By Michael Turner
ISBN I 85960 627X
Published by Haynes, £17.99
Although there has been a huge boom in motorsport art in recent years, the name of Michael Turner remains the best-known of the current practitioners. Now the prolific artist has encapsulated his skills in a manual aimed at encouraging others to emulate him. A professional motor racing artist for over 40 years, Turner claims he has been considering this book for some 30 of them, so we can safely assume it contains all his best tips..
Although the subject matter is so specialised, the book assumes the reader is no artist and begins right at the beginning, with a run-down of tools and materials (all nicely sketched by Turner) and a quick grounding in perspective. Simple outlines show how he blocks out the rough shapes of the cars, and from there he works through the book’s chapters in the same way as he builds up a picture, leading on to surfaces, texture, composition and atmosphere. The trouble is that being such an accomplished artist, he makes the transition from these bare bones to detailed illustrations in an effortless jump which may depress his apprentices…
Still, if you’re keen on cars but thought you lacked drawing skills, his simple sketch outlines should be encouraging enough to get you going. (Though I found that the sketches themselves are so interesting I wanted captions.) And if you merely want a good value compilation of Tumer’s work, there are enough examples here of all periods and types of racing to make the tutorial element almost a bonus. GC