Heralding from the fine folks at Abrams Books, “The Art of Star Wars: The High Republic (Volume 1) (opens in new tab)” recently arrived on Earth to expose the genesis of the charismatic new heroes, villains, and environments in Lucasfilm Publishing and its worldwide partners’ ongoing “The High Republic” campaign.
Inside this 224-page hardcover written by Kristin Baver (“Skywalker: A Family at War (opens in new tab)‘) is an exclusive look at rare concept art, detailed character and costume sketches, spaceships, vehicles, weapons, and creature designs used to flesh out the multi-pronged literary venture.
“The High Republic” publishing initiative for the “Star Wars” expanded universe was first announced by Disney back in February of 2020, with a bold planned lineup of interconnected books, novels, and comics set 200 years before “Star Wars: The Phantom Menace” when the fabled Jedi Knights were at their zenith as guardians of peace and justice in the galaxy.
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“It was a joy to work on this book,” Baver tells Space.com. “I had so much fun interviewing everyone from the artists and authors to Lucasfilm executives. The process really took me back to my roots as a newspaper reporter, interviewing sources and finding the best way to organize the story. I came in long after the initial discussions, so one of the first things I did was interview everyone who was present at those first brainstorming sessions to reconstruct the bones of the initiative. I was given complete access to the concept art that was being generated, and worked with artists to talk through individual pieces and the inspirations behind their work.”
Here’s the official description:
“The Art of Star Wars: The High Republic” takes fans behind the scenes of Phase I of Lucasfilm Publishing’s massive crossover event. Collecting the very best concept art of the new characters, worlds, ships, and creatures of The High Republic—designed jointly by the Lucasfilm Visualists and a team of legendary comic book and Star Wars artists, including Phil Noto, Iain McCaig, and Ryan Church, among many others.
Presented alongside development materials and interviews with “High Republic” architects Claudia Gray (“Star Wars The High Republic: Into the Dark”), Justina Ireland (“Star Wars The High Republic: A Test of Courage”), Daniel José Older (“Star Wars The High Republic: Race to Crashpoint Tower”), Cavan Scott (Marvel Comics’ “The High Republic”), and Charles Soule (“Star Wars The High Republic: Light of the Jedi)”, “The Art of Star Wars: The High Republic” is an essential guide to the creation, design, and realization of a new era of “Star Wars” storytelling.
Baver, an associate editor at StarWars.com and steeped in the franchise’s legends and lore, wrote this edition during the pandemic. She found it fascinating to see how other global events that had transpired during the creative process for “The High Republic” manifested in the specific designs, the characters, and the stories.
“One of my favorite discoveries throughout the process was realizing that even though the art was created by many artists and storytellers working on their own, there was an incredible spirit of collaboration in sharing characters among authors, and with individual artists working together on some of the same pieces or to evolve the designs of specific elements,” she adds. “There’s a tremendous amount of love and consideration that went into this initiative, and you can really see it in the art they created.”
Abrams Books’ “The Art of Star Wars: The High Republic (Volume I) (opens in new tab)” is available now.