A Message from the Masamune Shirow
First of all, I want to express my heartfelt thanks to everyone at (in alphabetical order) Atlas, Bandai, Byakuya Shobo, Fujimi Shobo, Hakusensha, Koade Kikaku, Kodansha, NAXAT, Seishinsha, and Studio Proteus, all of whom cheerfully cooperated in putting this book together.
This book is a fairly complete collection of the full-color illustrations I did from 1981 to 1991. About the only pieces missing are the few I did during my fanzine period or mailed off to various individuals. The book covers Appleseed One through Five, and even includes some rejects and rough drafts. However, I did leave out 34 color pages from Ghost in the Shell: 19 pages drawn especially for the book edition, and 15 monochrome pages that were colored later. Since that edition has 64 color pages, I didn't want to reduce its value intentionally.
Also, the Intron Depot series will not include the Exon Depot full-color stories.
Since the rough layout of this book was my own doing, it's not a pretty sight. We tried to trim it so you could see every drawing out to its edges, while keeping the white border to a minimum.
The book contains 193 full-color works (excluding the rough drafts on the page one, and counting as one work each the multi-panel pages from Dominion and Ghost in the Shell, as well as the separated panels of the Dominion "Seaside" poster and the back cover of the Orion collection). Of these, 47 are published here for the first time. There are 25 monochrome illustrations (page seven is counted as full-colors).
I have wanted to put together a collection of my work for some time, whether or not it got published commercially. Now I can put this period of my work behind me and move on. If you enjoy it, dear readers, I can't ask for anything more. Enough preliminaries already; go ahead and look at the pictures! Shirow December 12, 1991