What are You Reading?

I have a wonderful collection of art books on various subjects such as drawing, painting, design, and color. Each book was purchased for a reason.  The books may have been recommended by a friend, a teacher at a workshop, a magazine, or a book club.  Each book was received with great anticipation.

Some how, some way, life gets busy and books get pushed aside.  In my world, reading is a special treat, a privilege I allow myself to indulge in when everything else is done.  Lately, I seldom read.  It was nice when I wrote the weekly articles on Julia Cameron’s book, Walking in This World.  Click here to read those articles. I allowed myself to read because it was part of my job.  Funny how we can rationalize our eccentric behavior.

Anyway, I have a lovely collection of art books, many of which have not been read.  Some I have glanced through; some I have read the first few chapters.  For the most part, my collection of art books has not been read word for word.

The other day I decided to remedy that.  I pulled a book off the shelf and started reading.  Actually, I pulled a couple of books off the shelf and took them with me on a substitute teaching job.  When you substitute teach you usually have one period of the day that you are free. This is the teacher’s planning period or conference period.  That is, unless there is a need for you to pitch in and help in another classroom. So, I take something with me to work on during that time. I hate to be idle. Often, I write my blog articles.

So, I started reading a book I have had for years.  I don’t remember why I bought the book. It could be that I absolutely love the painting on the cover. It could be because the media written about is a combination of all my favorites. Whatever the reason, I am pouring over this book, taking notes, reading every caption.

Sometimes I get bogged down in the demonstrations and have to take a break. It takes a lot of concentration to look at the progression of work in the demonstrations trying to see the difference from one photo to the next.  But over all I am enjoying this freedom to read.

Since I have been reading I have had many ideas for paintings as well as a strong yearning to get back to the drawing board.  Yes, I mean that literally. So hopefully allowing myself to read will kick start a fresh outlook for a painting.

Reading art books can inspire creativity. Reading art books can give you new ideas and new ways to work with your favorite medium. Reading  is a wonderful learning experience. What are you reading today?

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