25 Anime Art Books – The Ultimate Collection

Table of Contents

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Written by Juha

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The following list is carefully selected and researched. I also included many of the anime art books I personally own, as I saw them as something that truly gives you the inspiration to draw and get that creative flow in you.

I often read anime art books as they will give me an insane amount of inspiration and ignites that passion for drawing. Enjoy the list!

PERSONA 5 – The Animation

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PERSONA 5 the Animation Material Book
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 272 Pages - 01/07/2020 (Publication...

The author bases this book on the video game Persona 5, which has over 2 million sales under its title. Persona 5 – The animation is a tv series produced by a famous Japanese studio – CloverWorks. There is always something enticing in this book.

When you buy this book, you are purchasing a complete top-rated anime book that comes with terrific eye-catching artworks ranging from character profiles, visual illustrations, and background designs. This book also offers you two intriguing special episodes – the ‘Dark sun’ and ‘Star and Ours.’

Dragon Ball: A Visual History

Dragon Ball: A Visual History
  • Hardcover Book
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 240 Pages - 11/12/2019 (Publication...

An influential and inspiring artist, Akira Toriyama, is the author behind the best-selling manga series – Dragon Ball. This animation book is beautifully designed and features comprehensive full-color visual art-work ranging from manga art to terrific sketches and posters.

The Art of Spirited Away

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The Art of Spirited Away
  • The Art of Spirited Away
  • Hardcover Book
  • Miyazaki, Hayao (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 240 Pages - 10/01/2002 (Publication...

The Art of Spirited Away is an animation book written by Hayao Miyazaki, translated by Yuji Oniki, and edited by Alvin Lu. This book makes the list of the best anime books to have and borrows its artwork from the legendary animated film – Spirited Away.

You will get an unending artistic flow of color skills, storyboards, and beautiful animations with this anime book’s acquiring. The Art of Spirited away is initially written in Japanese, but you can find it in a complete English script.

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Drawing from the The Art Of Spirited Away art book

I personally own this book and come back to it, now and then, as it has so many superbly colored animation cels and drawings. This book ignites the inspiration to draw toned down colors and create something Ghibli styled drawings.

Hiroyuki Imaishi Anime Artworks

Hiroyuki Imaishi Anime Artworks...
  • Hiroyuki Imaishi (Author)
  • Japanese (Publication Language)
  • 224 Pages - 05/20/2020 (Publication...

Whether you are a fan or want to try an anime book, this animation book should be pleasing. This book is the first official one of Hiroyuki Imaishi, best known for his outstanding animation and illustrations.

This book showcases art illustrations and other forms of artistic settings of the author’s animation works, such as Neon Genesis Evangelion.

Ghost in the Shell – Original Collection – Archives – [JAPANESE EDITION 2014]

Ghost in the Shell Original Collection...
  • GHOST IN THE SHELL (Author)
  • Japanese (Publication Language)
  • 05/14/2021 (Publication Date) -...

This top-rated anime book is a complete inspiration with 288 anime pages and over 1000 diagrams and illustrations that you find in this book.

The author places all the diagrams and illustrative art chronologically to redesign the film’s episodes. If you are looking to upgrade your anime book collection or just started to own one, then this one is a must-have.

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A drawing from the book Ghost In The Shell Archives

I personally have this artbook too, and what I like about the drawings is the conceptuality of the drawings. They are not fully drawn pieces that are used in the actual anime movie, but rather the whole storyboard. 

While they are “sketch” -like drawings, they still have enough details for you to dive in and start drawing Masamune Shirow styled drawings.

Akira Club

Akira Club
  • Officially Licensed
  • Hardcover Book
  • Otomo, Katsuhiro (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 256 Pages - 09/04/2007 (Publication...

You will now find an edition of this book for the first time published in English. Katsuhiro Otomo writes this book, and it is from a collection of mind-blowing ideas of Akira.

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A drawing from the Akira Club art book

In this book, you will find striking features expressed by the author, including and not limited to production sketches, drawings, and posters. No animation fan or aspiring animation artist should miss the inspiring illustrations found in Akira Club.

