Creativity Book Wish List | Draw Every Day, Draw Every Way

I wish had the energy to draw every day, or paint… And I wish I had time to read more. Actually, I wish I could buy and read all the books. I really do, at least the ones on the kind of creativity and art that I’m into at the moment.

It’s one of my favorite things in the whole world to spend time in the sofa, with my iced coffee and a book on creativity in my lap. Wrapped in my home made quilt I read a few pages and look at all the inspiring pictures, and often I have a stack of tiny post-it-notes by my side, so I can mark pages I want to come back to later.

Book reviews and recommendations by iHanna who says: I want to read ALL the books!

I read novels, biographies and books for research all the time too, a habit I’ve had since I started reading as a kid, but when I want a dose of inspiration I go to my library of creative books and pick one or two out. I like them equally for the images as for the encouragement and ideas they present in text form.

But since I can’t afford all the shiny, new books I’m curious about (even though they don’t publish as many new books on journaling and mixed media as they did a few years ago) I go browse them online and add them to my for every growing Wish List there. I rarely add them to my cart, but when I do, I hope they’re the right pick. And hey, a girl can dream right?

Here are some of my many, many want-to-read-picks, that I hope will be inspiring to you too, weather or not you want to draw ever day, or just a little more in your everyday life… Let me know if you’ve bought any of these already and give my your thoughts on them? I’d love to get personalized recommendations from you guys.

Creative Books to make us Draw Every Day

Art Before Breakfast: A Zillion Ways to be More Creative No Matter How Busy You Are by Danny Gregory Danny Gregory gave us permission to keep a sketchbook and draw in it many years ago with his first books (my favorite is the awesome The Creative License), so I bet this one is great too.

Here’s what Amazon say about Art before Breakfast:
Packed with the signature can-do attitude that makes beloved artist Danny Gregory a creativity guru to thousands across the globe, this unique guide serves up a hearty helping of inspiration.

For aspiring artists who want to draw and paint but just can’t seem to find time in the day, Gregory offers 5– to 10–minute exercises for every skill level that fit into any schedule—whether on a plane, in a meeting, or at the breakfast table —along with practical instruction on techniques and materials, plus strategies for making work that’s exciting, unintimidating, and fulfilling. Filled with Gregory’s encouraging words and motivating illustrations, Art Before Breakfast teaches readers how to develop a creative habit and lead a richer life through making art.

Yummy, right? And how about this one:

Doodling for Cat People: 50 inspiring doodle prompts and creative exercises for cat lovers by Gemma CorrellDoodling for Cat People is designed to appeal to seasoned artists and doodle enthusiasts alike. Packed with more than 50 fun and inspirational prompts, doodling exercises, and feline-related factoids, professional illustrator Gemma Correll sparks the imagination and spurs cat lovers to explore, experiment, and brainstorm ways to draw and doodle their favorite furry friends with her cute and clever art style.

My reason: I love Gemma Correll‘s humour and punny illustrations, they always makes me laugh. I’ve been following her work online for years, but so far haven’t gotten any merch by her. If I don’t buy this book (which could be a gift for my doodling mom too) I wish for one of her mugs or the t-shirt that simply says nope. Bet you’ve seen it?

Posh Adult Coloring Book: Cats & Kittens for Comfort & Creativity by Flora Chang It’s the same thing with the illustrations by Flora Chang. They draw me in with their florished cuteness. I can’t resist them. Flora posts cuteness to her instagram, and every time I see something by her it makes me wish I’d made it…

Yes, I know. Artist envy is not such a nice thing to feel, but I admit it freely and fix it by admiring her art openly. I think I’ve tweeted out this coloring book quite a few times already. SO cute. Because;

Cats and coloring – a match made in cat heaven.
Charming and friendly cats and kittens to color.
For optimal enjoyment and comfort, please use this book in the company of your favorite cat.

Posh Adult Coloring Book: Happy Doodles for Fun & Relaxation: Flora Chang Flora Chang’s coloring books looks yummy, both the cat one and the newer one, Happy Doodles, with birds on the cover.

Not sure I need another coloring book for grown ups or that I’d be interested in more coloring, but maybe I could keep it as inspiration and learning a few tricks from Flora’s style.

A lot of these coloring books are so beautifully made that they’re worth having as inspiration in your studio, don’t you agree?

If you need excuses to draw every day, or be more creative, you’ve got my permission to make one up. Or read the book An Excuse to Draw:

An Excuse to Draw: Tommy Kane Sketches the World by Tommy KanePerched on a little camping stool, artist Tommy Kane draws what he sees. His remarkable career has taken him around the world, and he has documented the people and places he’s encountered in his unique painting and drawing style—on location—wherever he goes. He calls New York home, but has a growing international following.

An Excuse to Draw is the first book-length collection of Kane’s work, and it is filled with full-page illustrations and reproductions of pages taken from his sketch books.

I’m not a urban sketcher and don’t keep an illustrated diary, but I’m so impressed with those that can, and do, work this way. I love looking at this kind of imagery and be invited into books like this. I purchased another collection book, recently, called Drawn In: A Peek into the Inspiring Sketchbooks of 44 Fine Artists, Illustrators, Graphic Designers, and Cartoonists, by Julia Rothman (from 2011), that I might review here if you’re interested? And for that reason, I’ve got Freehand: Sketching Tips and Tricks Drawn from Art, on my wish list too.

