Best art & photography criticism books according to redditors

We found 922 Reddit comments discussing the best art & photography criticism books. We ranked the 445 resulting products by number of redditors who mentioned them. Here are the top 20.

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Top Reddit comments about Arts & Photography Criticism:

u/AkzidenzGrotesk · 52 pointsr/explainlikeimfive

There is a neurological explanation to the Mona Lisa smile that basically states that the amount of blur in the mouth tricks our peripheral vision into making the mona lisa smile more depending upon where we focus. If we look at the eyes the mouth turns upward because our peripheral vision accepts the blur around the mouth as a more solid shape that subliminally creates a stronger smile. Read more in From Mirror Neurons to the Mona Lisa or the interesting book by Margaret Livingstone- Vision and Art: The Biology of Seeing

u/dalovindj · 33 pointsr/aww

Further reading:
Why Cats Paint

Once you've grasped that material I find:

Why Paint Cats?

to be the logical follow-up.

u/godofpumpkins · 24 pointsr/IAmA

The movie is a lot less extreme than Ngor's book, which has entire chapters with prefaces telling you to skip over them if you can't deal with things even more horrific than the rest of the book. I can't recommend the book enough, though.

No questions from me, but thanks for doing the AMA. More people need to know about it.

u/darthrevan · 21 pointsr/newjersey

What's worse is that this is a trend not just for NJ on gay marriage but for the whole country on just about everything. There's a huge disconnect between what Americans actually want vs. what our government tells us we want, and that has to do with our politicians working for the wealthy donors who fund their campaigns rather than the not-so-wealthy people they were elected to represent. Christie is a perfect example of that.

u/nyxmori · 21 pointsr/learnart

IMO, the best way to start drawing is with a pad of unlined paper and mechanical pencil.

But if you want software: GIMP is free (yay), Photoshop is the well-known standard (and these videos are good), PaintToolSai feels more natural to draw with, and I just started using Mischief (which has a natural drawing feel, infinite canvas, and vector-based). My recommendation is Sai, since it's cheap, easy, and fun to use.

To learn how to draw people, start working through the Loomis books, beginning with Fun with a Pencil. A classic for learning how to 'see' like an artist is Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain. And when you start to feel frustrated with your work, turn to Art & Fear and Daring Greatly.

Let me know if you have any questions, and good luck with your art journey :)

u/NoddysShardblade · 20 pointsr/Music

Sometimes quantity leads to quality tho:

> The ceramics teacher announced on opening day that he was dividing the class into two groups. All those on the left side of the studio, he said, would be graded solely on the quantity of work they produced, all those on the right solely on its quality.

> His procedure was simple: on the final day of class he would bring in his bathroom scales and weigh the work of the "quantity" group: fifty pound of pots rated an "A", forty pounds a "B", and so on. Those being graded on "quality", however, needed to produce only one pot - albeit a perfect one - to get an "A".

> Well, came grading time and a curious fact emerged: the works of highest quality were all produced by the group being graded for quantity.

> It seems that while the "quantity" group was busily churning out piles of work - and learning from their mistakes - the "quality" group had sat theorizing about perfection, and in the end had little more to show for their efforts than grandiose theories and a pile of dead clay.

From Art & Fear

u/David_Bowies_Package · 18 pointsr/pics

Read the book "Art and Fear" ( My sculpture teacher in college made us read it and it's 122 pages of amazingly accurate descriptions of how many of us artists struggle with exactly what you described.

I had it too and eventually I started to realize that it was worth messing things up and labeling them as "version 1" so that in my mind I knew that I could make a version 2 if I wanted to. Doing it wrong is better than not even doing it at all because at least then you have mistakes to learn from.

u/robotcaptain · 17 pointsr/history

I highly recommend Survival in the Killing Fields by Haing Ngor -

u/antibread · 14 pointsr/MorbidReality

Not from this camp specifically but there is an excellent autobiography from someone who escaped alive. I read it about a decade ago and still remember how horrifying it was

First They Killed My Father

another relevant title:

The Killing Fields

Amazing how the atrocities in cambodia have gone largely unnoticed by the western world. pol pot was a supreme asshole. it was status quo to sentence people to death for things like... wearing glasses. thousands died just of starvation. cambodia is still deeply scarred by their violent past. Mass graves are still being discovered, and until fairly recently the jungles still had Khmer hideouts :(

u/shmi · 14 pointsr/photography

Honestly if you don't know what they need from asking them, a gift card to Amazon. I'd much rather have that and spend it on what I need or whatever G.A.S. tells me I need than to receive a piece of kit that I didn't choose. I don't mean to sound rude, it's just that I rather prefer researching and choosing my own gear.

If you absolutely must, though, I recommend a book.

Or a notebook for taking notes while out shooting, scouting, etc.

u/rawlingstones · 13 pointsr/comicbooks

This is just my personal suggestion as a reader, but... invest in sandwiches.

Whenever I go buy comics, I'm always so excited to start reading them as soon as I can... but I've never been in a comic book store that has places to sit. Instead, I have to go find a diner with milkshakes and give them my business instead. I've always thought that a comic book store with a small menu and a place to sit down after you've purchased your books would do way better. Customers would spend more, and people off the street would be more likely to come in.

also, I cannot recommend highly enough that you read this book. I think everybody who's into comics should, but somebody starting a business especially.

u/MrJeinu · 13 pointsr/writing

I have some experience with webcomics. I write and draw Miamaska, which has been going on for 2+years, and I'm about to start my second comic next month.

General advice for web comickers!

(or: How I learned things the hard way and eventually stumbled into a good system)

  • Always have a buffer. Always update on time. Be dependable, your readers won't invest in your story if you seem flaky.

  • Don't do video/audio or fullpage ads. New readers will close your tab out of annoyance, and those that stay will be extremely peeved when trying to read a chapter all at once.

  • Set up donation incentives. Wallpapers, progress art for the next update, bonus page when a certain amount is reached, bonus mini-comic, etc!

  • Interact with readers! Put up a comment box, do twitter and tumblr, do request drawings. It's fun, a confidence boost, and a good way to build a fan base.

    Regarding dialogue and pacing... what I tend to do is thumbnail an entire scene (3-15 pages for me) first and read through it a few times. I'll leave mini-cliffhangers at the end of each page (like a question, or a realization, or a character entering the scene). During this little review process, I'll also make sure the view for the reader doesn't violate the 180 rule too much, that it's obvious which bubble should be read next, and where the reader is going to look first.

    I don't have any experience in the print form of comics yet. So no advice there. Just make sure your comics are in print resolution as well (300+ DPI), or you'll be sorry later.

    Resource time

    I didn't have many resources starting out, but I'm gonna recommend these for you and anyone else interested:

    PaperWings Podcast -- podcast and blog on web comic-making (ongoing, good community, regular but sparse updates, good backlog). Has even more resources on its website.

    Art and Story -- podcast on print +web comic-making and the comic industry (ended, but a great backlog).

    Understanding Comics, Reinventing Comics, and Making Comics by cartoonist Scott McCloud, worth a read for any comicker. A little more geared towards print, but breaks down comic theory really nicely.

    Comics and Sequential Art, Graphic Storytelling and Visual Narrative, Expressive Anatomy for Comics and Narrative, by Will Eisner.

    Those books are pretty popular, so you can probably pick them up from the library or find them on the web somewhere.
u/shermdip · 13 pointsr/graffhelp

Such a good post! Yeah there are many styles/movements/cultures in graffiti and I know there are a lot of separate websites and books id recommend, but I cant think of anything compiled in one place.

Here are some good general knowledge links:

Style Wars - Doc that inspired a generation of writers.

History of American Graffiti - This book is a bible. Outlines history and breaks up style by city.

Other links:

Maybe ill compile a bigger list later. You wont find a good answer to your question, i suppose the style you posted would be a throw-up, cant get more specific really.

u/mambeu · 12 pointsr/linguistics

The best book, by far, is The Languages of Native North America by Marianne Mithun .

It is dense, but a book of this scope needs to be. Nevertheless I do think it is accessible to the interested layperson.

u/millionsofcats · 11 pointsr/linguistics

The Languages of Native North America is still the classic introduction to North American languages. Although more work has been done, the basics haven't changed.

Of course, you'll need something more specific for a paper topic - just listing information isn't a good approach to a paper. Also, it's not particularly productive to look for sources until you've come up with something more specific. There are a lot of sources on Native American languages out there, and what's useful to you will depend on your topic.

u/IllusiveObserver · 11 pointsr/communism

Here's a basic video you can show anyone.

Here are books:

How Europe Underdeveloped Africa

How Capitalism Underdeveloped Black America

The Open Veins of Latin America. Here it is for free.

Failed States

Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism

War is a Racket This one is from the most decorated Marines in US history.

Occupy Finance. This one is (indirectly) about dependency theory on a national scale. The people of the US have become victims of capital. They go into debt for their health, transportation, education, housing, and daily activities with credit cards. They then put their pensions at the whim of the stock market, as it is plundered by Wall Street. When capitalism can no longer expand geographically, it needs to plunder the lives of people to maintain itself. In this case, the first source of capital to exploit was the lives of the people of the US. Unlike Europe, the US populace was left defenseless in the wake of the attack because of a history of active repression of the left (like COINTELPRO).

The financialization of the US populace is discussed in this essay from the Monthly Review, Monopoly Finance Capital. Here is a book on the topic.

If I remember any more resources, I'll make sure to throw them your way.

u/ApatheticAbsurdist · 11 pointsr/photography
  1. Look at other photographers and work... study it. Figure out what works for you and what doesn't. Go to museums, galleries, and exhibitions.

  2. Spend time figuring out what kind of photography you want to make and why you want to make it.

  3. Get a notebook. Write about 1 and 2 as well as ideas of photos you want to make and what you want them to say. Having an idea in your head it one thing but our brains jump from thought A to thought G and we don't notice because the mind is very good at filling in the gaps.

  4. Keep building technique but focus on doing so by defining the problems you have and what knowledge will allow you to create the photograph you want to make.

  5. Travel. This is a bit optional and it's usefulness (and where to travel to) varies depending on what kind of photographs you want to make. But I find at the very least getting out of your comfort zone often helps the process of development. There are several photographers who offer workshops, traveling to such a workshop will give you a different geography and find instructors that you want to emulate or learn from.

  6. See if you can find a place for critique... having to put your work up, hear what others have to say, and on some level defend what you are trying to say is scary but it's important for growth. Local Photoclubs are a start, local community art classes will push with a little more pressure.

    Books: Art & Fear by David Bayles and Ted Orland, Critcizing Photographs by Terry Barrett (you can find previous additions used a lot cheaper), and On Photography by Susan Sontag.
u/Metal-Phoenix · 11 pointsr/learnart

You're not afraid of drawing. You're afraid of response combined with perfectionism. Read Art & Fear. It's a short read, most people can get it done in about a weekend.

u/[deleted] · 10 pointsr/Art

Never be afraid to go further into a piece, or wipe away large sections out of fear of losing what you have (which is great btw). You'll learn so much more that way and it will show in your work. As someone who moved from digital art to painting I totally understand how jarring it can be to make the switch to something so much less forgiving. I'd recommend this book to any artist as it addresses many problems artists come across as artists:

Apologies for jumping down your throat over a small comment, I just think that's a great book for any artist. Also another great resource for oil painters:

u/McBackstabber · 10 pointsr/Games

I recomend reading this aswell, after playing it: Killing is Harmless: A Critical Reading of Spec Ops: The Line

u/WanderinHobo · 8 pointsr/politics

My only in-depth exposure to Russia comes from this book and I can see a lot of similarities. Russian intellectuals enjoyed thinking of Russia as a Eurasian cultural force even when it wasn't. They REALLY wanted it to be and apparently still do.

u/SkysOutThighsOut · 8 pointsr/learnart

You should check out the book 'Art & Fear' by David Bayles and Ted Orland.