Akira club is one of my favorite art books. It wasn’t too long ago when I read the book, watching the superbly detailed manga art and getting inspired to draw something in a pure manga-style.

Shinkai Makoto Work – “Kimi no Na wa. (Your Name.)” Art Book

Shinkai Makoto Work "Kimi no Na wa....
  • Toho / Comics Wave Film / Febri Henshu...
  • Japanese (Publication Language)
  • 208 Pages - 05/14/2021 (Publication...

This anime art book is one of the beautiful works of Makoto Shinkai. This book includes a collection of art drawings that will blow your mind right from the beginning to the last page. You can add this one to your anime book collection.

I watched the movie and not long after that I bought the art book for the anime movie. Makoto Shinkai is one of the most detailed oriented anime artists there is, and you can see that when you read this art book. 

I usually stop to a drawing and just take it all in for about 15 minutes. The details are just outstanding, and there’s a lot to admire in this artbook.

Evangelion Illustration 2007-2017 (Neon Genesis Evangelion)

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Evangelion Illustrations 2007-2017 (The...
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 176 Pages - 06/11/2019 (Publication...

This anime art book does not hesitate to bring its artwork collections in full color. The illustrations in this book showcase art of the series that reformulate the genre of mecha. This animation book is one of the most surviving benchmarks of anime.

This terrific book of anime gathers illustrations worth a decade that have been showcased by the Neon Genesis Evangelion in the animation industry. Before this book, there was a series of television series and movies. This book is one that you should consider for your anime collection.

Yutaka Nakamura Animation Key Frame Vol. 1 (Japanese Edition)

Yutaka Nakamura Animation Key Frame...
  • アニメスタイル編集部 (Author)
  • Japanese (Publication Language)
  • 600 Pages - 05/14/2021 (Publication...

There are undoubtedly more than 600 pages of animations in the form of keyframes featured in this treasure of an animation book. The Flipbook frame and the Booklet frame include gorgeous animations such as The Vision of Escaflowne.

The author of this animation book is Yutaka Nakamura, who is known for his animation – this book features most of his best animations. If you want to learn about crucial animation or simply admire beautiful animation, the continuous action pack and lasting effects that flow in this book will surely grab your attention.

The book has 96 pages, 300 pages of Gaiking flipbook, and another 300 pages of Escaflowne flipbook printed and published in Japan.

The Art of Fire Emblem: Awakening

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The Art of Fire Emblem: Awakening
  • The Art of Fire Emblem Awakening
  • Hardcover Book
  • Various (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 320 Pages - 10/18/2016 (Publication...

This book is a best-seller, and it brings you an in-depth artistic look with lots of illustrations, including character blueprints, concept sketches, and weapon designs. This animation book is very engaging, and you can picture and imagine what would have happened if you made poor decisions in the real game.

Furthermore, this epic anime story shows you the behind-the-scenes at the ‘smash-hit’ 3D game with your possibly favorite characters. If you love the Fire Emblem character designs or are a fan of the Fire Emblem, this is an anime book you’d like.

Pokemon Adventures 20th Anniversary Illustration Book: The Art of Pokemon Adventures(1) (Pokemon)

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Pokémon Adventures 20th Anniversary...
  • Yamamoto, Satoshi (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 168 Pages - 08/08/2017 (Publication...

The author of this full-color illustration anime book is inspired by the famous best selling Pokemon video games. With great artwork, beautiful sketches, and an ultimately brand new manga story, you cannot go wrong with this animation book.

There is a collection of different colorful illustrations and exclusive sketches from the Pokemon Adventures novel series. Initially, this book was published in Japanese but can now be found in English.

Der Mond: The Art of Neon Genesis Evangelion (1)

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Der Mond: The Art of Neon Genesis...
  • Hardcover Book
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 120 Pages - 10/10/2006 (Publication...

This is a phenomenon part of the Neon Genesis Evangelion anime book. This book has a new look with a hardcover. It is one of a kind and very stylish in its appearance: the author, Yoshiyuki Sadamoto in one of the all-time famous anime artists. You can get this book with zero doubts of disappointment.

