Railway Girls and Scenery Pictorial Book (鉄道少女百景) is a collection of all newly illustrated works featuring fictional girls at real life train stations and railways. Much like in previous pictorial books that have come out, information about the trains is provided throughout the art book.
This A4-sized, 64-page art book is quite short for a commercial production. It may even feel a bit shorter because every illustration except for the cover is a two-page spread. This means larger sized illustrations, but also fewer pictures overall. The cover art is by Kishida Mel, and in total, 23 illustrators take part in this production.
Both Ame (雨) and Yuu (優)---who were both illustrators for RubiconHearts's Neko to Shoujo doujinshi---have illustrations in Railway Girls and Scenery Pictorial Book. Though there are trains in both of the above illustrations, they weren't a requirement, and many of the scenes are staged neatly by railways.
I was impressed with the variety in the illustrations, and not just because of the artists, but because of the scenarios as well. There are reunion pictures, arrivals, departures, school trips---lots of everyday scenes that have been brought together in a creative way. Pictured above are illustrations from Hidaka Nami, Nabana, Jonouchi Nene, and toi8.
The backgrounds and scenery do a lot to elevate these illustrations; even when the character art work isn't engaging, having a fleshed out, detailed background makes just about anything look more finished and professional ^^; Naomi Yano was the photographer and writer for this book to keep the train and location details accurate. I would have liked to see the photo inspirations for some of these scenes, but I guess they were just for the artists to work with. The artists above from left to right are Konatsu Karasu, Tokunou Shotaro, Kajimiya, Saitom, Hagiwara Rin, and Akitu Taira.
While the train commentaries happen every six illustrations or so, the artists' commentaries are in the index, along with their romanized names and website addresses so you can easily find more of their work if you're interested. The beautifully illustrated scenes really make Railway Girls and Scenery Pictorial Book a nice collection overall, even if it's a little on the short side.
- Title: Railway Girls and Scenery Pictorial Book
- タイトル: 鉄道少女百景
- Pages: 64
- Release date: 07/13/2010
- Buy: Amazon Japan