From my own perspective I have a pretty similar background. I picked up drawing fairly easily in grade school and kind of lost touch with it and never developed a real solid foundation to my art skills. I'm going back now and starting entirely from square one. It's hard to have that image of your past self's skills get kind of shattered, but once I realized I needed to put in a lot of ground work to get good I started really enjoying everything I was learning.

I still get the apprehension of spending time on a drawing that I might not like in the end but I realize every drawing I make I get a step closer, even if only a tiny one, towards being better able to do what I'm trying to. Try not to draw for the end result. Try to draw because it's something that you enjoy. If you tell yourself you're not going to enjoy it and it's going to be bad, well then you're not going to enjoy it and it's going to be bad! Stop worrying about how good your work should be and just put pencil to paper and learn because you want to.

Hope you find the path you're looking for!

u/bandwidthcrisis · 8 pointsr/interestingasfuck

'Why Paint Cats?'
The companion book to 'Why Cats Paint'

u/bradtgrace · 8 pointsr/Games
u/SibilantFricative · 7 pointsr/languagelearning

Not sure if this is what you're looking for, but Marianne Mithun's The Languages of Native North America is perhaps a good place to start and definitely an amazing source of information.

u/TimofeyPnin · 7 pointsr/AskHistorians

An excellent source on disentangling martial arts legends and actual history is Meir Shahar's The Shaolin Monastery: History, Religion, and the Chinese Martial arts.

In it, he discusses the development of the Shaolin temple's unique styles of staff play and empty-hand boxing, and argues that while we have references to Shaolin monks participating in combat as early as the end of the Sui dynasty (581-618CE), it isn't until the Ming (1368-1644) that there are attestations of a style of practice specific to Shaolin.

He also spends a significant amount of time on the historical inspiration for legendary masters, with sections on Cheng Zongyou's staff method, Li Zhishen (the "tattooed monk"), Huimeng, and others.

With regards to your "wandering warrior" question, there was a long tradition of staying to the "rivers and lakes," and yes, there were itinerant martial artists who gave rise to legends. One of the most famous Chinese novels, The Water Margin treats this subject.

I can't recommend the Meir Shahar book enough, though.

u/Cawifre · 7 pointsr/WTF

No, it is "Why Paint Cats." It is literally about painting cats. There is another book, "Why Cats Paint." It is about why cats will paint pictures and how they paint things upside-down. "Dancing With Cats" is by Burton Silver and Heather Busch, as are the other two books. I have read (more or less) all three books. The experience of reading them is rather surreal. Realizing that someone paid several thousand dollars to have Charlie Chaplin painted on their cat's ass, using the asshole as a bowtie, is also a bit surreal.

EDIT: Added links. Expanded info.

u/lilgreenrosetta · 6 pointsr/photography

> My theory is that it takes someone with a MFA or a MFA candidate to find Eggleston's work as something that's worth hanging on a museum wall. If you've taken any MA classes that involve the history of modern art, Eggleston comes up. And out comes the torrent of words saying why this crap photo of a red ceiling with some white wires isn't as crap as it looks at first glance.

> And they're wrong. It's as simple as that.

Yours is a view that I have heard expressed many times before. Art and the workings of the art world are not things that are readily understood by a layman. And failing to understand it, some people tend to resort to calling the whole thing a conspiracy or a circle jerk; saying it is all "the emperor's new clothes" exactly like you do.

You are basically saying that the people who know a lot about art and have studied it formally for years are wrong, and you are right because you know less about it. Because you haven't been contaminated by the conspiracy of consensus.

I'm afraid it is not as simple as you put it, and your conspiracy theory is for the most part untrue. You just lack the understanding and the frame of reference to appreciate what is really going on. I'm not calling you stupid or anything like that, you just lack a few pieces of the puzzle that you need to put everything together. I have written an article on PetaPixel a while ago that might give you some of the information you're missing.

For a better understanding of modern art and the art world in general, you could also try reading The Shock of the New by Robert Hughes. I'm afraid this book is also a standard textbook in art colleges and universities, so if you distrust that world in general you might want to stay away from increasing your knowledge about art at all.

> Aesthetics isn't something that only a trained few can properly interpret.

See there's the first part of your problem. It's not about aesthetics. Aesthetics is not what makes art good or valuable. It is not about who can make the most beautiful painting or photograph. Aesthetics are important, but it is secondary to the meaning of a work and to the place it represents in the canon of art. Once you learn that, things become a lot clearer.

> Sometimes a photo of a red ceiling really isn't anything more than that, or indicative of a higher than normal amount of quality in a photo.

And there's the second part of your problem. You are deconstructing Eggleston's work in a way that blinds you to the bigger picture. If you take the picture of the red ceiling out of context, and place it on flickr between thousands of similar still life photographs, it does indeed become an unremarkable picture. But that's like taking a few words from the third page of the second act of a Shakespeare play and saying they are unremarkable words. Or taking the Cmaj7 and F chords from 'Imagine' and saying they are unremarkable, simple chords that anyone can play. Of course they are, but that doesn't mean 'Imagine' isn't a very good and very important song in the canon of music.

Art does not exist in a vacuum. You have to look at the bigger picture. Eggleston tells us a story and shows us a new way of looking at the world. His photographs are the words he uses to tell that story, and you have to understand what the words mean to appreciate the story he is telling. It is not about pretty pictures.

> At the end of the day, it's just a photo of two drunk people in a bed.

Here too, I think you are looking at it the wrong way. At the end of the day pretty much any photograph is "just a picture of X". The photograph "V-J Day in Times Square" by Alfred Eisenstaedt is just a picture of two people kissing. "Dimanche sur les bords de la Marne" by Henri-Cartier Bresson is just a picture of some people having lunch.

I think Teller's portrait of Eggleston and Rampling is a very exciting picture. It may not be a world class work of art, but as far as fashion/advertising work goes I think it is pretty fantastic. I couldn't care less about the fact that he didn't use any fancy lighting techniques or clever composition. It is not about that. In fact, the direct flash technique and jumbled composition only add to the picture.

I love the picture because it's intimate. It's not a photograph anyone could have just come up and taken. You can't just sit two people down and have them pose like this, a moment like this has to happen. Only very few photographers can do this, and nobody can do it like Teller can. I love that. It's like getting a peek into his world. It hints at a bigger story, an exciting story with fabulous people late at night in a fancy Paris hotel, perhaps drunk, in their own world. This is a world almost everybody secretly wants to be a part of, and this picture makes you feel like you are part of it. As an advertising picture for Marc Jacobs it is bloody fantastic.

Teller's consistent ability to pull this off is what has made him one of the most celebrated and sought-after photographers of the last two decades. Amateur photographers consistently fail to understand what makes his work so brilliant because they're searching for the wrong things in his work. Luckily for mr. Teller, the people who commission fashion photography at the world's leading brands an magazines don't need his work explained to them by anyone.

u/chuan_l · 6 pointsr/oculus

A man, a plan, a caret, a ban, a myriad, a sum, a lac, a liar, a hoop, a pint, a catalpa, a gas, an oil, a bird, a yell, a vat, a caw, a pax, a wag, a tax, a nay, a ram, a cap, a yam, a gay, a tsar, a wall, a car, a luger, a ward, a bin, a woman, a vassal, a wolf, a tuna, a nit, a pall, a fret, a watt, a bay, a daub, a tan, a cab, a datum, a gall, a hat, a fag, a zap, a say, a jaw, a lay, a wet, a gallop, a tug, a trot, a trap, a tram, a torr, a caper, a top, a tonk, a toll, a ball, a fair, a sax, a minim, a tenor, a bass, a passer, a capital, a rut, an amen, a ted, a cabal, a tang, a sun, an ass, a maw, a sag, a jam, a dam, a sub, a salt, an axon, a sail, an ad, a wadi, a radian, a room, a rood, a rip, a tad, a pariah, a revel, a reel, a reed, a pool, a plug, a pin, a peek, a parabola, a dog, a pat, a cud, a nu, a fan, a pal, a rum, a nod, an eta, a lag, an eel, a batik, a mug, a mot, a nap, a maxim, a mood, a leek, a grub, a gob, a gel, a drab, a citadel, a total, a cedar, a tap, a gag, a rat, a manor, a bar, a gal, a cola, a pap, a yaw, a tab, a raj, a gab, a nag, a pagan, a bag, a jar, a bat, a way, a papa, a local, a gar, a baron, a mat, a rag, a gap, a tar, a decal, a tot, a led, a tic, a bard, a leg, a bog, a burg, a keel, a doom, a mix, a map, an atom, a gum, a kit, a baleen, a gala, a ten, a don, a mural, a pan, a faun, a ducat, a pagoda, a lob, a rap, a keep, a nip, a gulp, a loop, a deer, a leer, a lever, a hair, a pad, a tapir, a door, a moor, an aid, a raid, a wad, an alias, an ox, an atlas, a bus, a madam, a jag, a saw, a mass, an anus, a gnat, a lab, a cadet, an em, a natural, a tip, a caress, a pass, a baronet, a minimax, a sari, a fall, a ballot, a knot, a pot, a rep, a carrot, a mart, a part, a tort, a gut, a poll, a gateway, a law, a jay, a sap, a zag, a fat, a hall, a gamut, a dab, a can, a tabu, a day, a batt, a waterfall, a patina, a nut, a flow, a lass, a van, a mow, a nib, a draw, a regular, a call, a war, a stay, a gam, a yap, a cam, a ray, an ax, a tag, a wax, a paw, a cat, a valley, a drib, a lion, a saga, a plat, a catnip, a pooh, a rail, a calamus, a dairyman, a bater, a canal - Panama!
— Dan Hoey [ 1984 ]

u/PaXMeTOB · 6 pointsr/askphilosophy

You might appreciate Umberto Eco's book On Ugliness, and how it was historically associated with moral impurity/degeneracy. People who were visibly afflicted with an illness were often perceived as suffering from divine judgement for their wrong acts.

u/pier25 · 6 pointsr/edmproduction

The eternal quantity vs quality debate. Here's a quote from Art & Fear:

> The ceramics teacher announced on opening day that he was dividing the class into two groups. All those on the left side of the studio, he said, would be graded solely on the quantity of work they produced, all those on the right solely on its quality.

> His procedure was simple: on the final day of class he would bring in his bathroom scales and weigh the work of the “quantity” group: fifty pound of pots rated an “A”, forty pounds a “B”, and so on. Those being graded on “quality”, however, needed to produce only one pot—albeit a perfect one—to get an “A”.

> Well, came grading time and a curious fact emerged: the works of highest quality were all produced by the group being graded for quantity. It seems that while the “quantity” group was busily churning out piles of work—and learning from their mistakes—the “quality” group had sat theorizing about perfection, and in the end had little more to show for their efforts than grandiose theories and a pile of dead clay.

u/Kr1ss · 5 pointsr/graphic_design

Ways of seeing by John Berger. A great book on visual communication.

How to be a graphic designer without losing your soul by Adrian Shaughnessy. The title says it all.

