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Making Art a Practice: How to Be the Artist You Are
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Making Art a Practice: How to Be the Artist You Are

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  142 ratings  ·  25 reviews
Helping artists catapult into further action, this guide is a treasury of insight and inspiration. Rather than focus on art techniques that build skills or overcome creative blocks through playful activities or writing, this guide walks the artist through exercises designed to develop the personal qualities critical to being an artist in the world, such as courage, the abi ...more
Paperback, 128 pages
Published June 12th 2013 by Findhorn Press (first published June 10th 2013)
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Nov 17, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: art-book
I hate to say this, it probably is a very good book but I honestly couldn't go any further than the 3rd paragraph in the preface where it says and I quote "We loose our enthusiasm...". For real? OK, I realize I am being petty. I truly did not want that one mistake to ruin it for me, but unfortunately it did take the wind out of my sails in how I approached this book and it did make me "lose my enthusiasm" about it. There is the author, there are editors, yet seriously no one caught this before a ...more
This book had so much to offer and I felt encouraged in my forever art journey. So much to comment on, it is a short book but worth the time and effort. I think that the author spoke to my inner critic that tries to convince me that art should be perfect to be accepted or acknowledged. She says the opposite and also gives a lot of good reasons why we don't have to be perfectionists. ...more
May 21, 2021 rated it liked it
Great for beginners looking for guidance (while trying to navigate the art world independently).
Anya Toomre
Aug 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Fabulous book! Full of ideas and inspiration for both growing and developing your own art practice but also one with other.
Autumn Kovach
Jul 16, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: art-inspiration
I honestly didn't read it that much just because it's not really where I'm at right now. Lately I have no trouble being creative or getting myself into a creative situation (sketch meet-up, joining a ballroom dance class, shooting film, etc). Also, my photography is more at the business stage where my shoots are motivated by a marketing standpoint in addition to "documenting life" purpose.

This looks like a great book for someone who's always thought about incorporating more art in their life an
Jonathan Gracey
Sep 12, 2018 rated it liked it
I appreciate that she connected the practice of art with the practice of meditation. She’s convinced me they have a lot in common. She states the creative journey is to “peel away the layers of our personal uncertainty to find the light and strength at our core.” It’s easy to get sidetracked on whether of not what we’re making is any good. But we don’t need to try to judge that. Our journey is the doing, not the judging.
Jul 30, 2017 rated it really liked it

It was good but could have been more in-depth.
Aug 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this art book. Gave some very pratical information. Quick read.
Jan 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Stimulating and useful with good insight and beautiful examples of how to start a daily art practice. The principles herein were inspired by the philosophy of yoga practice.
Jun 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: library-book
Making Art a Practice is the latest book to be removed from my bedside. Unfortunately, it is one of those books I now have to place on my wish list to have my own copy.

First off, I believe everyone is creative in some form. It might be not painting the Mona Lisa, but fundamentally I believe everyone is and can be creative. And that we need to use that creativity to achieve balance in our lives.

Cat Bennett, the author, says "Our goal is simply to know ourselves as the creative beings we are and
"If you want to build a ship, don't drum up people to collect wood and don't assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea." ~ Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

[Creating a work space filled with visual inspiration or music vs. a Spartan environment] We only need to check to see if our environment is lifting us up or weighing us down... Do what's necessary to bring life to the place." (p.31)

There are many great rit
Amber Macgregor
Oct 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This is an amazing book for anyone who is or has ever dreamed of being creative in just about any way. This book is based mainly in the realm of visual arts but would benefit anyone creative who has ever doubted their ability to make authentic creative work.
A powerhouse of positive and inspiring short chapters. I did not put it down once. I have learned more about the authentic creative process from this and Cat Bennet's other book, The Confident Creative than I ever did in my four years of Art
Nov 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I was lucky enough to receive Cat Bennett's Making Art a Practice through a First Reads giveaway. The book offers suggestions aimed at grounding an art practice in the now moment, finding one's true artistic self, and diving into the thrills and chills of making art. I'm in my sixties, and that part hasn't grown old for me yet. I'm looking forward to using exercises from Making Art a Practice to up my game, as it were, and break through into another level of expression. ...more
Cindy Richard
Mar 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
A quick but excellent read. This author provided some good suggestions for keeping creativity flowing no matter what type of art you participate in. I marked a lot of suggestions to try out; I really liked the idea of starting an art club (Bennett participates in a Saturday Art Club where they get together on a regular basis for 3 hours at a time to try out different art techniques). This is one I am happy to have on my shelves so I can keep referencing it as needed.
Dec 19, 2013 rated it liked it
This is a beautiful, well-presented book, with many wonderful ideas & suggestions for making a daily,creative practice. However, for me, it was only the last third of the book that I felt was applicable to where I am in my creative journey (thus my 3 star rating). I would highly recommend it though, for someone who is just beginning their creative journey.
Feb 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: art-stuff
3.5 stars. Not terrible, not great. Definitely geared towards beginning artists. I found that I have already accomplished most of the pointers in the book. A lot of the sections were really hard to get through because it came across as a lot of rambling and generalities about art and creativity. There are better books out there for this kind of thing.
Jan 02, 2015 rated it liked it
This book was probably intended for someone who was new to creating art, so it didn't exactly apply to where I'm at. Still, it had some inspiring passages and good advice. I would probably lend this to a new artist, though, or someone who doesn't believe they can be an artist. ...more
Claire Kennedy
Dec 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A must-read for any aspiring or wannabe artist. This book contains 30 exercises that will cause you to think outside the box. These span through various fields of art - dancing, painting, writing - so that it can be read and re-read by a variety of art disciplines.
Nov 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
A nice book, full of many great ideas on how to create. I especially like that it mentions the importance of being in the present; I also like that you don't have to read the whole thing at once - you can come back, pick and choose, and there's always a good idea to get you going. ...more
Aug 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Love this book! Wonderful pep talk for anyone struggling with insecurity or self-consciousness. Will definitely want to re-read this...
Mary Frewer
Jul 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
I liked this book. Helpful for understanding what the "creative process"is. Good practical advice wether you need a jumpstart or some new ways of exploring. ...more
Oct 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I would personally recommend this book to any artist to get further inspired to both understand art and themselves as well.
Jan 02, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really sweet and thoughtful quick read... encourages and inspires different ways to uncover or unblock creativity.
Nov 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
"sublime pie" ...more
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