Book Review: “The Art of Encanto” is a Gorgeous Addition to “Art of” Series

Hi everyone!

The Art of Encanto released on November 23rd from Chronicle Books, just before the film released on November 24th, 2021. We were at Disneyland Paris during this time so I’m just getting to the book review and we still need to go see the movie. The Art of Encanto is the next in a long line of Disney “Art of” books released by Chronicle, I have been buying and now reviewing the books for years and I always look forward to each one. Here is my review!

The book jacket of The Art of Encanto is colorful, just as with the interior art (and film). There is a short preface by Jennifer Lee and then a foreword by Jared Bush, Byron Howard, and Charise Castro Smith. The story began as one about family, even before the characters and story came about – a story about family through song, with music being a big part of the movie (Lin-Manuel Miranda was a creative partner from the beginning). “Encanto” took five years to bring to life, starting in 2016.

The filmmakers and consultants “embarked on a journey of discovery to learn more about Colombia and how best to reflect the country’s culture and environments on the big screen”. And of course, that meant a research trip as well.

What I really like about The Art of Encanto is how much writing is within it. Many recent “Art of” books aren’t very wordy. For example, on one page it is described how the film team “assigned a different color palette to each branch of the family tree” to differentiate to the audience who as related to whom. And the house is like a character, and that is explained. That said, the book is more art than text, but it’s a nice balance.

There are character studies, including quite a bit about Mirabel. There is SO MUCH beautiful artwork in the 176-page book. Discussion is made of Mirabel’s extended family. Director Byron Howard says, “I want people to feel like they just spent time with a real family after watching the film”. The family ended up being a core cast of twelve.

The Art of Encanto is another wonderful addition to the “Art of” book series.

From the publisher:

With never-before-seen production art, character designs, storyboards, and colorscripts, The Art of Encanto celebrates the art of this stunning animated film, alongside exclusive interviews with the filmmakers and behind-the-scenes details into the creative development process.

Encanto tells the tale of an extraordinary family, the Madrigals, who live hidden in the mountains of Colombia, in a magical house, in a vibrant town, in a wondrous, charmed place called an Encanto. The magic of the Encanto has blessed every child in the family with a unique gift from super strength to the power to heal—every child except one, Mirabel. But when she discovers that the magic surrounding the Encanto is in danger, Mirabel decides that she, the only ordinary Madrigal, might just be her exceptional family’s last hope.

• EXCLUSIVE BEHIND-THE-SCENES: Fans will want to delve into and explore this new Walt Disney Animation film through character designs, filmmaker stories, and making-of details exclusive to this book.
• PART OF THE FAN-FAVORITE SERIES: The collectible Art of series from Disney and Pixar is perfect for animation enthusiasts, filmmakers, students, art buffs, and fans of Disney alike. Add this to the shelf alongside The Art of Raya and the Last Dragon, The Art of Frozen 2, and The Art of Soul.


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