The Elements of Typographic Style by Robert Bringhurst. My go-to book on typography - covers everything related to typography with beautiful detail.

u/blahblargle · 5 pointsr/russia

Two things: For history and high culture, you want "Natasha's Dance"

For a detailed look at basically every aspect of Russian everyday life and worldview (everything from historic army uniforms to the culture of medicine to folk tales and superstitions), "The Russian's World" is where it's at. The 2nd or 3rd edition will be much cheaper, but the information I got from my older edition (published 2000) about basic daily life was pretty outdated when I was in Russia (2012).

u/wi_2 · 5 pointsr/TechnoProduction

Ha, I knew it.

So, yes, we all face this issue in the creative space.
And honestly, it is a curse, it is probably the most damning thing that happens to our ability to work.
This book is all about that
Interesting read if you want to read, but my main point with sharing the book is to let you know how common this issue is.

Now, the solution is, you suck, you need to accept that you suck, and you need to stop caring that you suck.
What you need to focus on is your love for music, your love for sound. That feeling you get when you press the keys using a synth with a cool sound or listen to a cool beat.

The problem really starts there, because while you produce, your love for music will so easily get trumped by the music that you love.
Do not do this, do not compare yourself to others like that.
They are different humans, with different experiences, and different lives, different brains. You will never be like them.

You are your own person, your own brain, your own experiences, and this is where your beauty lies.
People often tell you, when you want to pick up a girl just be yourself.
Well it's the same is with making music, just be yourself.
If what comes out of your head is beep boop beep, then make beep boop beep, do not feel shame for your simplicity, focus on the love of the sounds you choose, focus on the ideas that pop into your head and express them, no matter how primitive they sound to you.
Another link about this exact topic, little more esoteric.

Trust in your own ability to get better, do not compare yourself to others all the time, again, they are different people.
Don't buy a shirt because it looks cool on some dude, buy a shirt because you like it and it fits you.

In short, you are trying to climb a ladder starting at the top.
It's a very common feeling for all, we all have to go through this, the solution is to accept your suckage and try to improve yourself not by trying to be someone else, but to be a better you.
If that pulls you away from the music you love, let it pull you away.
If you find yourself making classical music or pop songs or punk or whatever instead of techno, let it pull you away. You need to set yourself free creatively, you need to relearn the joy of play.
To box yourself in with a genre or worse, music that you like, is extremely damning, especially if you are not well conscious of your own creativity etc.

Grab your instruments, play around, have fun. Drop some notes, drop some beats, just make music and play. If something does not feel right to you, tweak it until it does, but stay within yourself, trust your own gut, your own inspiration, stop the automatic response to start looking at other work to try and find their solutions.
Do look at other people work to study as you please, you can learn a lot, just do not do that while you are producing your own song.
Don't do so when you are trying to put yourself into your creative/expressive mindset.

Anyways, hope it helps, feel free to hit me up if you feel crappy about stuff. I have suffered this exact issue for years and years, it took me like 10 years to finally start to grasp the issue.

more ranting

In more practical terms, I suggest you try to find your creative playful mindset.
If you are bored with a track and not inspired, fuck it, let it die, trying to finish so you can share it, will quickly kill your creative mindset, you need solid awareness of this conscious switch to be able to deal with it.
Do not try and make music like others, make the music that you hear in your head, even if it's just beep boop beep human music, hmm, I like it. You will get better and more expressive as you dig deeper, trust that.
Do not make drum patterns the way they are supposed to be, make drum patterns that sound good to you.
Use your hands and feet as much as you can, record things live using your midi keyboard, tweak after, it does not matter if you can't play piano, the point is to express yourself, using your body to do so is a much shorter road for your mind to fall into that mindset.
If you dance, then dance, do you know this moment while you are dancing and forgot to care you look stupid? That moment when you are just having pure fun and are feeling one with the music, flowing like some ninja or whatever? This is it, this is what you want to dig for.
Dance on your midi keyboard and record it, and tweak it after, with your dance recent midi keyboard dance still fresh in your memory.
Music is language, try and think of it like that.
Listen to you beep boop beep, reply to it, maybe another boop? beep boop beep boop boop boop BAM! Whatever, have fun with it.

For me techno sounds like "yeh, yeh, let go, woohoo,, watch out, wait, wait watch out,, here we GO! yeh yeh yeh" It's primitive, stupidly retarded in a way, and gloriously fantastic.

Classical music is often like "can you hear it? can you? omg it is beatiful... no... no wait!.. it is happening again.. my love where have you gone?.. now I am here alone again.. waiting for you .. alone alone.. forever alone.. .. alone... NO NO NO I WILL NOT ACCEPT THIS.. FIGHT.. I will FIGHT!!!.. glory glory!! fight for glory!!"
It is more an emotional rollercoaster ride, which people find is more complex I suppose, fair enough.

This book I also recommend, it's about painting, but the same ideas apply to pretty much any creative endevour

u/dasazz · 5 pointsr/photography

I think this is the most general standard book not only for color but for everything regarding visual input: Art and Visual Perception: A Psychology of the Creative Eye by Rudolf Arnheim. I don't have a fine art degree either so correct me if i'm wrong.

u/taosecurity · 5 pointsr/martialarts

If you would like to learn the reality of the Shaolin temple, consider reading

The Shaolin Monastery: History, Religion, and the Chinese Martial Arts

u/BasicDesignAdvice · 5 pointsr/ArtCrit

READ THIS BOOK RIGHT NOW. i learned the lessons here the hard way. i saw it in another thread recently and man, i would have saved myself a lot of suffering if i had known about it.

and stop trying to be someone else. you do have something to say, you're just afraid to say it.

u/NaiDriftlin · 5 pointsr/nanowrimo

Disregard paranoia. Acquire Art and Fear. Overcome adversity.

If you can find a copy at a library, or get someone to let you borrow it via Kindle, you should read it. It helps artists(which writers are) overcome such fears and conundrums of questioning originality.

Basic fear aside, this is a fairly rare situation, especially in the internet age.

If you need some assurance that you aren't doing it, have someone proof read your work, preferably someone as well read, if not more read than you.

u/0101110010110 · 5 pointsr/cscareerquestions

There are two resources I would recommend you take a look at.

The first is Learning How To Learn by Barbara Oakley. It is a tremendous resource for learning about how your brain works, and it has an entire section devoted to procrastination.

The second is the book Art and Fear. It's focused mainly for artists, but there are many parallels with creating in general. Given your fear of failure, I think it would be a great resource.

u/TheGreatPiata · 5 pointsr/ArtFundamentals

I'm going to piggy back off this post and recommend Art & Fear by by David Bayles and Ted Orland:

It's a short read so it shouldn't take too much time from drawing.

The two things that really stuck out for me were:

  • Students graded by the number of pieces produced created more and better art than students graded on one piece at the end of the class
  • What others think of your art is irrelevant. You are going to make stuff anyways so you might as well ignore everything else and focus on making art

    The other thing that really influenced me was Strip Search from Penny Arcade:

    Mike's advice to almost everyone eliminated was to "draw every day". That really stuck with me and I've done it ever since. Making drawing a part of my daily routine is the only way I've managed to grow as an artist.
u/dinoxaurz · 5 pointsr/bookporn

I think this is a pretty common book most places, at least in the Pacific Northwest. I got it as a gift as a child and see it everywhere.

Edit: That, and "Why Cats Paint", and "Why Paint Cats". I recommend them all.

u/shagieIsMe · 5 pointsr/aww

While its a cat thing, there's a book - Why Paint Cats (note the companion book Why Cats Paint).

There are a number of pictures out there on the web if you search for it. At times, I wonder how many of those owners ere murdered in their sleep.

u/elementary_vision · 5 pointsr/infp

Obligatory Ira Glass quote if you haven't seen it

I'm gonna keep this as short as possible, but I know your struggle. In all likelihood if you're like me you have this spark or inspiration inside of you. But it's like being an infant that can't talk. It's frustrating because you want to create this vision of a beautiful piece of work that's in your head, but you feel like you don't how to proceed. You have to keep that spark alive, but also realize you may not have the skills or experience to actualize it. That's completely ok.

My biggest piece of advice is to let go of perfection. Look to your favorite artists for inspiration, but try to not to compare. What you hear from them is hours and hours of experience and it's unfair to compare yourself to that. I've been down that road, it leads to nothing but anxiety and procrastination. Instead here's what you should focus on. Just finish everything you start. No matter how shitty or imperfect. Let go of the idea of writing something good and just practice creating.

Also here's a book that you might like Also this one is pretty good too Though I'd recommend the mastering creative anxiety book first, it gives little lessons in the form of short stories and is more light hearted. Art and Fear gets a bit heavy at some points.

u/carlEdwards · 4 pointsr/booksuggestions

A little art appresciation? "Ways of Seeing" by John Berger. 20th Century art music: "The Rest is Noise" by Alex Ross.

u/GetsEclectic · 4 pointsr/Art has some good stuff, they make DVDs too. You could probably pirate them, were you a person of low moral fiber.

There are some good books out there too, which you can probably get from the local library. You might need to use interlibrary loan though, my local libraries have a poor selection of art books, but there isn't anything they haven't been able to find at another library.

Color in Contemporary Painting

The Art of Color

Mastering Composition

Abstraction in Art and Nature

The Art Spirit

Some people don't care about theory, but personally I find it inspiring. Art in Theory 1900-1990 is a good collection of writings by artists, critics, and the like. If you're weak on art history you might want to study some of that first, History of Modern Art is pretty good.

u/bluecalx2 · 4 pointsr/LibertarianSocialism

The first one I read was Media Control: The Spectacular Achievements of Propaganda, which was a great introduction. It's short and very easy to get into. You can read it in an afternoon. It's actually from a speech he gave, so you can probably find the audio online for free and listen to it instead if you prefer.

But his best book, in my opinion, is Understanding Power. It's more of a collection of essays, speeches and interviews, but it really shaped my understanding of the world better than any other book I have read. I can't recommend this book enough.

If you're more interested in libertarian socialism, in addition to Understanding Power, read Chomsky on Anarchism. He presents the theories in very clear language, instead of being overly theoretical.

If you're more interested in his writings on US foreign policy, also read either Failed States or Hegemony or Survival.


u/kwamzilla · 4 pointsr/kungfu

Some books:

u/Barboski · 4 pointsr/nba

This pretty much covers it.

(Actually a really great coffee table book.)

u/CharlesWiltgen · 4 pointsr/laravel

Yes. FWIW, it's a reasonably common thing for creators to feel. A couple book recommendations:

u/xmachina · 3 pointsr/greece

Ναι αυτό εννοώ. Κρίμα.

Καταλαβαίνω ότι το comic είναι πολύ δύσκολη υπόθεση. Το πόσο δύσκολο είναι το κατάλαβα διαβάζοντας τη σειρά βιβλίων του Scott McCloud "Understanding comics: The invisible Art", "Reinventing comics" και "Making Comics". Δεν είχα ιδέα από comics ως μέσο και μου κίνησε την περιέργεια μία ομιλία (keynote address) του McCloud σε ένα συνέδριο που είχα παρευρεθεί. Awesome stuff!

u/mushpuppy · 3 pointsr/writing

Doesn't seem like you're as interested in getting help with writing as you are in getting help with illustration.

Still, regarding writing, I strongly recommend reading Scott McCloud's two seminal books on comic books: Understanding Comics and Reinventing Comics.

I learned as much about comics from reading those two books as I learned about film from reading Story, by Robert McKee.

