I bought Austin Kleon’s “Steal Like An Artist” on a whim after reading about it in Shelf Awareness, a daily email subscription I get about books and the industry. Being an author myself, a poet, and dabbling in painting and crafts, I like to think of myself as an artist. And like all artists, I’m frequently at a loss as to how to get the creative juices flowing and the muse talking.
Kleon’s book was the boost I needed on how to do just that. At just 140 pages, it’s a quick read and is filled with insightful quotes, fun drawings, and inspirational photographs. I read it on my Kindle and found myself highlighting something on practically every page. After finishing it, I immediately bought 4 hard copies – 1 for myself and 3 to share with my creative friends who I know will benefit from it as well.
Kleon focuses on the fact that it’s okay to “steal” from those artists, musicians, actors, painters, writers, singers, etc. who are our heroes. We imitate them as children and want to be like them when we “grow up.” So why now steal from them? Kleon stresses that he’s not talking about plagiarism; that’s just copying. He’s talking about taking from the elements of those people that inspire us in the first place. It’s the perfect way to learn and to eventually develop your own style.
I’d like to think we can apply Kleon’s advice to any part of our lives really, so those who aren’t so creative might enjoy the book as well. I especially liked his “log book” idea because while I enjoy blogging, it seems I can never squeeze in time to write out long and insightful blog posts. His quick check list log book entries is a perfect way to take notes and remember the things that are important each day.
And this book has inspired a new post I’ll be starting here on my blog! As of April 28th, I’m going to post each day a “Log Book” entry of at least 5 things I did that day. So be watching for my Lone Writer Log Book posts each day!
Click on the little book to the left to get your own copy of STEAL LIKE AN ARTIST!