Croft's Reviews > Art and Fear: Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking

Art and Fear by David Bayles
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's review
Mar 30, 2016

it was amazing
Recommended for: Those with Artist Block
Read in January, 2013 — I own a copy

I picked up this book in a panic while working on my thesis project. Halfway through my grad studies I got artist block. (I should say that I am an artist and at the time was finishing my MFA in fine art photography.) Until you have hit this wall, you truly don't understand the paralyzing effect of this.

"Art and Fear" by David Bayles is about how to create/make art. Bayles offers motivation and advice on how to address the psychological blocks to creating art. Those annoying voices in your head that keep telling you that you are not an artist, not worthy, are untalented, yadah, yadah, yadah... Bayles advice is pretty straight forward and what you would expect from a motivational book.

In addition, Bayles writing style has a nice flow and is easy to read. It is most useful to artists needing motivation. I believe it has kernels of positive advice for any artist, but it is much more engaging and interesting if you are suffering from a creative block. I gave the book four stars because it helped me when I was creatively stuck. Therefore, I keep a copy handy on my bookshelf just in case I find myself suffering again. Probably, I would have given it three stars if I had just read this in passing. While the writing style and information are useful, much of the information is not new. That being said, it "did" help me move through a debilitating attack of artist block, which I am forever in debt to the author.

And yes, I did struggle past my block and finish creating my project that has since seen two solo exhibitions and is scheduled for another. So, if you are an artist who is stuck and wondering if reading this book (or any of these types of motivational books) can help, rest assured that just making the effort to pick up a copy is the first step through that wall.

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Reading Progress

03/30/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-1 of 1) (1 new)

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Aimee Tariq I feel the same way :)

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