I.e., my appreciation and understanding of both media forms increased exponentially.

u/mz27 · 3 pointsr/Design

The documentary "bomb it" goes into a lot of the early history, and the book the history of american graffiti are great places to start. Information is scattered all over the place, as you might imagine from an artform which is temporary and whose culture is handed down through word of mouth from one generation to the next.

u/angelenoatheart · 3 pointsr/museum

I encountered it in Ways of Seeing, but I don't think they originated it.

u/zstone · 3 pointsr/photography

Seconded, with the addition of John Berger - Ways of Seeing

The BBC show 'Ways of Seeing' which the book is based on is available streaming on Netflix and is worth the watch in my opinion.

u/sport1987 · 3 pointsr/ArtHistory

Ways of Seeing

It was based on a TV series from BBC

u/pietpelle · 3 pointsr/photography

Since you don't say whether you want to learn how to operate a camera or the field of photography in general and what interests you in photography in particular this is quite a stab in the dark but here are a few suggestions of books I keep coming back to or hold important.

This assumes that you have a basic understanding on how to operate a camera. If you don't, read your camera manual or something like Adam's The Camera and .

Technical advice

  • Light, Science and Magic - the best theoretical book there is about understanding how light behaves and how to work with it. Its exercises are quite focused on artificial light and if you are just getting into photography it won't be easy but at the end of it you will know how to work with light artificial or natural and get to your vision or have a better understanding of other people's work.
  • Studio Anywhere - this is not the most technical book per se (far from it) and the images are not to my taste but what it lacks in pure knowledge it makes up for with motivating you to take images no matter how little you own. This was a fun (if a bit too quick) read and is a good book to jump into when Light, Science and Magic feels like you are a profoto pack and 3 Chimera modifiers short of what you are trying to do.

    Theory/Motivational advice

  • The Ongoing Moment by Geoff Dyer - Great book about the history of American photography, its origin and how it flourished. This book is really easy to read and a very good way to start gaining some theoretical knowledge about the wide field of photography.
  • Understanding a photograph by John Berger - Great collection of essays from one of the greatest art theorist and a fervent believer in photography as a medium pieced together by Geoff Dyer. Super engaging reads on a variety of topics and styles.
  • Ways of Seeing by John Berger - An absolute must read in my opinion, not focused solely on photography but in the arts in general. The BBC series is also a great watch and its content is still as relevant today as it was when it came out.
  • On Photography by Susan Sontag - A very important book, if not the most important when it comes to identifying the role of photography in our world. Personally found it quite hard to read but when it finally hit home it was with great impact.
u/beamish14 · 3 pointsr/books

Pretty fabulous list! I would've tossed in John Berger's Ways of Seeing and some Jung, though. Penrose's Road to Reality has been in my "to read" queue for ages.

u/minnabruna · 3 pointsr/russia

I recommend visiting the Kremlin (churches, square, museum in the armory and diamond fund) and St. Basil's (and even the smaller Russian history museum and the archeological one outside the main gate) in Red Square before the cemetery. The cemetery is interesting but if you are short on time you can see and learn a whole more in the same time period staying in the Red Square area. Just check hours and tickets information on the Kremlin museum website first. If you still have time after that cross the bridge behind St Basils to the Zamosvoreche area, home of the excellent Treyakov Museum (Russian art arranged by historical/cultural lesson eras).

You are right to learn Cyrillic, especially if you plan of checking out the metro - there will not be many English speakers out on the streets and knowing that much will be really helpful. If you plan to venture outside of tourist areas on your own it may be helpful to make cards in advance with common phrases and things that you may want to buy.

I noticed that your selected reading was mostly language-focused. If you want to know more about the history/culture I recommend Natasha's Dance. This is only assuming that your flight isn't tomorrow, however - Natasha's Dance is a long book!

If you are looking for events, Element Magazine has some listed in English, as do the Moscow News, Moscow Times and the upcoming Golden Mask

Have Fun!

u/kinderdemon · 3 pointsr/ArtHistory

Well if you like the Peredvizhniki: check out Vereschagin: he was a war artist, embedded with the troops and developing a really intense realistic form (I think of his as another Russian Courbet): e.g. Apatheosis, Road of the War Prisoners

Russia has had a long and turbulent artistic history in the last two or three centuries, and there is no one essence or spirit of an era or area. However, if you have specific questions I can answer them: Russian 20th century art is my area of expertise is (with an emphasis on the 1970s) I can probably recommend some good books ;)

What are you interested in specifically? Late 19th century? The avant-garde? Stalinism and socialist realism? Nonconformism and the underground? Natasha's Dance is a good cultural history of the 19th century and early 20th while Everything was Forever until it was no More is good on the post-war culture.

u/Fenzir · 3 pointsr/infj

I burned my guru hat a long time ago. :) There are many more deserving people around here. I'm just loud af.

I do really hope you find something useful in there. Here's one more that might directly appeal to you.

Edit: Okay, I've broken one of my own rules of acknowledgment. Thanks for the prasie. :)

u/Nuinui · 3 pointsr/learnart

I believe you should look at Art & Fear or The Art Spirit

u/funisher · 3 pointsr/ArtistLounge

I have more advice but I am currently at work. For the time being I would like to once again recommend Robert Henri's "The Art Spirit". It's not specifically aimed toward any type of art but it's an awesome source of inspiration for the budding artist! I will jump back in with specific drawing advice this evening. :)

u/squidboots · 3 pointsr/AskReddit

My dad is the one who put the idea in my head and after some research I'm inclined to agree with them. He no longer works in the field but up until recently he did and also taught geophysics.

I think you may have misinterpreted what I said. I know that scientists agree that global warming is manmade. And I absolutely agree with them. What I'm saying is that human activities have exacerbated a process that the earth goes through periodically (I don't think we'd be having "global warming" right now if it weren't for human activity) and is causing it to happen very rapidly. That certainly isn't a dismissal of what is happening nor what the implications are. There's even a body of research that supports these ideas. I just disagree with the idea that people get in their heads that the earth is unchanging and let it color their view of what actually is happening right now. I would suggest picking up the book The Little Ice Age by Brian Fagan if you would like to read a nonfiction novel on the subject of climate change in human history and its human and geothermal's a great read.

u/scientificarchama · 3 pointsr/AskAnthropology

I am most familiar with the climate changes of the Medieval Warm Period (ca. AD 800-1200) and the Little Ice Age (ca. 1200-1900). Some great pop science books about those two have been written by Brian Fagan: 1 and 2. For modern climate change, if you are really wanting to get in depth, you can check out the latest IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) report. I realise that present-day climate change is an incredibly controversial topic among some sectors, so keep in mind that there are lots of competing viewpoints out there.

Please let me know if you want something less pop science-y about those two past events -- I've got some great textbook and article recommendations too for the specialist.

u/kanweniyu · 3 pointsr/linguistics

I am printing the hell out of this to put on my wall.

For people that are interested in Native linguistics, I would definitely recommend acquiring: Mithun's The Languages of Native North America

u/teplin · 3 pointsr/drawing

Go to as many museums as you can and absorb. Be a sponge. It's also helpful to pick up some basic art history books to help propel you into learning about stuff which will open the door of what you didn't realize was even possible to like. Get a little education. Maybe start with The Shock of the New by Robert Hughes - see if that excites you (it sure got me going when I was 18). And draw and draw and draw. Fill sketchbooks. Copy other art you admire.

u/happybadger · 3 pointsr/creepy

Aye! There's a really fantastic book that touches on the shift for a chapter, The Shock of the New by Robert Hughes. That point in art history is one of the most radical and blindingly fascinating shifts we've ever undergone culturally.

edit: Actually, $20-40 on Amazon is pretty steep. If you'd like, I could type out the relevant pages.

u/marmalade · 3 pointsr/books

Survival In The Killing Fields by Haing S Ngor.

My War Gone By, I Miss It So by Anthony Loyd.

If you're after genuinely frightening and affecting, how about some real-life horror? These books had me terrified for the protagonists' safety at various points. They are much more horrifying than most 'horror' books I've read, and you kinda learn about histories that you wouldn't ordinarily encounter by stealth. The first is a man watching his life and family get ripped apart by the Khmer Rouge; the second is a wannabe photojournalist travelling through Bosnia and surrounds in the early 90s to escape his heroin addiction.

u/pm_me_ur_big_balls · 3 pointsr/starterpacks

> but war can actually build national identity

Jesus christ... You have no sense of reason. You'll dismiss literally any hardship to fit your existing world view.

I'd really love to hear you tell a Cambodian that their civil war actually helped them be a better country. Read a fucking book you retard

u/elpriceisright · 3 pointsr/ArtHistory

It's not too tough to keep going.

Architectural programs like Rhino have made it so we can digitally reconstruct architectural spaces.

The internet itself has totally changed how research is done (as it has for all fields), so CAA reviews is now easily available for the latest art history books to be peer reviewed. Or ArtPrice catalogs what has been sold at auction, for what price.

Scientific analysis of, say, paint, materials in general, have revolutionized methods of identifying and proving the provenance of given paintings. And that is really only the beginning. Check this out:

3-D Printing has already been mentioned.

Margaret Livingston (Harvard, Cog Sci) just wrote a whole book in which she applies the latest scientific explanations of vision to art history, explaining a number of ways in which the Impressionists / Van Gogh / The Mona Lisa achieve affects that play between different levels of vision.

This is all off the top of my head -- this question needs to be more specific!

u/twocats · 3 pointsr/santashelpers

Vision and Art: The Biology of Seeing seems right up her alley and I'd also recommend The Artist's Eyes: Vision and the History of Art.

You can try Durer, a coffee table book from Taschen, these guys make absolutely gorgeous books, I have a Dali book from them, but I'd go with one of the above books coupled with a card with the prints Sparklebunny suggested and you're golden :)

u/desertmystic · 3 pointsr/history

In 2008 Meir Shahar, from Tel Aviv University published a fantastic book on exactly what you're interested in.

There's also Peter Lorge's book (history prof at Vanderbilt), Chinese Martial Arts, an overall history of the subject to which Shaolin is pertinent but tangential.

Most everything written on the subject is hagiography, but the above two are works of history, if that's what you're looking for.

u/WinterInJuly · 3 pointsr/books

I had actually just finished 'The Bell Jar'. It was very interesting and sad. I have conflicted opinions on it.

Just started reading On Ugliness, the complementary book to History Of Beauty. Since I have an attraction to grotesque, I love it. Usually there isn't an actual discussion on ugliness, only as contraditction to beauty, so it's incredibly interesting, imo.

Edit: Oh! also fanfiction.

u/sunamumaya · 3 pointsr/WeAreTheMusicMakers

Yep, here we are: this is the entrance to the rabbit hole. I really don't want to start the never ending debate about what is ugly and what is beautiful, and how my ugly is your beautiful and vice-versa.

I'll just attempt to explain what I said by asserting that I find this beautiful (just as its curator intended, I would suspect).

What I mean by "ugly" is that which is valueless on any (or almost any) sane scale (of course, I have just invited you to call me out on the "sane" bit). That which is no way admirable, if you will.That which is forced, uninspired and uninspiring, lukewarm. That which screams "I should not have been created". That which does not belong.

I'm sure I've failed in my explaining, but it's OK. I've gotten used to it.

u/rafeem · 3 pointsr/OkCupid

I dont understand the questions but i recommend this to the sub.

u/lookinathesun · 3 pointsr/pics

Great description. I see someone who has seen successes and just as many failures, but still continues on with his life's work. He looks like someone who has seen enough to know when to keep his mouth shut and just observe. This image makes me think and art that does this is worth something.

