Book review | Show your work


*May contain spoilers*

Today I’ll be introducing another topic: book reviews. If you don’t know already I love to read, if I like the book I usually read it in hours and if it’s a collection I can stay up all night devouring the whole story. Lately I’ve been collecting a lot of books about the creative business, design, illustration and similar topics so expect little reviews about each one of them.

Last week I finished reading “Show Your Work” from Austin Kleon (he is also the author of “Steal Like An Artist”). In addition to being very portable due to its size and having layouts and graphics very pleasing to the eye, this book is a must read for anyone involved in the creative process. It’s direct, simple and doesn’t sugar coat the truth while showing you 10 ways to share your creativity and get discovered. If you’re a designer, illustrator or a photographer, this is an excellent read to add to your bookshelf.

“But human beings are interested in other human beings and what other beings do. People really do want to see how the sausage gets made.”

As I went through it, I started realizing how simple things can really get you out there. There’s a whole chapter talking about how nowadays people are more interested in your process rather than seeing only the final piece. Instagram and blogs are a great way to connect with your audience letting them see inside your “messy” process. It teaches you how to embrace what you like and that guilty pleasures don’t exist. We all love things that other people don’t and those are the things that makes us unique.

“In my opinion, the most ordinary things, the most common and familiar, if we could see them in their true light, would turn out to be the grandest miracles…and the most marvelous examples.” – Michael de Montaig

“All it takes to uncover hidden gems is a clear eye, an open mind, and a willingness to search for inspiration in places other people aren’t willing or able to go.”

Around chapter 7 there was a sub chapter that really stuck with me. It’s called “the vampire test”, and no, it’s not a quiz where you find what vampire movie identifies with you. To explain in a simple way I’ll use the words of Derek Sivers: “Whatever excites you, go do it. Whatever drains you, stop doing it”. The test works with jobs, hobbies, places but also includes people. It’s as simple as that and has helped me a lot.

It’s definitely a book I recommend anyone reading it, it’s a light read if you’re not so keen on books but one thing is for sure, this book will inspire and make you feel empowered.

Note: I believe this book has been translated into many languages and from what I’ve seen here, Korean, Dutch, and Russian are on the list.

Have you read this book? Or perhaps the “Steal Like An Artist”? I would love to know your thoughts/opinions on it.


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