tons of detail start to finish!

I enjoyed the subtle humor (a lot of cameos by James art bird "Mr. Kooks") and relaxed pace of the video.  I get the real sense James loves what he does and enjoys the entire creation process (a key to creating GREAT art I think).  I also really enjoyed the time lapse sections of the DVD where you can see hours of work in a few minutes.

This is a dream video for creature, monster and fantasy artists everywhere!  The DVD covers traditional methods and tools, however, I can easily see these methods and techniques translated into digital art creation.  You can use 3D computer generated models to help in painting with photoshop just as easily as you can use hand made models for traditional painting.  While this DVD only covers traditional techniques these techniques can be easily adapted for digital art creation.


This is a DVD I will be watching many more times!  Its very entertaining and mesmerizing to see these AWESOME creations coming to life (the "Kosmoceratops" painting is a MASTERPIECE)!  My wife wont sit still for any movie, but she sat still for James Gurney's  "How I Paint Dinosaurs"!

There are also bonus features with the purchase of the DVD.  I was surprised to see that the DVD came with a great 5x7 print of the "Kosmoceratops" painting.  The DVD also has two bonus features.  First is a slide show of many of James Gurney's AWESOME dinosaur paintings.  The slide show really pulls the DVD together nicely by displaying what can be created with these techniques.

The second bonus feature is a short paintbrush demo showing techniques and brush samples.  Again I feel much of the paintbrush tutorial can be easily translated into creating effects and techniques in photoshop for digital painting.  None of the bonus features or art print are available with the digital download.

I really enjoyed it and I look forward to more art instruction DVDs from James Gurney!  Be sure to check out  "How I Paint Dinosaurs"!

DVD available at:

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Download also through Sellfy (for Paypal payments):

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