Struggling with the worth of your art is the price we pay for making art. A good book on the subject (required reading from an old art teacher):

u/HandshakeOfCO · 3 pointsr/ArtistLounge

I remember feeling a lot of these same feelings. There’s a book called Art and Fear... it really helped me. Here’s a link:

u/Altilana · 3 pointsr/infp

Read Art & Fear, a really clear short book that addresses all of the issues in making art, fear of failure, fear of success, inadequacy. You'll struggle with fear for the rest of your life, and it's a great book to come back to over and over.
Here is the Google Doc version, though I still suggest the actual book is better to have on hand.

u/Sunergy · 3 pointsr/learnart

If this kind of thing is helpful to you I highly recommend Art & Fear by David Bayles and Ted Orland. It's a fairly short book, but it deal with the fears that surround getting down and doing the art in a very direct and personal fashion. It really helped me a lot when it came to getting going again.

u/Tranquilien · 3 pointsr/MEOW_IRL

a lot of people don't actually know how old this picture is, it's from a book that's about ~20 years old, aka this poor kitty IS probably a skelekitty BY NOW:

also contrary to the OP's username, it is not photoshopped.

u/King-Oblivious · 3 pointsr/malelivingspace

Why Paint Cats.

My brother gets lots of random books, so our coffee table has an interesting mix of things to look at...

u/ashsimmonds · 3 pointsr/ofcoursethatsathing

I put a link and more pics in my blog. Direct amazon link:

u/michael_dorfman · 3 pointsr/Buddhism


For those interested in the inter-connections between early Greek and Indian philosophy, I can highly recommend Thomas McEvilley's The Shape of Ancient Thought

u/honestlytrying · 3 pointsr/WeAreTheMusicMakers

I read a great book called Art & Fear.

There's a section where they talk about the teacher of a pottery class. At the beginning of the semester he divides the class in two. Half of the students will be graded on the quality of their work. The other half will be graded on the quantity of their work. I think he actually graded that second group's work by weight.

The crazy thing is, the students who were judged by the sheer volume of the work they produced also happened to produce the highest quality work.

I always thought that was an enlightening story. Great book by the way; short and sweet. Here it is on Amazon.

u/IWillCastAnything · 3 pointsr/gaming
u/d1rtySi · 3 pointsr/Games

Have you read the e-book "Killing is Harmless"? It is a "critical reading" of the game that I thoroughly enjoyed. The Line, as a thinking experience around games and what they can be is just a magnificent thing. This book made it better.

Link to the book:

u/makmanalp · 2 pointsr/DepthHub

If you liked this, you might like Ways Of Seeing by Berger, a classic art criticism text:

Pretty eye opening to people like me who had never been exposed to the thought processes that go into making art and the formation of different movements in art.

u/butforevernow · 2 pointsr/AskHistorians

No problem! I have no experience with the UK industry but I can't imagine it's too different:

  • My degree was a necessity. Job/intern experience was preferred and mine definitely helped my application, but since I started at an entry level gallery job (as a curatorial assistant) it was the degree that was the most important thing.

  • There's not a huge market, honestly, in terms of simple availability - there are plenty of art galleries, sure, but there are way more people trying to get jobs in them. I'm not working in my specific field of interest, but I can't really be picky at this early stage of my career. It also depends what you want to go into: curating, conservation, acquisitions, education, exhibition design, fundraising, research, auction houses, consultation... art history as a degree opens so many more doors than people first realize, I think. Some of these fields are a lot more specialized than others.

  • Books in general: my favourite is probably the Art in Theory three-part series. For AH as an academic discipline, you really can't go past it. I also really like Berger's Ways of Seeing, which is a really important text for analyzing artworks. For an overview of the art itself, Gombrich's The Story of Art is a good bet. The Getty's Guide to Imagery series is also fascinating (and very wide-ranging).

  • Resources: subscriptions to JSTOR, ABM (Art Bibliographies Modern), ProQuest, and Grove Art / Oxford Art Online will be your best friends. If you're at uni, you should have access through your school. I'm also a huge fan of Trove (it's an Australian resource but there should be a comparable English one) which allows you to search for resources by subject/keyword and then tells you where said resources are located (both digitally and hard copy).

    Hope that helped a bit!
u/JeanJauresJr · 2 pointsr/russia
u/OutsiderInArt · 2 pointsr/learnart

Different strokes for different folks. Depending on their learning style, some love Loomis but hate Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain or say Keys to Drawing didn’t help them a bit. Truth is, most artists eventually read them all and use portions from each of them.

My personal reading focused more on the philosophy of art. I wanted to learn the traits and mentality of a successful artist and why they do what they do.

Books by Steven Pressfield:
The War of Art,
Do the Work,
Turning Pro.

I also re-read The Art Spirit by Robert Henri.

u/powderdd · 2 pointsr/museum

The Art Spirit by Robert Henri. Amazingly articulate for an artist.

Letters to a Young Poet was ineffably helpful in learning to hold loneliness/solitude as something valuable. One of the most insightful books I have read. And it is extremely short.

u/Smitty9913 · 2 pointsr/ModelUSGov

I hope this helps you out, its called the [little ice age] ( it was when temperatures changed drastically for many years. The change as similar to what is is today. This is natural you are simply denying the facts. You ignored the evidence that he showed you, open your eyes.

More evidence for you:

u/bix783 · 2 pointsr/ShitRedditSays

Thank you! I really appreciate the offer. Academics often don't have anyone to edit them for things like grammar, wording, etc. and it definitely shows. Glad I could teach you about something new! If you're interested in reading a popular science book on a similar topic, you could try reading something by Brian Fagan like this.

u/kristallisiert · 2 pointsr/graphic_design

>but when it comes to the big idea of that project and how the visual works in with the idea, I seem to get overwhelmed or lost.

Reading some of the Rudolf Arnheim's writings could be of profit to you. Be it Art and Visual Perception or Visual Thinking. Or maybe generally a bit more about the Theory of Graphic Design?

>when i try to give direction i feel as if i come up short

Maybe get in the head of some great art directors by reading their biography or books they published? The Art Directors Club could be a resource for information and inspiration too.

u/Quantius · 2 pointsr/graphic_design

Here is a seminal work for designers/artists written by a psychologist: (a caution to anyone looking to pick this up — this is not a quick/easy read).

It addresses the various elements of design through the lens of visual and cognitive psychology.

Obviously there are numerous channels for learning design tools, as far as design prompts there are sites that do that, but why not just go to upwork and look at actual client requests.

As far as getting a BA, look at local in-state schools, you should be able to go for $5k-$10k a year. People make the mistake of going to private institutions or going nuts by going out-of-state, but in-state public schools are pretty affordable.

As far as working in the field, don't count your eggs before they hatch. This is competitive field with a massive over-saturation of labor supply.

u/SomeIrishGuy · 2 pointsr/booksuggestions

The Shock of the New by Robert Hughes is a classic. He also made a TV documentary series of the same name, which you can find on YouTube.

u/Potss · 2 pointsr/conspiracy

Links? Also disprove that he is one of Israel's largest critics, because by all accounts he is. Almost every book and report he has written in the past 20 years mentions Israels horrid crimes. He goes out of his way to slap Israel every chance he gets!

Here is just a tiny sampling:

Boy your BS falls apart really fast when confronted with reality doesn't it?

Also Zionists may be ahead of the game, but not by as much as they like to think (or you are led to believe).

u/sregit · 2 pointsr/photography

Another good book is "Vision and Art: The Biology of Seeing" by Margaret Livingstone (

u/chadnik · 2 pointsr/malefashion

If you want more fun aesthetics of ugliness reading and think you'd be interested in a super visual take with a heavy focus on classical painting, check out On Ugliness by Umberto Eco

u/brettvirmalo · 2 pointsr/designthought

Along these lines, Umberto Eco's On Ugliness is fantastic.

There is also the companion History of Beauty

u/littlepinksock · 2 pointsr/badwomensanatomy

Have your read Eco's History of Beauty?

Or his On Ugliness?

u/acatnamedpeach · 2 pointsr/AskAstrologers

I know how you feel, it’s really difficult to put yourself out there. Creations are intimate expressions of the self. Erykah badus quote “Now keep in mind that I’m an artist and I’m sensitive about my shit” always reminds me that sensitivities ARE vulnerabilities. You are being vulnerable. You have to give yourself the credit where it’s due. I think the issue is fear like how you say you’re terrified- fear of rejection, fear of being misinderstood, fear of the feeling of exposure. The book I linked might help you. Your analysis of yourself is great, but also too harsh. One thing that you can change and that you do have control over with enough discipline are your thoughts. Get out of your head, as lame as that sounds. Really though, no one can do it but you. Positive thinking practices will help you, whether it’s clearing your thoughts through meditation or exercise, positive affirmations, or just really shutting your pervasive and invasive thoughts down. Use that strong mental energy you have that you’re using against yourself and put it into your work and what you love.

another thing I would add to your chart though is it having your moon in the tenth house. Something more for you to research and reflect on. When you’re in the public eye, you can get emotional, negative or positive emotions. There are ways around this. There are many artists who stay in the background and let their work speak for themselves. I know a big part of being an artist in a way is selling yourself, but really the people you need to sell yourself to are the people who are going to display your work. You can still be your low key public version of yourself in the art world and have your work shine.

u/ernster96 · 2 pointsr/ArtistLounge

there's a book that may interest you called "art and fear." i like to listen to the audio sometimes when i'm not motivated to draw.

u/b-fredette · 2 pointsr/pics

I am going to art school and have been drawing and painting for a few years now. I offer up a few suggestions, mostly things that helped me starting out. I run the risk of sounding like a know-it-all or a snob, but I'm just hoping to offer up what little things I've learned along the way. I don't claim to be an accomplished artist, but just someone who was where you were once, and took similar advice from people who had been doing it longer than me. I hope to humbly pass on some of the things that were passed on to me.

I mostly use oils, but the startup for oils is a little more expensive. I would consider trying them out sometime, because they offer a little more freedom in what you can do with them, but you don't need them to learn to paint. You can mimic a lot of these capabilities with acrylics. With oils, you mix the paint with medium to adjust the viscosity of the paint. You can paint thick, chunky strokes, or have nice smooth flowing strokes, just by how much medium you add. Acrylic is water based, so try adding some water as you paint to adjust the viscosity, it will give you more control and more options. I'd suggest going to an auto parts store and getting a little oil squirter can, (yes, like the tin man had) and you can squirt small amounts of water on your pallet next to each puddle of paint and mix it in with your brush as you apply it. Less messy that way. (I think other people have mentioned this, they've got the right idea.)

Another thing that gives oils an advantage is working time. They take an incredibly long time to dry, which gives you lots of time to work in transitions and shadows while the paint is still wet. To achieve this with acrylics, which have a relatively fast dry time, try using some retarder in your paint. It's a clear, gel like substance that when mixed with the paint, helps keep it from drying, without changing the color or consistency. This gives you more freedom to work, and keeps you from being restricted by time (as much). You might be able to get it at a big box art store, but I recommend finding a smaller, locally owned one. People tend to know their shit in the smaller, local kinds of stores, and will be more helpful at answering questions, and have a better selection.

Another piece of advice I'd give is to learn a little bit of color theory, and practice mixing colors. My professor always said that you should never use a color straight from the tube, because chances are it wasn't really the color you need, and that if you look closer, the color you really want is a mix of a few things you have. He used to say "You think that winsor newton knew exactly what color you needed there?". It mostly just helps you look and see more specifically. 80% of painting is seeing more specifically, and getting your hand, brain, and eye to work as a unit. The book "Blue and Yellow Don't Make Green" Is one of the better books on color theory and mixing with paint. Check it out. You can practice by finding something, and trying to mix that exact color, holding them side by side to test it. You'll find often that 3, 4, maybe 5 different tube colors mix to make the one color you need. Being able to mix any color you want will open doors for you and let you have more options.

