Clannad Visual Fan Book
if only I knew how to read it...
Posted by tai on Jan 5, 2009 under Commentary, Print, Special

Finally, three months after placing my order, I received my Clannad Visual Fan Book yesterday, shipped all the way from Nippon. And so it is about time I revive TsundereStorm, I’ve been on “hiatus” for more than a month (though occasionally I was finalizing my design for TsundereStorm 1.0 in my sketchbook on the subway).

Yeah, working in retail is busy, especially before the Christmas season. I finally got back into the animanga business after the New Year. Good timing for the arrival of my Clannad book!

The first page of the book is a delicious Kyou Fujibayashi conveniently locked in the gym equipment storage room.


This softcover artbook has 144 full-colour pages. The first 38 pages is a gallery of images of Nagisa, Kyou, Ryou, Kotomi, Tomoyo and Fuuko, these are the scans you frequently see on high-resolution wallpaper and scan imageboards like konachan.com and moe.imouto.org. As beautiful as these illustrations are, they arn’t the reason I get these artbooks, since these images are readily available for download from the aforementioned sites.

The following 34 pages are character bios and gestures. There’s a lot of Japanese text here, a lot more than I had anticipated. I’ll have to get my friend to translate it for me or teach me Japanese. The only information I can get out of it are facts that have to do with numbers, like bust/hip/waist measurements, birthdays, etc, but the sketches and miscellaneous illustrations are the main reason I get artbooks, since it gives a bit of insight into the design and development process of the series.

There’s a surprising amount of detail put into the character design, it is to be expected for a character-based show to have highly detailed characters but I didn’t know they would go to the point of making separate illustrations for Tomoya’s wristwatch, Nagisa’s shoe, etc.

All the supporting characters are accounted for and there’s also a section that goes step-by-step through each of the main characters’ stories. Again there’s a ton of text here and I wish I could tell you what all this text is explaining. They numbered each episode by character episode and by airing episode. For example, episode 10 is the 3rd part of Nagisa’s and Kotomi’s arc, the 4th part of Kyou/Ryou’s arc, the 2nd part of Tomoyo’s arc. I’m not really sure how this would be of use, but I might find it interesting when I start playing the game (which will be when After Story finishes airing.)

The Story section of the book is 56 pages long and covers the season on a per-episode basis. There are storyboards for the major parts of each episode. I find it amazing how the producers can show so much emotion in the characters from such simple sketches.

A small part of this section details the architecture used in the animation. As architecture student, it was this section that made me decide to purchase the fanbook (I glanced at scans I found online) as there are very detailed hand-drawn perspective illustrations of the school, the houses, and the rooms in the world of Clannad.

The last 16 pages is a staff and cast interview, unfortunately this is almost all text so again I can’t give any details here. But there are nice portrait photos of the main cast.


中原麻衣 Mai Nakahara (left, Nagisa Furukawa) and 野中藍 Ai Nonaka (right, Fuuko Ibuki)

At the very end there’s a small gallery of official collectible goods, like postcards, cell phone dangly-things, calendars, and other small miscellaneous accessories. I think the little card that comes slipped in the middle of my book is an order card, but since I don’t live in Japan it doesn’t really do me much good.

Another artbook review should be coming soon!


  • On January 31st, 2009 at 01:17,
    Tran wrote:

    Are these all the pics in the Clannad book? cos there seems to be too few. Do you know anysite where i may be able to download the whle book?

  • On March 11th, 2009 at 21:21,
    tai wrote:

    Tran,
    I only uploaded a selected few. I got these scans from moe.imouto.org , you can find the full collection there.

  • On April 5th, 2009 at 06:31,
    KazeYUki wrote:

    Hai hai, do you know where I could order the same thing(the visual fan book)… After looking at your scans it made me want to have one of my own…

  • On April 5th, 2009 at 07:13,
    tai wrote:

    I’m glad you like the book. I got my copy from JBOX but it’s no longer listed so they probably won’t be getting any more in stock. I just checked a few retailers, benippon seems the most promising. It’s a pretty hot item so it’s probably hard to find in-stock, but there should be constant back-orders. Depending on where you live there may be bookstores that have Japanese animanga publications, I know there are in the larger American cities. Good luck!

  • On April 9th, 2009 at 10:15,
    KazeYUki wrote:

    Hey thanks for your advice and FYI im in SINGAPORE ^^, I’ll try my luck then hehe…

  • On June 1st, 2010 at 12:36,
    fuko wrote:

    hi my name is magdalen i love clannad so much and also does any one know where i can find the book seires to this plzz if u do plzz wright back and tell me plzzzzzzzzzzzzzz i want 2 know yours trully,
    magdalena :b 🙂

  • On June 9th, 2010 at 17:01,
    tai wrote:

    Clannad was adapted from a visual novel meant to be played as an interactive story. Kyoto Animation consolidated all of the plot branches from the visual novel into the two TV episodes I’m assuming you have watched, and there is also a movie version as well. However, there was never a (official) manga or light novel version of Clannad which is what I’m assuming you’re looking for when you ask for “book series”.

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