Blanc et Noir: Takeshi Obata Illustrations

I am not an anime connoisseur. Sailor Moon, Ah! My Goddess, Princess TuTu, up until recently these were the titles I clung too. However, thanks VIZ Media, I've been able to broaden my horizons. In addition to storied titles like Blood Lad and Midnight Stranger I've also discovered the beauty of companies art books. On May third, VIZ introduced me to one of the most beautiful art books I've ever seen, Blanc Et Noir: Takeshi Obata Illustrations.

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Takeshi Obara rose to international success as the artist of the Shonen Jump series Hikaru No Go, which won the 2000 Shogakukan Manga Award and the 2003 Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prize: Shinsei "New Hope" Award. He then went on to illustrate the wildly popular crime thriller Death Note. Some of his other titles include All You Need is Kill, and Bakuman all of which are also available in print and digital form through VIZ Media.

"BLANC ET NOIR: TAKESHI OBATA ILLUSTRATIONS is an extraordinary art book with a beautiful, high-end treatment befitting its limited edition run. It will be a wonderful addition to any ardent DEATH NOTE fan's personal collection," says Hope Donovan, Managing Editor for VIZ Media states in a press release. "Takeshi Obata is one of Japan's foremost manga artists and is internationally acclaimed for his elegantly designed characters and crisp style. We invite fans and collectors to savor this special release!"

The oversized slipcase hardcover edition was released under the Art of Shonen Jump imprint and will have a limited print run of 10,000 copies and is a collection of Obata's works from 2001-2006. This including definitive illustrations from Death Note and Hiraku No Go, as well as a few surprises (video game designs and rare novel illustrations along with other original pieces created specifically for this art book.

I cannot stress enough how beautiful this book is. Again, Death Note and Hiraku No Go are not the style of anime I gravitate towards, however after seeing the art in this book, I have to check them out. Thank you VIZ for introducing me to this amazing artist.

The 132 page book includes full-color art, several massive foldout posters on deluxe paperstock and 12 pages of artist commentary, including a "how to draw" section. The edition also includes three large double-sided laminated posters. The book will retrial for $99.99 U.S / $119.99 CAN. It can be purchased through retailers like Amazon and Right Stuff Anime. For additional information on Takeshi Obata and manga titles published by VIZ Media, please visit www.VIZ.com.