Also, try painting on large canvases/paper. Giving yourself more room to work is a big thing that helped me starting out. I was still gaining control over the paint and brush, and bigger space made it easier to hone those skills and fit more detail in. You can make your own canvases for a fraction of the store bought price, message me if you're interested in that, I could write up a quick how to.

I think you're going to notice yourself improve greatly over time, you'll gain control over your brush, the paint, and then anything's possible. I think you've already got a good eye for things, and this painting looks pretty good, damn good for a 3rd painting. My third painting was in black and white (hadn't even ventured into color yet) and it was a sloppy mess. You've got strong compositional lines here, nice color choices, and a good sense of depth. It looks like you're trying out a little bit of an impressionist style, which is good. Find awesome paintings/painters, and learn from them by imitating. Once you've imitated some of the things they do, you'll have learned a little more and will be able to find what you want to do.

Most of all, practice a lot. Hope this is encouraging, if you like it, keep at it. Also, another must read is "Art and Fear" Good luck!

u/thephotopiper · 2 pointsr/photography

>I'm also pretty jealous when I see photographers local to me getting paid gigs, exposure and kudos for what I think are terrible photos. These are ok photos to the untrained eye (most of the time), but when I see a photo that hasn't been straightened, is over saturated or is just someone playing with the clarity slider just because they can, it just makes me a little angry.

This is why I tell people not to waste money on an "art education." The reality of the photo industry these days is that very little about success comes from your ability to create good photographs. It's an extremely frustrating characteristic of the beast that is the Photo Industry.
There will always be people out there who are better at networking and convincing others to spend money on them.

I once had a friend get very angry with me for suggesting how lucky he was to be earning 100k a year at the age of 25 in the NYC photo industry. He said it was all hard work. Bottom line is there are thousands of people who work VERY hard and are VERY good at what they do, and they will still never "make it" in the industry. It's not an assessment of your worth, skills, talent, or drive. It is simply the nature of the beast.

RE: Your creative rut...
Don't be afraid to switch gears. Take time off and avoid photography. Or dramatically switch subjects. I'm sure everyone here has been burnt out before. That is when I started landscape photography, and hiking. After about a year of not doing "real photography" I am now scheduling shoots with dancers left and right. Back at it with a vengeance, you could say.

You may also enjoy reading the following two books, which my old photo professor gave everyone in my glass upon graduating.

Creative Authenticity

Art and Fear

I could elaborate in depth on any of the things mention here, but I shant bore you. There are already too many comments to go through.

u/viwrastupr · 2 pointsr/MLPdrawingschool

>You have no idea.

I have every idea. Everyone goes through this in art. Every. One. There is a wonderful book out there called Art & Fear which goes over... Art and Fear. It is short, an easy read, and really quite helpful for learning how we approach art and what this does and the role fear plays. If you've got a library card or $10 I really recommend it.

It does you no good to try and get things perfect the very first time. They won't be. Accept mistakes as a foundation for the future. Look at the undersketch guide and play around with seeking marks out. A clean piece of paper means nothing as far as learning art goes.

u/VivaSpiderJerusalem · 2 pointsr/NoStupidQuestions

Seriously, get that book. It's much better than my paltry words. I bet it's highly likely that you will end up like me: I'm on my 10th or so copy, as I've kept giving away mine to whomever has expressed artistsic doubt and just getting a new one. Most of the folks I've given it to have followed the same practice. It really helps.

u/go_fly_a_kite · 2 pointsr/WTF

one of my favorite coffee table books-

you might also enjoy:
why cats paints and why paint cats

u/TheWackyNeighbor · 2 pointsr/somethingimade

Why paint cats?

(sorry, it's just that the subject line here made me think of this.)

u/catbearpenguin · 2 pointsr/Gifts

The book Why Paint Cats is my go to and it is always a hit. It’s so convincing that people can’t quite tell if it is real or fake and it becomes a hilarious point of conversation and controversy.

I first used it at an office white elephant and from what I understand, it returns every year, even almost a decade later.

u/K-mania · 2 pointsr/aww

Why Paint Cats

Why Paint Cats: The Ethics of Feline Aesthetics

u/AQuietMan · 2 pointsr/funny
u/GasPop3 · 2 pointsr/hinduism

I have been meaning to read this book after I read a NYT article on the author but haven't got around to it yet (it addresses the commonality of Indian and Greek philosophy):

The Shape of Ancient Thought: Comparative Studies in Greek and Indian Philosophies

A video that might get you interested:

Thomas McEvilley on 'The Shape of Ancient Thought'

About the author:

Thomas McEvilley

NYT article

Edit: Also, check out this blog by Bibhu Dev Misra for very insightful/interesting articles:

Myths, Symbols and Mysteries

u/JayWalken · 2 pointsr/askphilosophy

In addition to yumchoumein's books, Thomas McEvilley's The Shape of Ancient Thought addresses at least your related question. Obviously, information about Eastern influences on Presocratic thought is less abundant than Eastern influences on post-Socratic thought (not that information on the latter is abundant). If the latter interests you, though, see the Gymnosophists and the following tidbit from this entry on Cynic influences:

>Perhaps of importance were tales of Indian philosophers, known to later Greeks as the Gymnosophists, who had adopted a strict asceticism together with a disrespect for established laws and customs.

This article - The Yogi who met Socrates - was one article that I read on this that seemed to capture it.

The Wikipedia entry on Greco-Buddhism seems to cover everything mentioned above, which I didn't realise until I had typed it, so it's staying...

I wrote a recent undergraduate essay on Heraclitus in which I discussed the similarity between his thought and the thought of the mystics, both Eastern and Western. Read Heraclitus's fragments amid a few Zen lineage texts and you'll be convinced of the universal character of the mystical experience, but I don't suspect Buddhism of having influenced Heraclitus.

u/lvl_5_laser_lotus · 2 pointsr/Buddhism

Talk about a good deal: the kindle edition is only 3 bucks! And you don't have to have a kindle to read it; they got PC and mobile apps.

u/H-conscious · 2 pointsr/edmproduction

I've heard of this book, has it helped you a lot? I have Art and Fear Same idea. Actually never finished that one. Can't even finish my books haha.

u/RogueStudio · 2 pointsr/writing

In the entire world, there is no one who can write exactly like me. Yes, there will be ideas, plots, and story ideas similar to mine, but I am my own unique voice that not even artificial intelligence can appropriately analyze and replicate properly yet. And we all only have limited time here to put our voice somewhere the rest of the universe can hear.

Oh, eventually, as you write more, you find out what intrinsically motivates you to push through all the blocks and BS. This motivator will be different from person to person. It won't necessarily come when you're writing, either. It can come very randomly, whether that be in other creative pursuits (reading other stories, drawing, music, etc), or just when you're standing in the shower, blah blah blah.

And if what I'm saying doesn't mean anything (no offense taken)...there's a lot of psychology behind the creative process and fear/anxiety, this book is an interesting primer onto that train of thought, often pops up on books for illustrators or designers to read.

u/Nephrastar · 2 pointsr/Random_Acts_Of_Amazon

I just got done reading The Art of Fear for the umpteenth time and every single time it gives me a reason to continue doing what I am doing and to never compare yourself with those around you and realize that every other artist out there has the same anxieties that I do in creating content. It is a wonderful book and I immediately recommend it for artists of all levels.

u/bloodstreamcity · 2 pointsr/writing

I think every artist has those days. Some more than others, but all of us struggle with doubt. It's part of the process. It weeds out a lot of bad shit. Embrace it or let it win. You have two solutions I'm aware of.

One, walk away. Maybe you need a breather. Read something. Watch something. Do something. Recharge your batteries. Sometimes a block is your brain's way of saying it's got nothing to give anymore. When a campfire goes out you don't curse at it expecting it to flare up. You feed it more wood.

Two, keep pushing. Start writing fast. I mean really fast. Don't stop for air. Stop reading what you wrote. Stop it. Set a timer if you have to and don't let yourself stop typing. It's exciting. You need to be excited.

> I'll spend hours rewriting a phrase or a scene

Stop that. You're making it worse. Just thinking about that. No.

If you want to be reassured that you're not alone in feeling this way, read a book called Art & Fear. If you want to save yourself time and money, just know that someone wrote a book called Art & Fear.

u/poringo · 2 pointsr/gaming

I suggest you to read Killing is harmless if you haven't already. Pretty good read.

u/theuselessgeneration · 2 pointsr/pcgaming

Definitely grab Killing is Harmless by Brenden Keogh if you were really unsettled by the story.

u/Disrupturous · 1 pointr/graffhelp

The History of American Graffiti. Best one your gonna find lit wise

u/NoSeedsNoSeeds · 1 pointr/Bombing

so this book basically did all your work for you lmao. It includes the history of every individual city

u/wiseones · 1 pointr/photography

Ways of Seeing is so, so good. There's a book, too - well worth it.

u/steveandthesea · 1 pointr/webdev

There's a few books that are good for understanding how design works; John Berger's Ways of Seeing, Thinking with Type by Ellen Lupton, and anything by Stefan Sagmeister, Steven Heller, Michael Beirut, Jessica Hische, Adrian Shaughnessy...

Check out publications like Eye magazine and Creative Review.

No doubt from looking up any of these you'll find oodles more too.

Also, the best way to learn is to work with designers, ask them questions, find out why they do something. Have a critical mind though, there's some awful designers out there.

I'm afraid I don't have many resources specific to UX/UI. I studied graphic design at university so I really just apply my understanding from that, but there's loads out there.

u/mt0711 · 1 pointr/learnart

A person (including you) shouldn't judge your initial efforts and exercises in art any more than they would judge the worth of a mathematician on the practice problems in his old algebra textbook.

That being said, don't let your perceived lack of ability keep you from tackling projects you're interested in because you feel you need more practice first. Keep practicing but don't be afraid to say what you want for fear of technical ability.

Some books:

The Natural Way to Draw

The Art Spirit

Art and Fear

u/KingGilgamesh1979 · 1 pointr/worldnews

Well, then I recommend you read this book so that you'll ready for the possible coming apocalypse: The Little Ice Age.

It's a great read. You can follow it up with this: The Long Summer.

u/olivepudding · 1 pointr/books

The Dictator's Handbook by Bruce Bueno de Mesquita and Alastair Smith

The Little Ice Age by Brian Fagan - insightful/informative book about the role climate change has played in human civilization

u/TheDeug · 1 pointr/literature

This is my last comment on the thread unless it gets back to what I originally posted the Hemingway quote about in the first place, which is holding true to a set of standards that one develops over an extended period of exposure to a certain kind of art.

Instead it has become an examination of my personal visual art theory, which I am glad to discuss. However, it's not what I wanted to talk about within the context of the Hemingway quote.

I will begin by REstating: GROSS simplification. What I said concerning the cave paintings was a gross simplification.

There have been several instances in which words have been put into my mouth. I never said that:
>all painting can trace its lineage to French cave art

I did say that those caves were the origin of visual language. That was a mistake. I should have said that they were one of the origins.

