Austin Kleon's Blog

September 3, 2015

ideas the search for ideas

I’m continuing to have fun taking an X-Acto to the newspaper instead of a marker, though I fear the TSA will make me leave it at home for the upcoming tour…

i did not pick this story it was assigned to me

i can't stop now i've grown attached to the not-so-distant future

we're on the verge of being happy according to the available data

just keep telling yourself it's art

See the first batch of popouts here and more on my Instagram.

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Published on September 03, 2015 14:14 • 1 view

August 14, 2015

i am a longtime fan of you

This week I traded my marker for an X-acto blade. It was one of those switches that seems obvious in hindsight, but I can’t say there was anything intentional about it. Just sort of happened. (Certainly inspired bythe work of Brian Dettmer, Kelli Anderson, and Andrea Dezso.) Follow along as I make them on Twitter or Instagram.

ships in a current

nearly there

comfort in the work

put to good use

help

when we know nothing

carnage

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Published on August 14, 2015 08:19 • 30 views

August 11, 2015

tour dates

I’m headed out on tour this fall to promote The Steal Like An Artist Journal. Check out the currently scheduled cities and subscribe to my newsletter for updates.

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Published on August 11, 2015 13:07 • 29 views

July 30, 2015

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Ted Weinstein interviewed me for his new podcast, The Work Of Art.

In part one, we talked aboutlimitations as a source of creativity, how to take more artistic risks, the value of old fashioned tools as well as social media to build community, and how to keep one’s art fresh:

http://www.twliterary.com/audiofiles/TWOA/TWOA_20150722_AustinKleonPart1.mp3

In part two, we talked about whywomen artists are better role models for maintaining work-family balance, how to raise creative children, th...

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Published on July 30, 2015 13:21 • 33 views

July 22, 2015

noun-vs-verb-color

Lots of people want to be the noun without doing the verb. They want the job title without the work.

“Forget about being a Writer,” says novelist Ann Packer. “Follow the impulse to write.”

Let go of thething that you’re trying to be (the noun), andfocus on the actual work you need to be doing(the verb).

Doing the verbwill take you someplace further and far more interesting than just wanting the noun.

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Published on July 22, 2015 12:39 • 56 views

July 7, 2015

Kelton Reid invited me to chat and I blabbed so much he had to post the interview in two parts. Here’s part one:

And here’s part two:

Topics we discussed:

Why You Should Read More Than You Write How a Paper Dictionary Can Improve Your Writing The Difference Between Little Writing and Big Writing Why You Should Research Out in the Open How Your Daily Ritual Can Save You from Failure 3 Symptoms of Writer’s Block and How to Cure Them Why You Should Print Your Work and Read It Aloud How to Ha...
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Published on July 07, 2015 12:53 • 24 views

June 14, 2015

to be a teacher but remain a student

C.S. Lewis wrote a great introduction to hisReflections on the Psalmsthat I used in the “Be An Amateur” section of my last book:

I write for the unlearned about things in which I am unlearned myself… It often happens that two schoolboys can solve difficulties in their work for one another better than the master can… The fellow-pupil can help more than the master because he knows less. The difficulty we want him to explain is one he has recently met. The expert met it so long ago that he has...

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Published on June 14, 2015 13:28 • 40 views

June 2, 2015

interviewing at bookcon 2015

Last weekend in NYC, PBS’ Book View Now interviewed me at BookCon 2015, and then asked if I would guest host and interview my friends Jessica Hagy and Elle Luna about their work. I had a lot of fun—I like interviewing and would like to do more of it.

Video of my interview:

Video of me interviewing Elle:

Video of me interviewing Jessica and Elle together:

Photo by Bruce Tracy

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Published on June 02, 2015 12:45 • 18 views

interviewing at bookcon 2015

Last weekend in NYC, PBS’ Book View Now interviewed me at BookCon 2015, and then asked if I would guest host and interview my friends Jessica Hagy and Elle Luna about their work. I had a lot of fun—I like interviewing and would like to do more of it. Watch the video here, or below. (Our segment starts around 02:05:00.)

Photo by Bruce Tracy

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Published on June 02, 2015 12:45 • 24 views

May 21, 2015

tufte taking a picture

I first read Edward Tufte’s booksin 2006 when I was a 23-year-old librarian who didn’t even know there was such a thing as a designer. (Here are the maps I drew ofBeautiful Evidence and Envisioning Information.) The books hada big impact on me, so much so that I appliedto Carnegie Mellon’s information design program. (I got in, but wound up movingto Texas and becoming a web designer instead.)

Last weekend I had some Tex-Mex with E.T. and walked around the alleys of Austin taking photos of f...

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Published on May 21, 2015 13:58 • 46 views