I am very much enjoying my Christmas reading pile. This time of year is the best. The mellow week between Christmas day and New Year. Time to slow down, reflect, read, think, eat nice things and be with the family. This stack of books is a pile of pure inspiration. Just opening any of them, anywhere gets the creative juices flowing...actually just having the pile sitting there is enough! :)
I'll start from the bottom up. Botany for the Artist by Sarah Simblett has pages full of beautiful drawings and photographs and tips on drawing plants.
I might just be able to tell my compound umbels apart from my dicasiums by the end of the holidays!
The New Artisans by Oliver Dupon is soooo lovely. A chunky hardback book featuring 75 designer makers from all over the world, full of stunning work. I found out about it through Cecilia Levy's blog, a paper artist I discovered this year, who is one of the featured artists. I'm so glad to own it....and makes me proud be an 'artisan' too. It's such a lovely word.
Then there's Lotta Jansdotters Open Studios Book. This features 24 artists studios from New York, Stockholm and Tokyo, and Lotta and photographer Jenny Hellengren have obviously had a whale of a time visiting these fascinating creative spaces and taking wonderful pictures. I visited loads of studios whilst doing the interviews for Illuminate this year and I loved every minute. Seeing the creative mess, the little things that inspire, the tools ready and waiting, pots of pencils, glass rods, piles of books....It's all in here. It's made me want to expand my studio though...but I guess I've been wanting to do that for ages anyway!
Then there's Taking Flight by Kelly Rae Roberts, a very pretty book about nurturing your creativity and daring to honour your creative whisperings. I am going to be taking her ecourse next month HELLO SOUL HELLO BUSINESS which is a brand new collaboration with Beth from Do What You Love and I'm really excited about it. It's a business course about looking after the soul of your business. I have been in business for quite some time now and things are really flying but I think it's really important to look after the very thing that inspired you to do it in the first place and keep things fresh! Kelly Rae and Beth sent all the participants these beautiful notebooks for Christmas which is sitting on the top of my pile ready to catch any creative musings while things are peaceful!
My friend Rachel lent me this When God was a Rabbit by Sarah Winman and I can't tell you anything about it yet because I haven't started it. All I know is that she saved it for me because she thought I'd like the cover. She was absolutely right. That blue moon is metallic and very pretty.
I've been wanting to bring birds into my work for a long time so this Bedside Book of Birds by Graeme Gibson is good inspiration.
Full of illustrations and strange tales and folklore. I just read a tale about a girl whose mother bakes her in a pie because she broke her milk jug but she comes back to see her family as a bird and kills her mother with a stone down the chimney. Nice!
Just think. This time next year somebody might have my very own book on their Christmas reading pile. How exciting is that!!! Right, time for another cup of tea and some reading. Did you get any good books for Christmas?