What I am talking about is not aesthetics in terms of a style. (The style of Chinese landscape vs. the style of Egyptian sculpture.) I am also not talking about whatever impetus it was that motivated these peoples to create art. You call me Eurocentric, when all I was trying to do was to put in as simple a statement I could the idea that color, line, shape, FORM was introduced in some of the earliest recorded examples of art that we have. The Asian arts possess these qualities as well. As do the entirety of great visual art.

What I am talking about is formalism. But let me define the way in which I am applying formalism. Formalism talks about the end of art. End here meaning the final product. Formalism does not say that Rothko set out to make a blue and yellow painting because that is aesthetically pleasing. I don't know what Rothko's motives were when beginning his painting. He may have thought at the outset that he was going to make a green painting. But the end was a blue and yellow one.

True, formalism will never be able to talk about the poetry that happens when those two colors start to interact, but it can look at it from a distance and say: This painting deals with the visual properties of color. It does so in a good way.

I agree with you when you say that art cannot "be completely stripped of its context and described entirely by its formal qualities." However, looking at it by its formal qualities is, I believe, the only way one can gain an objective view of it.

I also agree that "a painting is more than the sum of its brushtrokes." The idea that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts (gestalt psychology) is not, and has never been, in conflict with formalism.

I have tried, and obviously failed, to convey my ideas here. However, I can at least point you in the direction of where my ideas come from.

Rudolf Arnheim was a Gestalt psychologist who wrote extensively on visual perception. His book Art and Visual Perception was and is essential to my understanding of art.

u/skwiskwikws · 1 pointr/conlangs
u/adlerchen · 1 pointr/linguistics

Pirahã is fairly analytic. While there are a good amount of suffixes that mark modality and aspect, there are no agreement patterns and those suffixes (I think) only have distribution in VPs. See The Handbook of Amazonian Languages vol. 1, 1986 for details. In addition, Mithun 1999's The Languages of Native North America reports that many of the Inuit trade pigeons were/are analytic.

u/McG4rn4gle · 1 pointr/conspiracy

That is more or less the conclusion of his book 'Failed States'

u/MondoHawkins · 1 pointr/Design

It's not strictly a design book but I recommend

Vision and Art : The Biology of Seeing

Edit: link got mashed up...

u/Deanwinjester · 1 pointr/Buddhism

Check out this scholarly book about the Shaolin The Shaolin Monastery: History, Religion, and the Chinese Martial Arts

u/10000Buddhas · 1 pointr/Buddhism

Hi Nikolai,

This video is directly from the Zen monastery you saw in extreme pilgrim: and may be of interest.

For a literary dry history of Shaolin and martial arts, Meir Shahar wrote a recent book summarizing a good amount of information and is a good start on the topic :

Note that his book is not from the point of a practitioner, nor from one steeped in the cultural nor social conditions in and around the temple, let alone in Chinese society.. there's a lot to be said about Chinese oral history, destroyed records, cultural shifts in the past 50 years, and language difficulties that make the subject hazy and complex.

There's also mixing between "shamanic" and qi cultivation practices associated with daoists and early Chinese Buddhist practice, where Zhen Qi cultivation becomes a similar theme, and one of the practices involved in the video above (dissimilar to the other fighting/krav maga you're mentioning). So yes Qi cultivation had been around since before Bodhidharma in China and early practitioners applied various qi concepts and methods (although no evidence any came from or were associated with Bodhidharma)

u/_namaste · 1 pointr/infp

Check out Art & Fear along with The War of Art.

Tons of good things to say about these books as someone whose perfectionistic brain has ruined many projects by screaming "worthless, pointless" over and over again.

u/tst__ · 1 pointr/Advice

Judging by the competitiveness for jobs in the game industry you got to stand out.
If you haven't read it, read On Becoming a Game Writer.

General steps to stand out:

  • Become a personal brand. Start a blog, twitter, be active on mailing lists, etc.
  • If there are less than 50 - 100 books on game writing, read them (or stop if you can't learn anything about game writing anymore)
  • Read all the classics on writing, take writing courses
  • Read books on how to improve as an artist (like Art & Fear, Steal Like an Artist, etc.)
  • Read books about story writing / telling
  • Learn about about communication & marketing (this will help you to get the word out and a job)
  • Blog about your journey, start talking about the books, principles you learned; maybe get interviews with other game writers;
  • Read blog post / articles about game writing (e.g. google "game writing", read the first 30 - 100 pages) & start following blogs
  • Apply your knowledge, e.g. analyze game plots or game writing
  • Write, write, write. Produce something. (see *)
  • Create games - there are so many programmers out there who just love to make a game, contact them, make it happen
  • Connect to the industry - ask for advice, invite somebody to dinner, be a nice guy
  • Publish your work. Get honest feedback, this is the best way to improve even if it hurts.

    Summary Be so good that they can't ignore you.

    * There's a great story in Art & Fear about a pottery course. The students were divided into two groups. One group got judged on the quality of their vase, they other on the quantity. Which one produced the better vases? The second one.
u/babblefrog · 1 pointr/edmproduction

I would bet only 1% of artists in any artistic field make enough money out of it to be worthwhile. You have to do it for yourself, not for other people, because (probably) nobody else is ever going to understand your art.

There is a book that might help you, though it doesn't focus specifically on music: Art and Fear: Observations On the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking

u/ilikeboarding · 1 pointr/GetMotivated

Art & Fear if you haven't read it.

u/Cashewcamera · 1 pointr/writing

There is a great, afternoon sized book, that covers this really well.

Art and Fear

Edit: Fixed link.

u/endless_coil · 1 pointr/learnart

Art & Fear is a good read on the subject.

u/sick__bro · 1 pointr/Filmmakers

Rebel Without a Crew by Robert Rodriguez is pretty great.

Not as film related bur more related to the artistic process is Art and Fear. I highly recommend this to everybody I talk about art with. It's a great book to take notes in and destroy with highlighters.

u/milkeater · 1 pointr/java

An interesting parable from the Art of Fear

The ceramics teacher announced on opening day that he was dividing the class into two groups. All those on the left side of the studio, he said, would be graded solely on the quantity of work they produced, all those on the right solely on its quality.

His procedure was simple: on the final day of class he would bring in his bathroom scales and weigh the work of the “quantity” group: fifty pound of pots rated an “A”, forty pounds a “B”, and so on. Those being graded on “quality”, however, needed to produce only one pot”albeit a perfect one”to get an “A”.

Well, came grading time and a curious fact emerged: the works of highest quality were all produced by the group being graded for quantity. It seems that while the “quantity” group was busily churning out piles of work”and learning from their mistakes”the “quality” group had sat theorizing about perfection, and in the end had little more to show for their efforts than grandiose theories and a pile of dead clay.

To each their own but I'd say hiding behind the Quality vs. Quantity argument is a path to becoming irrelevant. Fail and fail fast, people don't have time for you to plan the world....still fail....and then fix it. Otherwise Waterfall wouldn't be such a curse word these days.

I hope we have the ability to reel in those who are fired up to make shit happen, not those clinging to some semblance of safety that never existed.

u/supermattmasta · 1 pointr/FL_Studio
u/WurzelGummidge · 1 pointr/photography

I have a quick read of this little book whenever I feel like I'm in a cul-de-sac.

Art & Fear : Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking

From the back cover

Art and Fear explores the way art gets made, the reasons it often it often doesn't get made, and the nature of the difficulties that cause so many artists to give up along the way.

This is a book about what it feels like to sit in your studio or classroom, at your wheel or keyboard, easel or camera, trying to do the work you need to do. It is about committing your future to your own hands, placing Free Will above predestination, choice above chance. It is about finding your own work.

u/IronMyrs · 1 pointr/learnart


I'm on day um... 63 I think? I don't have my sketchbook on me at the moment, but I was challenged by a friend to do one drawing a day. No restrictions on content or detail. Just had to be in pen, and had to be daily. So far it's been FANTASTIC to just be in a position of "well, I don't wanna draw today, but I gotta get this done before I go to bed." It really beats the fear of a blank page out of you when you know that you MUST draw today, even if it's just abstract polygons.

Another recommendation is Art and Fear. It discusses what you're feeling on a very high level (it doesn't talk about technique at all, just things like motivation around the creative mind and thought process) and the book itself is short.

u/fotoford · 1 pointr/photography

Surely you've heard the term "late bloomer." Photography is fucking hard and it takes years to actually get good at it. If you put in the time and love it, it will love you back. Get this book because it was made for people like you (and me): Art & Fear by David Bayles and Ted Orland. Get it. Read it. You'll be happy you did.

u/Vylanius · 1 pointr/Random_Acts_Of_Amazon

This is something I need because I could use all the help I can get when it comes to artwork. Its my primary source of income at the moment, so anything that could aid me in that would be spectacular.

Chuck Finley

u/CloudDrone · 1 pointr/WeAreTheMusicMakers

Yeah, man. Look, I hope you didn't think I was being too harsh. I tried to make constructive criticism.

I will say this: I really appreciate hearing when artists try things that are different and out of the ordinary. Its necessary, and I will always support artists who try things differently more than artists who tread the same tired waters in a more polished way.

Yes, you could use some practice in the application of your ideas. But I hope this will be a fire under your ass a little to focus in on taking the little elements that you like about what you do, and find a way to do them better. That's where the true magic happens as an artist.

I'm reading a book right now called "So Good They Can't Ignore You: Why Skills Trump Passion in the Quest for Work You Love" by Cal Newport.

The main idea of the book is breaking down the idea of being motivated to do what you do based on passion, and how that's an idea that can be dangerous. He says we can think about our work in two ways. There is the passion mindset, and the craftsman mindset.

  • In the passion mindset, our focus is on what value our work will bring us.

  • In the craftsman mindset, our focus is on what value we can bring to our work.

    The passion mindset leads us to find more heartbreak and creative blocks in our workflow because of our expectations for the kind of feelings and value we perceive our work to be adding to our life.

    The craftsman mindset however, is much more fulfilling, realistic, and helpful in the long run. Our minds become not consumed with the grandiose ideas of how amazing our work is, and instead are focused on how we can improve them. This ultimately leads to a point where our work is undoubtedly much more full of value, because of all the energy we put into giving our work value. We can't help but feel the value in our work. We don't have to rely on vague abstractions of passion and trying to stay optimistic with our work, because we know exactly how much work we put into it.

    I have found this to be especially true, and there are a lot of other theories and things I've found along the way that support it too.

    The book mentions Ira Glass's Famous quote on advice for beginners. The idea that we've got to just keep working and learning and improving and not focus on how good our work is. Here's a really nicely animated version of the short speech.

    Then there's the famous 10,000 hour idea from Malcom Gladwell's book Outliers ( The idea that it takes 10,000 hours of practice to become a master. I always take that with a grain of salt, but there is something to it. I generally take it though that it takes 10,000 hours of deliberately working on getting better to become a true master. 10,000 hours of casual playing will make you a master at casual playing. Like Kenny G. (who I still consider a master, by the way. He's the best at what he does, even if what he does is fucking simple)

    Another of my favorites is the story from the book "Art & Fear" ( about the pottery teacher who turned one semester class into an experiment. He split the class into two halves. One half were told they would be graded on only one pot that they could spend all semester working on, and the other class were told they would be graded on the amount of pots they created. The long story short is that the side of the class who took all semester working on one pot had inferior pots than the side of the class who wasn't graded on the quality of work, but by the quantity they produced. The side who made a lot of pots gave themselves so many opportunities to learn from their mistakes simply because they gave themselves the freedom to make them. Once you do something so many times, little changes each time mean you find a better method. There is only so much you can do to improve when the approach hasn't been practiced, and all the fundamental skills haven't been repeated over and over.

