Wednesday, 18 June 2008

Books to feed your creative soul

I have a huge pile of books by my bedside, most of them are about personal development in one way or another. I only seem to manage one novel a year. I seem to have collected quite a collection of books on the creative process. I also have a penchant for coffee table art books. I would love to share my books with others and as my Artist's Way course ended yesterday :( although we are going to continue as a 'creative cluster', I think I will invite everyone round to my house to glean inspiration from my collection. By the way, tempting though it is to link to Amazon and cream off a bit of cash that way I urge to to try and find these books at your local independent bookshop if you can, please!

These are my favourite books to awaken creativity and stimulate a joyful, juicy life:

The Queen of juicy living is of course SARK.
I discovered her almost 20 years ago when I was a spaced out young raver. Her childlike drawings and hand written pages mirrored my wide eyed wonder at the time. I still open them now and reconnect with that innocence and exuberance. I love that she encourages us to take loads of naps.
I have these books by her:

A Creative Companion
How to Free Your Creative Spirit
1991, Celestial Arts/Ten Speed Press, ISBN: 0890876517

This book is your creative companion. It will help you re-learn how to free your creative spirit. We all started out creatively free. Remember the sandbox? All you needed was warm toes in bare sand, and maybe a good bucket. Then you could build your own world.

Inspiration Sandwich
Stories to Inspire Our Creative Freedom
1992, Celestial Arts/Ten Speed Press, ISBN: 0890876789

Stories to inspire your own special world.

Succulent Wild Woman
May 1997, Simon and Schuster, ISBN: 068483376X
This book is my glowing invitation to you -- to live a rich, succulent life! I explore love, sexuality, romance, money, fat, fear and creativity. It's a little bit like reading my diary -- with permission. Succulence is powerFull! and so are we as women.

The Bodacious Book of Succulence
Daring to Live Your Succulent Wild Life
May 1998, Simon and Schuster, ISBN: 0684833778

I wish for this book to catapult you out of bed and smack into the center of one of your dreams, or lure you back to bed, where you will lie helplessly laughing at all your mistakes and frozen moments.

I wish for this book to free the part of your soul that longs to write epic novels, recite Yeats by heart, play a musical instrument by magic, or perform in a play about your life that you create and design. Most of all, I want this book to give you a boost up over the fence that prevents you from moving forward and inward.

Through SARK I discovered one of her proteges Sabrina Ward Harrison
and was entranced by her delightful, scrawly, sensitive illustrations and moving poetry. I have just looked at her website and she has written one of my favourite ever quotes:
Preface to Walt Whitman's "Leaves of Grass"

"This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul; and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body"
Go have a look

I have these books by
Sabrina Ward Harrison:

The True and the Questions: A Journal
by Sabrina Ward Harrison
"I journal to understand my life as I'm living it. I use my journals as a place to put the things that spill out over the edges of my life: photo negatives, scraps of paper, poems I have heard and loved, my sorrow, and epiphanies, the true and the questions. My journals have become guideposts for my life. Maybe it's the same way for you, and so I invite you inside my world. With this journal, you can create the book you most want to find." - Sabrina Ward Harrison

Spilling Open: The Art of Becoming Yourself
by Sabrina Ward Harrison
"Sabrina's work defines categorization...Once I turned the page, I discovered that her work was too elaborate to simply be called a book. Spilling Open is an intense, poetic and visually powerful diary...Sabrina Ward Harrison could be the offspring of May Sarton,, Henry Miller, Ritke, or Whitman. Or she could just be a regular girl like me. And that, for once, is what gets my attention." --Whitney Matheson,

The final book in my list is my most recent acquisition, guerilla artist (I love that job title) Keri Smith's Living Out Loud: An Activity Book to Fuel a Creative Life,
a fun book full of fold out pages, games and stickers, guaranteed to tickle your inner child! Here's her blog, The Wish Jar.

1 comment:

Goddess of Leonie said...

Hi Trixie!

Just found you via the SARK Forum...
and I totally agree on these beautiful and inspirational books... I have all the ones you listed!

Bright and deep blessings on your creative journey,