Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Book Review* - Kaleidoscope by Susan Simanatis

I bought this book, truthfully, because of it's name! Kaleidoscope, Ideas and Projects to Spark Creativity, by Suzanne Simanatis, did not disappoint. Although many of the techniques in the book are based on paper and collage, the appeal goes further as a source of inspiration. I only actually tried one of the projects (the artist trading cards, that I wrote about in a previous tutorial Tuesday entry for this blog,) but I often spend time paging through this book, reading sections at whim, and thinking about the many ideas and possibilities that spring to mind. As an inspiration for creative ideas, this book does it for me. As a source for actual projects, the scrapbookers, multi-media artists and collagers may find the book to their liking.

Each page of this book is filled with it's own collage of color, images and text, both inspirational and instructional. Some of the pages are a little hard to read - for example, small light-colored print on a dark page, but for the most part, this was not a big deal to me. If you need larger print or black print on a white page, then this book might be difficult for you to read.

One of the ideas I loved in this book is a section on page 58 titled a dream creative space, by Marney K. Makridakis (there are a number of different contributors that write the articles within the book) and starts out like this: " As with the creation of any piece of art, creating a dream creative space begins with having a vision. Of course, there will be wonderful twists and turns of spontaneous serendipity along the way. But knowing what you want is the key to having it." Then the reader is guided to develop a vision of the studio, examine beliefs related to the manifestation of the studio and finally, to pinpoint and integrate those essences. Nice.

The articles within the book are varied and focus on different aspects of the thought processes involved in any art form, such as composition, obstacles, memory books, art cards, mailing art to yourself, keeping the creative spirit alive, reflection and listening to your heart.

The book appeals to me. It is not a book you sit down and read cover to cover; rather you page through it in a spare moment, or when you need inspiration, and read whichever sections calls out your name at that moment.

This book is available from Amazon.com, new,as well as used from the Amazon resellers.

*The Book Review is a new feature of our blog and is scheduled to run every other Tuesday. Please leave comments and suggestions. You are invited to submit your own reviews of books - please contact Mimi, of A Thousand Dreams Designs, at mimifrawley@yahoo.com.

1 comment:

Julie said...

OK. Wow. Way to go, Mimi! Great review :)