Review: 187 Tips for Artists

January 29, 2010

I’ve been doing a lot of reading lately, and have discovered that books on creativity are bullshit. Since the one that inspired my last post, several more pieces of Freecycle fodder have graced my bathroom bookshelf. Why are there in the bathroom? well, I could say that its because its my thinking spot, but its really because these rapid-fire textual insults to common sense irritate my digestive system… and sometimes its just easier to start off at the final destination.

In addition to having pages with as much text as a fortune cookie, this book is blatantly geared toward painters, a detail that was conveniently left out on the author’s website.

What am going on about? “Get a plant”.  An entire page of this book (3 sentences) is dedicated to the benefits of having a plant in your studio. What? WHAT? Really? I just paid $18 to be told I need a plant?! Wait… it gets better. “Wear pearls”. “Make faces at yourself in the bathroom mirror” I’m a dermatillomaniac… its a given. “Read a trashy novel” how about a trash book on creativity? “Wear you jammies in the middle of the day” Thats kinda… status quo. “Embarrass yourself” Oh please, lets not go there. In fact, lets not go anywhere else at all.

Did Peggy Hill write this book?

I can’t wait to talk to my life coach on Monday and tell her the good news; I’ve decided to throw up on a stack of copy paper, tape it together, and announce my first publication on the creative mind.

Really though, this rash of disappointing books has moved me to write down ideas for my own on the same topic. Why do I keep buying these? I guess I’m hoping for something groundbreaking I hadn’t thought of; something that will change my world.  I  need a book on creativity that doesn’t audibly suck, and I probably have to write it myself.

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