Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Becoming a Life Change Artist

Are you planning to look for a new job, new career, or just a new perspective on life this year? Then Becoming a Life Change Artist: 7 Creative Skills to Reinvent Yourself at Any Stage of Life by Fred Mandell, Ph.D and Kathleen Jordan, Ph.D is the book for you!

Before I planned to interview Kathy Jordan for my Five {5} Creative Questions series, I won a copy of her book. I was so excited that I dove right into it and have admitted that I never wanted it to end. Yes, it was that good.

I also have to admit, that as a trained art historian and personal development enthusiast, this is the book I wish I would have written. It explores the creative process through the work and life of such artists as Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso and Frida Kahlo. Using the creative process of artists and translating it to personal growth is genius.

Throughout Becoming a Life Change Artist, Mandell and Jordan, share accounts of people, just like you and I, who have overcome adversity to achieve their goals, whether it was going back to school, switching careers, or choosing to stay home and care for their children. Interspersed with this are the stories of successful artists and how they used the creative process to complete some of the finest paintings and sculptures in the canon of art history.

Not only will you learn about the creative process of artists, but you'll also learn the specific skills involved to make your change real. And with plenty of exercises after each chapter to get you thinking, this book keeps you involved in your own creative process.

Finally, my favorite part of the book happens to fall at the end, in the appendix. There you'll find some pretty amazing resources including the Creativity Calculator, where you can test your own creative skills and learn which part of your process could be improved. Plus, the Preparation Activities appendix provides a ready-made list of creativity-enhancing triggers.

It looks like Becoming a Life Change Artist will be my go-to creative companion for the next year, as I get ready for big changes in my own life.

  • How can you creatively reinvent you life?

Monday, January 10, 2011

New Year, New Creative Goals

As I looked at the list of my creative activities from  last year, I was startled and saddened how few there were. Yes, I started school, took a few art/jewelry classes, attended some exhibitions but none of those were planned, they just happened.

I have also mentioned in the past how much I dislike New Year's resolutions, because, well I never have time to do them in the beginning of the year and then I just feel bad for the rest of the year because I don't have any!

This year I've decided to be more intentional about my creative activities. That's why I've chosen to focus on three specific creative goals. The activities for each goal are meant to not be spontaneous but involve planning and stretch my creativity in ways that may have scared me in the past.

Here they are:
  1. Learn the art of glass blowing by taking a class at the Glass Bubble Project.
  2. Try improv by taking a class at Something Dada.
  3. Write some poetry and have it critiqued during a workshop at the LIT.
As always, I'll be blogging about my creative adventures during the year. I hope you'll join me!
  • So what are YOUR creative goals for this year?