Freehand: Sketching Tips and Tricks Drawn from Art by Helen BirchFrom the Amazon blurb: Creating stylish sketches by hand is easy and fun with this inspiring guide. Freehand breaks down basic drawing techniques into bite-sized chunks, and reveals their practical application in dazzling examples by today’s coolest artists. Over 200 innovative works of art demonstrate all the fundamentals—line, tone, composition, texture, and more—and are presented alongside friendly text explaining the simple techniques used to achieve each stylish effect. The final section of the book offers aspiring artists essential reference materials to hone their drafting skills and practice what they’ve learned. Petite in size but comprehensive in scope, this hip handbook will teach artists of all skill levels how to find their personal drawing style and start making amazing sketches.

Plus of course, Draw Every Day, Draw Every Way, is still on my wish list!
Draw Every Day, Draw Every Way (Guided Sketchbook): Sketch, Paint, and Doodle Through One Creative Year by Jennifer Orkin Lewis #wishlistbooksSketch, Paint, and Doodle Through One Creative Year, a book by artist Jennifer Orkin Lewis, who I follow on Instagram (aka @augustwren). I, like thousand of others, love her style and are impressed by her draw-every-day project, that is on its third year now I think.

About the book Draw Every Day, Draw Every way:

Jennifer Orkin Lewis encourages experimentation with a one-page tutorial at the beginning of each month that outlines accessible ways to draw with different materials, such as ballpoint pens, colored pencils, paint, and collage. Coupled with sections of varying paper types, there is an unlimited canvas available to flourish artistically; brown craft paper pairs well with black ink and white pencil, black paper is great for white and metallic gel pens, and heavy white paper is included for painting.
The journal is not only useful as a stress-reliever and as a mode of personal exploration, but also as a way of changing visual thinking. And when completed, it will serve as a reflection of its owner.
With prompts, tutorials, and unique packaging, Draw Every Day, Draw Every Way is a must-have for those looking to sketch and doodle their way out of an inspirational rut.

If you would splurge on just one of these, which one would you pick?

** Also check out my more in-depth book reviews and Library of Pretty.

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7 Responses to Creativity Book Wish List | Draw Every Day, Draw Every Way

  1. Kate Burroughs says:

    I bought “Draw Every Day, Draw Every Way” recently and was majorly disappointed in it. Not that the book doesnʻt have good ideas of things to draw and methods to do your drawing with. What was disappointing to me was that 3/4 of the book is almost empty pages for you to draw on, with up to 5 words for a prompt of what to draw (195 pages of this versus 46 pages with either her art or actual instruction on them). Really? I have sketchbooks for that and it seemed like a way to fluff the book up to many pages rather than giving more information. If I had thumbed through it in a bookstore I would not have bought it. The paper is OK for ink but really nothing else. So donʻt waste your money on it.

    • iHanna says:

      Thanks Kate, I don’t like that kind of book too much either. I’d rather keep a beautiful book as inspiration in the library, and my sketches and art experiments separate. I think Jennifer’s art deserves a book of their own though! I hope she can print a portfolio book of her work, and include some of her advice for keeping the practice fresh. :-)

  2. Debi says:

    Thanks for sharing these books, Hanna … I’m gonna be checking them out. I love the cat one especially but love the one with the birds as well. : )

  3. Jill c says:

    As an empathetic reader, might I humbly suggest Interlibrary loans? My library has found art books, art dvds, and magazines for me. (I try to be polite about how many I request but my library doesn’t have a limit.) there’s a bit of a wait, although I found college ILL to be much faster than public if you can go that route.

    As for the books, I found art every day skippable, and I loved looking through the gallery in Freehand but found instructions minimal. It’s like having a paperback version of the Doodler’s Anonymous website. another resource might be online libraries. :-)

    • iHanna says:

      Thanks Jill, for your suggestion and advice.
      I agree that libraries are wonderful places, but since I live in Sweden I’m pretty sure non of these books are available here. I can’t even pop in to a Barns & Noble to browse through them. So that’s why I have to rely on Amazon previews, the internet and recommendations… and keep craving to have a look inside all of these! :-)

  4. Marit says:

    Thanks for this post and THANKS to the people above who left comments… I was drawn to the ‘Freehand’ book but now that I’ve read Jill’s comment, I won’t buy it. My budget is limited and I bought some disappointments in the past so I’m always interested in (good, honest) reviews. I have a bundh of ‘classic’ art books (you know, books about artists from Dali to Schiele to Magritte and books about art-styles like surrealism, abstract, art nouveau etcetera…) There’s a lot of inspiration in those books too and it’s been a while since I flipped through one of those… I might take one or two out this afternoon. Well, that’s an idea, thanks to your blogpost leading me to this! Have a great weekend Hanna!

    • iHanna says:

      The covers are so beautiful and alluring, and we who got to rely on just browsing these on the internet before buying, have a hard time making up our minds, right? I don’t think books that are just for looking is necessarily a bad thing, I love the gallery kind of sketchbook books when I know what I’m getting.

      Hope you find inspiration with Dali and the boys, Marit. Take care and keep chronicling!

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