Pub. Date:
Capra Press
Art and Fear: Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking

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

by David Bayles, Ted Orland
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Art & Fear: Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 34 reviews.
kmconverse More than 1 year ago
I believe this book accomplished what it set out to accomplish--to describe the perils and rewards of artmaking. It was not hard to identify with many of the obstacles it describes that are often encountered in the artmaking process. The book was extremely insightful and had some amazing quotes, and in that light I found it to be a humbling and enlightening experience. However, I would not recommend this book to anyone who is struggling to overcome their fear in art. I'm sure there are other books and resources that would be much better fit to motivate and inspire you to continue your art. This is not so much a "how to" book, but rather a book that identifies common conditions that prevent us from creating. In other words, it points out the problems. When I read it, I think I was expecting more SOLUTIONS, or at least something a little more positive, but that is not actually the purpose of the book. Overall, I found this book to be a great resource for someone who is seeking to understand WHY there are obstacles in artmaking (which was it's purpose), but not so great if you are seeking HOW to overcome those obstacles.
Mark40CO More than 1 year ago
Great read for anyone who creates. Leads you through the pitfalls of what art making can feel like. Takes the excuses away and leaves you feeling free to create. All artists should read this!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Definitely delivers on what it promises. An organized collection of essays discussing the major pitfalls, hurdles and issues everyday, yes, everyday people go through in the process of practicing their art, hindering and suppressing them, sometimes to the point of getting them to quit. If you've quit or thought of quitting, or have become paralyzingly frustrated, or just having a hard time making music, art, dance, whatever, this is the book for you. Let me add a little disclaimer here: this is NOT a book with all the answers. Ratherm it has some of the answers, and leads to some of the mroe important questions, questions you'll need to answer yourself. Really great book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I don't know how it took me so long to find this tiny book of big ideas. It should be required reading @ every art school.
Christine Okonkwo More than 1 year ago
Spoke to my soul
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'm not much of a reader and this is one of the first books I've ever read that actually spoke to me. You don't have to be a professional artist to know what it's like to be a frustrated artist. This book not only validated how I feel when trying to create, but moreso, gave me inspiration to push forward! I've dog-eared and highlighted nearly every page in this book and have even taken notes (in a separate notebook) to refer back to when I start to question myself again. It's not a book to help you get creative; it's a book that pushes you to make that thumbnail sketch or idea in your head come to life! An excellent resource for those who need help making their ideas a reality.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book should be required reading for all college freshman regardless of their major. It not only gives practical advice on approaching art, but it encourages experimentation and expression. I encourage anyone to pick up this book you won't be able to stop reading it until it is done.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The pages of this book are littered with insights. Keep a pencil handy, because you'll be underlining a lot. Among my favorites: 'After all, you know better than anyone else the accidental nature of much that appears in your art, not to mention all those elements you know originated with others (and even some you never even intended but which the audience has read into your work). From there it's only a short hop to feeling like you're just going through the motions of being an artist. It's easy to imagine that real artists know what they're doing, and that they -- unlike you -- are entitled to feel good about themselves and their art. Fear that you are not a real artist causes you to undervalue your work.' So, forget your therapist(s). Just buy this book. And then do your art.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book has a long life on art class to-be-read shelves, which is where I came across it. It celebrates art as a conceptual leap in a world that might see it as craft. It helped me reconceptualize my own struggle in this fueld between definition and actuality. Worth searching for and reading more than once
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book gave me a sense of purpose and an understanding of my whole approach to art and the art-making process. You will be guided to discover your own voice of expression. I believe every artist, writer, photographer, musician, creator should get this book. You will love it!
chriszodrow on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
One to keep and re-read again and again. I love little books that make great and lasting points. This is one of them.
meghancochrane on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I got this book from the library and then I had to buy it for my own collection. It resonated with me as an artist. I needed to be able to write in it and respond. There are some really great passages in there that help me to get past my doubts and artist blocks. It should be in every artists library and it should be manditory reading for every studio art major.
paulsignorelli on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Years before Malcolm Gladwell built a wonderfully compelling case for the critical importance of practice and opportunity in "Outliers: The Story of Success," David Bayles and Ted Orland spent seven years producing their thin, lean, and absolutely inspiring work on how we can develop our own creative artistry through faith and perseverance. "You make good work by (among other things) making lots of work that isn't very good, and gradually weeding out the parts that aren¿t good, the parts that aren't yours" (p. 26) they write, and in the process do us all a favor by reminding us that creativity flourishes through what we learn from failure as much as from what we learn through success. We're working with the basics here, as we can see from chapter headings including "Fears About Yourself," "Fears About Others," and "Finding Your Work." The writers address the perils of trying to create work that pleases others rather than work that begins by pleasing ourselves--a theme of interest to anyone involved in creative endeavors, including any trainer-teacher-learner. They remind us that if we teach, we also need to set aside time for pursuing our craft--a warning that applies equally to trainers who may not make the time to continue pursuing the learning opportunities that they need to be effective. They conclude by suggesting that making art "is to sing with the human voice" and that if we are to persevere, we would do well to begin by developing our own unique voices and using those voices to explore our darkest chasms to produce the "revealing light" of our own minds" (p. 117).
MatteoGrilli on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
' What is your art really about? Where is it going? What stands in the way of getting there? These are questions that matter...' A guide for everybody, even non artists as they may see themselves as artists again... It's not just about visual arts, but ANY form of artistic expression.
deliriousnewyorker on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Much cheaper than therapy. A great book to help with the common pitfalls of art making, most notably quitting. It's well written with a helpful and frank tone (no pretension here).
krobbie67 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Sadly, I found this book horribly boring and uninteresting so much so that my mind often wandered as I was reading. However, I thoroughly appreciate what the authors were saying and trying to achieve.
Clueless on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I wish I could quote the whole book here. It just made me giggle again and again. For example, this is me reading Tarot cards;Art is exquisitely responsive. Nowhere is feedback so absolute as in the making of art. The work, vibrates in perfect harmony to everything we put into it ¿ or withhold from it. In the outside world there may be no reaction tow hat we do; in our artwork there is nothing but reaction.The breathtakingly wonderful thing about this reaction is its truthfulness. Look at your work and it tells you how it is when you hold back or when you embrace. When you are lazy, your art is lazy; when you hold back, it holds back; when you hesitate, it stands there staring, hands in its pockets.And this is the recipe for changing someone else¿s mind;When Columbus returned from the New World and proclaimed the earth was round, almost everyone else went right on believing the earth was flat. Then they died ¿ and the next generation grew up believing the world was round. That¿s how people change their minds.
fabrilicious on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Began well, but faded. Never finished it
jujuspots on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The most useful and thought provoking book I have read on the process of making art! Outstanding!
jwm24 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The paradox of artmaking is that most artists believe on some level that they are (or should be) exceptional individuals with a unique vision, but also that that vision should be one that most people should be able to identify with. This book does nothing to resolve that paradox, but it does present us with reasons to live with the contradiction (of our own ordinariness and our art's timelessness; ars longa, vita brevis) and go on producing in spite of it.
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