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Book Review: The Art of SOUL

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Thank you to Chronicle Books for providing a copy for review. Thoughts and opinions are my own.
the art of soul book review


The Art of Soul presents the story behind this thrilling feature film from Pixar. This companion book features stunning artwork from the film’s creation, along with character explorations, storyboards, color scripts, and much more from the creative team.

• A comprehensive volume to accompany Pixar’s feature film, Soul
• Reveals the behind-the-scenes story of this unique film
• Filled with exclusive interviews from the creative team behind it all 

The Art of Soul showcases concept art details that bring this epic story to life in a brand new way.


The Art of Soul begins with a lovely forward by Tina Fey who explains why she chose to participate in the movie. Referencing the movie Up, she says that the movies are similar in the way it makes you feel something. Getting down to the basics, SOUL is about finding your passion but also practicing gratitude. The Art of Soul focuses on the animation and art creation process with pages filled with beautiful illustrations that are both pencil sketches and digital renderings.

The Art of Soul book review

The book devotes several pages on the development of the Souls in the Great Before. In the Introduction, director Pete Doctor mentions how the researchers spoke with religious experts to develop the look. The book adds notes to some of the illustrations including how the goal was to capture the essence of a person. The final look of the Souls was the designers interpretation of light as it passes through a prism.

If you’ve read my SOUL movie review, you know that I loved the scenes in New York City and that I could have watched a movie solely about Joe walking around his community. In Part Three, The Art of Soul explores Joe’s slice of New York noting that the animators wanted to capture the mundane but beautiful details of the City, the Barbershop and Joe’s neighborhood. This book (and movie) captures the essence of what it means to be a musician, what it means to have passion and that second chances should never be squandered.

The Art of Soul has a beautiful cover which mimics the cotton candy colors of the Great Before. The images are printed on thick paper and they are all very crisp and clear. My only minor criticism is that I would have loved to see some behind the scenes photos of maybe the art process or the musicians creating the soundtrack but those missing things don’t take away from this beautiful book. The Art of Soul would be an interesting and unique gift for the Pixar fan!


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