    Something that can help us to keep in this mindset is from one of my favorite books "The Artists Way" by Julia Cameron ( She suggests a practice to help artists work through creative blocks by a process of freewriting with a pen and paper, a practice she recommends for every kind of artist. She suggest starting every single day out with writing 3 pages of longhand writing without stopping. The only rule is to not stop. You write and write, even if you have to repeat stupid things over and over because you can't think of anything else. You come up with ways to keep yourself from stopping by writing about your day, or your grocery list, or saying "this is stupid" over and over. Anything to keep you from stopping. It gets the juices out and you keep going and going, and going. You practice getting over the fear of making the mistakes. You are practicing your art. Free expression where there are no mistakes. You practice coming up with ways to keep going. Then when you are done with the three pages, you close up the notebook and you don't read over it. You are done with the pages and you move on with your day. There is no reason to look over what you wrote since you are not critiquing what you wrote. The process is about getting over creative blocks and creatively acting without hesitation. I've found this practice to be invaluable.

    Some advice that started to help me was to not spend too much time on each of my songs deliberating over details, until I was good enough where it was hurting the final product to not dive in deeper. I also don't listen to my tracks over after finishing. Instead, when I finish a song, or make a recording. I listen to it and set it aside and begin working on something else. After at least a day, or sometimes more, I listen to it with a notepad and take notes as objectively as I can, and try to find ways in which I would have improved on the song. Things I could have done better or approached differently. If its a couple of small things, I might fix them right there, but if its a bunch of bigger things, I just appreciate that I learned a lot from that song and try to incorporate what I learned into a new song to practice it.

    All of these all point toward the same thing, and I hope you find some of the advice useful if you try it out. I'm not telling you this because I think your music sucks, but because I think you have what it takes because of how you are trying things outside of the ordinary.

    My ideas to all artists: Abandon thoughts of your work being brilliant. Focus on keeping moving. Let yourself make terrible music. Learn from your mistakes without getting down on yourself. One finished song that you had to think creatively to get to work even though it sucked, is a better use of your time than 20 unfinished alright ideas sitting as loops. If you do like making lots of loops, export them as audio loops and churn them out like an assembly line. Don't deliberate on every move when your time would be better spend actively working through a block. In art, mistakes is where magic happens. Hone in on your mistakes and see if you can let them dictate the direction of where your song goes. Focus on improving your skills instead of feeling good about being an artist.

    I hope this wasn't just a bunch of gibberish. Let me know what you think about this kind of stuff if you're interested. I'm always down to talk about it when I can't be making music.
u/shalis · 1 pointr/ArtFundamentals

I'm a newbie as well, so take my words with a grain or two of salt. I've been working at it for about as long as you have. Everyone trying to follow an artistic pursuit of any kind struggles with that, and it never goes away neither, as the more you know the more you are aware of what you don't know.

Now keep in mind that, just like me, it sounds like you are still working on your fundamentals. Its easy to get discouraged at this stage (heck I know I am right now, as I keep trying to draw plants and feels like i'm hitting my head against a wall) because you are basically learning how to (visually) talk and listen. Its frustrating when one can't express oneself, we are basically at "gugugaga moma?" stage. Learning to visualize 3d forms in 2d space, being able to see the information that you need from the subject that you are examining, being able to break complex forms into simple primaries, being aware of flow within 3d space, etc, these are the things you should be looking for progress in as that has been your focus with the boxes, organic shapes and even the figure drawing stuff I would think. Pretty pictures will come easy after that skill is comfortably under your belt.

Saying that, I try to categorize my progress in 2 ways. Mechanical and Conceptual. Mechanical skills progress is slow but progressive, all it takes is conscious repetition (conscious as in not in autopilot, you don't learn anything if you are not aware of what you are doing), Conceptual thou... that is what gives you the headaches as it often requires you to change how you think, progress in this is far more sporadic, but when it comes its explosive and completely changes how your art work looks. It takes not repetition, but analysis, reflection and study.

This is a good book that address the struggle : Art & Fear

u/chlamydia13 · 1 pointr/WTF

From the book "Why Paint Cats".

I own it. The book is an amazing treasure trove of WTF an ludicrous art theory.

u/adamunknown · 1 pointr/MakingaMurderer

according to this book, painting cats is something people do

u/callmelightningjunio · 1 pointr/funny

Immediately thought of this book.

u/fairshoulders · 1 pointr/IAmA

Relevant book

u/cazvan · 1 pointr/philosophy

>Any literature would be great.

"The Shape of Ancient Thought" is a very detailed comparison between Indian and Greek philosophy starting with the first sources available. Some of McEvilley's arguments have more evidence than others.

u/stoabboats · 1 pointr/classics

It's not exactly what you asked, but you would probably really enjoy The Shape of Ancient Thought by Thomas McEvilley. "Spanning thirty years of intensive research, this book proves what many scholars could not explain: that today’s Western world must be considered the product of both Greek and Indian thought—Western and Eastern philosophies. Thomas McEvilley explores how trade, imperialism, and migration currents allowed cultural philosophies to intermingle freely throughout India, Egypt, Greece, and the ancient Near East."

u/zummi · 1 pointr/sorceryofthespectacle

I've read it twice before but I wasn't ready. I'm closer now to being able to parse all the references and implications.

Have you by chance read Thomas McEvilleys "The Shape of Ancient Thought: Comparative Studies in Greek and Indian Philosophies"?

u/subcide · 1 pointr/xboxone

If anyone's keen on diving into the game further, there's a REALLY interesting short ebook called "Killing is Harmless" which is an in depth critical reading of the game

u/Imxset21 · 1 pointr/AskLiteraryStudies

You'd enjoy reading the one critical book I know on the topic of video game narratives, "Killing is Harmless: A Critical Reading of Spec Ops: The Line".

u/arborday · 1 pointr/Gaming4Gamers

The two most interesting books I've read on video games have been Tristan Donovan's fascinating history of the medium, "Replay: The History of Video Games". It is a very in-depth history that gets down into a lot of nitty gritty stuff about the birth of video games and stays very in-depth up until about the late 90s when it starts to go big picture. Still a great read.

If you're looking for something that's more of a critical piece, I'd suggest Brendan Keogh's close reading of Spec Ops: The Line, "Killing is Harmless". It's an incredible way to enhance your playthrough of what is already an incredibly emotional game. Keogh breaks down everything from the allusions to literature and film to the significance of scripted events in the game. The only advice I have is if you haven't played the game before and you try and read along as you play the game you do get hit with some spoilers as Keogh assumes you've finished the game when you're reading the book. Still def worth your time though.

u/RJ815 · 1 pointr/truegaming

Glad you mentioned that MGS 2 analysis, totally wanted to bring it up myself having read it recently. That same site's MGS 4 analysis could be worth a read too. While by no means the only games to inspire interesting analysis, MGS 2 and MGS 4 in particular have inspired some interesting writings because various people felt that those games' stories were (if you were paying attention) clearly antagonistic towards the player's expectations.

"Killing is Harmless", an ebook entirely about Spec Ops: The Line, could also be worthy of consideration.

u/pk3um258 · 1 pointr/Games

Not to derail from this particular discussion, but if you're at all interested in Spec Ops: The Line, check out "Killing is Harmless" by Brendan Keogh. You can find some great excerpts from Google.

u/colewrus · 1 pointr/gaming

Yager did this in almost everything, there is actual character progression through the game. The squad actually looks physically beat up, the executions become more brutal, and walker's dialogue becomes more aggressive and unhinged...or more like a Gears of War character's dialogue...
I'll go ahead and leave a plug here for Killing is Harmless, easily worth the $5 if only because it is such a unique piece of game writing.

u/kneekneeknee · 0 pointsr/museum

(Sorry to be slow to respond; I just got back from work.)

Thanks for your long, thoughtful comment.

My critique of the painting grows out of the long history of paintings like this and how they were used. There's a ton of writing on paintings like this -- just as there were a TON of paintings like this -- which were hung in men's bedrooms/private spaces. Such paintings might now seem pretty tame but at the time they were not. According to art historians, they were painted precisely to help with male desire. (See, for example, T. J. Clark's The Painting of Modern Life, about painting in Paris in the 19th century; the book shows page after page of paintings just like the The Massage and discusses their "uses." Another commenter here mentioned John Berger's Ways of Seeing (book or video. Or watch Hannah Gadsby's amazing Nanette on Netflix.)

But even through they seem pretty tame now, such paintings still feed attitudes about women. And the attitude toward women this painting presents is all in-line (for me) with what we are seeing now in the Kavanaugh hearings, for example: The attitude toward women of this painting, like the apparent attitude of Kavanaugh and the other "Renate Alumni" guys, is that women exist for men. Women are supposed to be passive objects for male desire.

Compare this painting to Manet's Olympia, for example, which also shows a white woman and a subservient black woman. The white woman looks directly at viewers, meeting their eyes, making it hard to think of her as just an object to look at; in the painting we discuss here, by Debat-Ponsan, the white woman's face isn't even shown. Both paintings put women of color in secondary, passive positions.

One painting alone is not going to teach men to believe that women are passive objects. But it is precisely because there are THOUSANDS of paintings like this, shown over and over and in different places, that they can teach attitudes I think we don't want to have toward each other.

So I clearly disagree with you that this painting and the current male-dominated-political drama have nothing to do with each other. This painting, as part of a long tradition of representations of women in art and film, has a large part to play in how men learn to think women are their playthings.

u/Gizank · 0 pointsr/Art

These are just about my favorite art books.

The Art Spirit by Robert Henri

What Painting Is by James Elkins

A Giacometti Portrait by James Lord

u/faaackksake · 0 pointsr/gaming

yay let's all be nice for the sake of being nice, you should take all criticism on board, just don't take it to heart, if you're creating something for yourself you shouldn't really care about the approval of others. read this :

u/SundownKid · 0 pointsr/patientgamers

Now go pick up this book for 5 bucks, it's an amazing in depth analysis of the game.

u/myncy · 0 pointsr/gaming

Except you have the choice not to play the game.

Edit: I'm sounding roundabout. The point they're trying to make is that when you claim you have "no choice" but to do something in a game you always have another option - stop playing. Take out the idea that you paid for the game and think more that you're just there for the experience. If you are doing something you think is wrong, why are you continuing to do it?

I'd also recommend the essay/short book Killing is Harmless which explores the game on a level-by-level basis and is a good, short read.

u/Whitewash808 · -1 pointsr/interestingasfuck

Of course it's not just about the art, just as any medium is not purely about aesthetics or entertainment. It is however completely and utterly idiotic to generalize an entire communities like you seem to think you can.
>It's about going out and bombing.

Bombing? Really? Wow... holy shit, who do you think these people are? ISIS? Yes painting on something without having prior consent of the owner is illegal; I don't deny that at all. But firstly not all individuals who practice graffiti leave their work on the street, loads of people put it to practice at home on canvas. It's a style of painting, deal with it. Secondly as I said before of course it's not all about the art, everything is done to convey some sort of message. For example, you refusing to acknowledge the simple fact that graffiti can be legally produced and in a professional setting. Lastly Lumping all graffiti artist in with terror groups is the same caliber of generalization and statement that particularly conservative Eco groups hurl at industrial organizations. Yes it is true that industrialization is hard on the enviornemnt, if and when it it done right the benefits far outweigh the minuses. Same with graffiti, yes if left unmanaged it can cause great damage. But as any mural or gallery can show you, management of impulse ultimately leads to a nicer space for us all.

And with that I refer you to this book:*Version*=1&*entries*=0