Monday, January 21, 2013

Dinotopia: Art, Science, and Imagination

(Video link) Here's a video that tells the story of the making of Dinotopia, created for the 20th anniversary edition and the Lyman Allyn exhibition.

The exhibition called "Dinotopia: Art, Science, and Imagination" ends February 2 at the Lyman Allyn Art Museum in New London, Connecticut. The show has more than 100 objects: original oil paintings, preliminary sketches, maquettes, and dinosaur fossils.

There's more good news. Another Dinotopia exhibition called "Dinotopia: The Fantastical Art of James Gurney" will have a short run from Wednesday, February 20 through Wednesday, March 13, 2013 at the New Hampshire Institute of Art in Manchester. That show will include Dinosaur Parade, Garden of Hope, Dinosaur Boulevard and many other classic images.
The four Dinotopia books mentioned:
Dinotopia: A Land Apart from Time, 1992
Dinotopia: The World Beneath, 1995
Dinotopia: First Flight, 1999
Dinotopia: Journey to Chandara, 2007


Matthew Meyer said...

That looks fantastic!

I hope you'll be coming back to the Philadelphia are soon. I was out of the country last time you were here.

Jon Hrubesch said...

I love watching the behind the scenes making of movies and for me this was a great behind the scenes look at how you make your art. You have put so much work into this, it definately shows. Thanks for all your efforts they are very much appreachiated.

F. Emmanuel Laverde said...

Beautiful video!
When will be the next video contest!
Dinotopia world is very inspiring.

Super Villain said...

my favorite of your videos, i sat through it a couple times while at the Lyman Museum!

also a side question, will you be at Spectrum Fantastic Art Live again this year?

James Gurney said...

Thanks, SuperV. Me and Mr. Kooks had fun making it. Don't think I'll be able to make it to SFAL because I already got asked to the portrait conference and plein air convention this spring.

Thanks, Emmanuel. Enjoyed meeting you in Albany. E won the video contest for I.R. That would be fun to do another contest. I'll give it some thought....

Appreciate your kind words, Jon and Matthew

Diana Moses Botkin said...

How marvelous to see some of the back story of your wonderful Dinotopia work.

It is good to get a feel for all the labor that you've expended for these projects (and your history of curiosity, as well).

The plein air sketching, posing friends in costume, building models, etc. would be enough work for several people but you've done all of it yourself. Amazing.

Your budgie pal on your shoulder made me think of Merlin's Archimedes. I hope your pretty friend does not leave droppings on your drawings.

Michael said...

Love the videos! They have a wonderful production value. Don't you do all these yourself with friends and family? Aren't you doing special camera moves with homemade lego dollies and cranes. Isn't the scripting and videoography all homespun garage tinkering that comes out great because you're having so much fun?

James Gurney said...

Michael, yes, I run the camera by myself, set up the lights and microphone and do the editing, too. My wife helped with the camera on location shots. It's all basic prosumer gear. Camera moves are powered by Lego motors unspooling thread to Lego carts running on dollar-store broomsticks. Smoke machine is my son's party gadget.

Diana, Mr. Kooks does leave droppings here and there and nibbles on sketches, but he's a good pal. He loves to hang around while I'm working, though he's mighty suspicious of the camera dollies.

Bruce Woollatt said...

I recognized Toronto's Royal Ontario Museum amongst your museum research stops. Will the Dinotopia exhibit be making any Canadian stops?

Bruce Woollatt said...

I recognized Toronto's Royal Ontario Museum among your research spots. Will the Dinotopia exhibit be making any stops in Canada? The ROM would make a great venue (and one I could get to fairly easily!)

Wonderful stuff!

Alhaitham Jassar said...

Hi Mr.Gurney..Will you ever have a show in Atlanta?

Lanz said...

So does it freak you out a little bit to realize that Dinotopia is twenty years old already? I know it does me . . .

Rich said...

Delightful movie!
And what an assiduous and conscientious worker you are!

I find the budgie suits you very well: these birds & plumage offer a range of colors and patterns as your paintings do.

Rich said...
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mp said...

Terrific video! Love the bird, Mr. Kooks. lol

Though I am a mom, rather than a dad, (my son's dad was usually busy at his desk, illustrating) when my son was young, I learned about dinosaurs along with him, learning many of the names, etc.

I can't help but wonder whether "Dinotopia" was further inspired by a shared interest with your son/s.

I have your books on illustration and now I am wanting to read "Dinotopia" as well.

David Apatoff said...

James, I was going to compliment you and the Museum for commissioning such a professional movie, complete with smoke effects. When I read in the comments that you made this little beauty yourself, I was doubly impressed. Is there no limit to your talents?

James Gurney said...

Thank you, David, and look who's talking--art museum curator, book author, and that's not even including your day job.

MP, yes, I never would have come up with Dinotopia if I hadn't been a dad first.

Lanz, 20 years goes quick!

Alhaitham and Bruce, I'd love to have the exhibit travel to Atlanta or Ontario. Please talk it up to any contacts you may have there.

David Glenn said...

I'm amazed at this. You're an amazing artist.