It comes with 724 pages of different paintings and designs dedicated to Neon Genisis Evangelion. Another 50 pages borrowed from The Wings of Honneamise, Nadia: The Secret Blue Water, Blu Uru, and more from other works Eric Clapton’s 1998 album – Pilgrim.

The Art of Princess Mononoke

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The Art of Princess Mononoke
  • Viz Media
  • Hardcover Book
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 224 Pages - 08/26/2014 (Publication...

The art in this anime art book is inspired by the original art of Hayao Miyazaki, who uses the technology of computer graphics in the film Princess Mononoke. This book is the latest in the long line of art books from Ghilbi Studio.

The film was the first one to be streamed in the American TV industry. Finally, this book captures the journey from the beginning of the idea to the point where it makes it to the big screens, all in terrific sketches and pure animation.

The Art of Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind

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The Art of Nausicaä of the Valley of...
  • Hardcover Book
  • Miyazaki, Hayao (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 192 Pages - 04/16/2019 (Publication...

Hayao Miyazaki brings to life another epic fantasy anime book – The Art of Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind. The author bases this book on his own manga that was released in1984. It has been in the game ever since.

This anime art book explains how humankind set off a catastrophe in an old war. Furthermore, the author narrates through artistic illustrations, sketches, and watercolors how the earth slowly submerges under the big deadly forest – Sea of Decay, which produces distorted insects and lethal dormant bacterium.

On the other side, beyond the Sea of Decay lies Valley of the Wind, which is home to the character Nausicaa, who goes above and beyond to bring the slightest sought of peace and good health to her people.

Weathering With You

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Weathering With You
  • Hardcover Book
  • Shinkai, Makoto (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 192 Pages - 12/17/2019 (Publication...

Written and directed by Makoto Shinkai, this anime art book illustrates through endless artistic designs how the character Hodaka escapes from high school to find a better life in Tokyo. Unfortunately, it is hard for Hodaka to adjust to the new aspects of life. On the contrary, he meets a new character, a girl named Hina, who possesses mysterious powers.

The author illustrates how Hina can part the clouds and bring the sun with just a single prayer. Hina’s powers come at a price. Both characters have to make a tough decision about their future because the weather escalates further. If you a fan of anime art books, you should surely get this anime art book.

Blanc et noir: Takeshi Obata Illustrations

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blanc et noir: Takeshi Obata...
  • Viz Media
  • Hardcover Book
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 132 Pages - 05/03/2016 (Publication...

This best-selling anime art book written by Takeshi Obata gathers inspirations from the popular series Death Note and Hikaru No Go. All of the illustrations in this anime artbook are definitive, and that’s why it makes the list of the best anime art books.

With 132 pages of full-colored art, this anime art book comes with a sweet 12 paged artist commentary, including a ‘how to draw’ segment. This incredible anime art book comes in a limited edition with 10K copies printed.

JoJo 6251: Araki Hirohiko’s World (Araki Hirohiko no Sekai – Japanese)

JoJo 6251 Araki Hirohiko's World...
  • Hirohiko Araki (Author)
  • Japanese (Publication Language)
  • 172 Pages - 12/10/1993 (Publication...

Hirohiko Araki illustrates this anime art book in conjunction with Lucky Land Communications. The first part of this anime art book has the artist’s interpretations of characters from Araki’s previous works.

Sword Art Online ABEC Art Works

Sword Art Online abec Art Works
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Yen Press (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 162 Pages - 11/14/2017 (Publication...

This 160 paged complete work of animation comes from the illustrator of the Sword Art Online novel series who features illustrations from previous volumes and previous character designs, and more like posters and magazines. Sword Art Online Art Works is under the genre Art Manga Sequential Art, and it is an anime art book you should buy.

Steins: Gate Art Works Imaginations of Huke

Steins: Gate Art Works Imaginations of...
  • Kadokawa Shoten (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 121 Pages - 05/14/2021 (Publication...

The author of this anime art book is Kadokawa. This anime art book is under the series Steins: Gate, and it comes with a magnificent collection of art illustrations that in complete full color.

