My top 3 Book Recommendations for Creative People
One of my favourite things to talk about is creativity. Not just “art” or “painting”- but creativity. The divine urge to make something that was not there before. The need to express the deepest parts of oneself.
A common thread I have noticed in these conversations is the yearning and thirst to know more about this elusive subject. Many people are absolutely overflowing with ideas and passion but often don’t know how or where to start. Others feel that it is unrealistic to make a career out of their creative passion. Whether it is your dream to make your creativity your career, or you’re just looking for a little bravery and support to continue on your creative journey, there are many wonderful books out there to help guide the way.
These three books come up in every creativity conversation I have. They have all been life changing for me, and it gives me great joy to share them with you.
1. The Artists Way by Julia Cameron.
This book is in the “self-publishing hall of fame” and for a good reason. This is not just a book- it is also a work book, guide, healer, and inspirer. It is a 12-week course in creativity that you can complete solo or in a group. The idea is that through the exercises and readings, you can truly get to know your creativity and gain self-confidence and remove creative blocks. It is an opportunity to face past hurts, heal and let them go. The exercises within are both challenging and fun.
This book is fantastic for anyone that wishes to further their creative expression, regardless of their field. I wholeheartedly believe this book holds a key for everyone. Big statement, I know, but you never know until you try. Or in this case - give it a read.
2. Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert
Not since The Artists Way has a book had such a huge effect on me. To be truthful, I did not read this- I listened to it (oh the joys of technology!) while I was painting. After I had heard the first sentence, I was in tears - tears of relief. The world has changed a lot since The Artists Way, and there is a lot of new ground in the creative and business world today. In her down-to-earth, no sugar-coating style, Gilbert explores many of the challenges and triumphs of being a creative mind in the modern world. This book is a fantastic read for those in a creative field who may feel confused and alone at by how quickly things are changing, and also for those wanting to begin their journey.
Throughout the book, Gilbert dispels many myths about creativity, often using her personal experience. Best of all, she explores magic- that elusive magic that creativity is. This book had me crying tears of grief, fist pumping the air in celebration, laughing out loud, and waving my arms in the air wailing “thank youuuuuu.”
3. The Artist's Soul: Daily Nourishment to Support Creative Growth by Linda Coons
This little treasure, which also happens to be highly recommended by Julia Cameron is a fantastic little friend of a book. It is in the style of a “daily meditation” where each day of the year has its own little passage. The aim of this book is artistic healing, recovery, and empowerment. Each passage goes into a different area of understanding and ends with a statement that you can read out loud. Full disclosure- I haven’t read the whole book yet! My copy lives on my painting desk so only on the days I work there do I read a passage. It is a ritual that I utterly enjoy and find incredibly encouraging.
After reading the short daily message, you will find your mind going back to the theme during the day. Personally, my mind revisits it often during the day and sometimes I re-read the passage several times. The beauty of this is that the information and experiences really sink in!
So, kindred friend, I highly recommend a visit to your local book shop (or a search on Amazon, or a download to your kindle- whatever suits you). These books are there to help, inspire and most of all, let you know that your creativity is wonderfully divine and that you are worthy of expressing it. You don’t have to do this alone. You aren’t the only soul going through this, AND it doesn’t have to be so hard! Perhaps open up a conversation about creativity to someone you meet this week. Who knows, perhaps they already know one of these books! Happy reading!