Attack on Titan -Shingeki no Kyojin- Art Book 3

Attack on Titan "Shingeki no Kyojin" Art...
  • Kyoji Asano (Author)
  • Japanese (Publication Language)
  • 152 Pages - 02/28/2014 (Publication...

Written by Kyouzi Asano and edited by Kodansha Comics, this anime art book is pretty popular and made up of original illustrated colored drawings.

Persona 4 Arena: Official Design Works

Persona 4 Arena: Official Design Works
  • Trade paperback
  • 176 pages
  • Brand new Fight and survive towards the...
  • Atlus (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

The main inspiration behind this anime art book is the title Persona 4 Arena. This breathtaking anime art book is an instant masterpiece that demonstrates character profiles, rough sketches, and storyboards through illustrations that can’t be denied a 5-star rating.

Shigenori Soejima P-STUDIO Art Unit ARTWORKS 2010-2017 2nd Persona Game

Shigenori Soejima P-STUDIO Art Unit ART...
  • 週刊ファミ通編集部 (Author)
  • Japanese (Publication Language)
  • 208 Pages - 05/14/2021 (Publication...

This stylish anime art book comes in the form of an album and is written by Shigenori Soejima in conjunction with P-STUDIO. The author introduces this awesome anime artbook after the massively admired “Shigenori Soejima Art Works 2004-2010”. Not only does the author include artworks from 2010-2017, but he also showcases more than 135 art designs that were illustrated for magazines by the industry’s top talent.

Eternal: Ilya Kuvshinov Illustration Works

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ETERNAL: ILya Kuvshinov Illustration...
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 224 Pages - 11/19/2019 (Publication...

This anime art book, written by Ilya Kuvshinov, comprises more than 300 brand new social media artworks posted by the artist. This book is the second one after Momentary and includes commercial works from Ilya’s, which add extra experience to this book.

The author gained popularity and has performed at exhibitions and created more visual designs like the anime ‘The Wonderland.’ Ilya Kuvshinov has established a base of a million followers on Instagram and influences other illustrators worldwide. You can get this anime artbook if you are looking for different art inspirations.

The Art of The Wonderland (Japanese Edition)

The Art of The Wonderland (Japanese...
  • Japanese (Publication Language)
  • 220 Pages - 01/01/2020 (Publication...

This anime art book turns out to be filled with concept art, significant development of character, and mind-blowing backgrounds.

Ilya Kuvshinov writes this book, and it is a foundation of a movie concept, and it is a pure inspiration for anyone – artist or not. If you are looking for inspiration, this is one of the best anime art books you would want.

You can buy this book purely for the terrific art that comes with it.

The Art of Howl’s Moving Castle

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The Art of Howl's Moving Castle
1,450 Reviews
The Art of Howl's Moving Castle
  • The Art of Howl s Moving Castle
  • Hardcover Book
  • Miyazaki, Hayao (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 256 Pages - 07/05/2005 (Publication...

A short time after Hayao Miyazaki won an Academy Award for his movie Spirited Away; he came up with this masterpiece – The Art of Howl’s Moving Castle, an anime art book based on the novel “Howl’s Moving Castle” written by Diana Wynne Jones. The story gave Hayao the chance to create a fantasy work just when science and magic were popular in the 19th century. He retains all of the novel’s major characters.

Inside this anime art book, you can experience the brilliant designs of Howl (the wizard), Sophie (the girl who carries an extraordinary curse), and of course, the castle (owned by Howl himself).

This anime art book is overflowing with a collection of sketches, background drawings/paintings, and images.

If you are a fan of animation artworks, you will admire the classic works of Hayao Miyazaki in this anime art book.

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Table Of Contents

Hey! Don't Forget Your Guide!

When I was starting to draw digital art, everything was new to me. I didn’t know what to think about digital art or even how to draw. I kind of started from the beginning. I was scraping information through various sites, trying to get a complete picture, however, only ending up with a fractured picture of how to approach it all.

That was the reason why I collected 5 of the most important tips you should know as an aspiring digital artist. The guide also has a checklist for creating that professional line art. And to top it all, I’ve gathered 52 tips that every anime artist should know.

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