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Mess: The Manual of Accidents and Mistakes Paperback – 4 Nov 2010

4.7 out of 5 stars 49 customer reviews

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£8.99 FREE Delivery in the UK on orders with at least £10 of books. In stock. Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

  • Mess: The Manual of Accidents and Mistakes
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  • This Is Not A Book
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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin (4 Nov. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846144477
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846144479
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.4 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 24,202 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Keri Smith is an author/illustrator turned guerilla artist. She is the author of several bestselling books about creativity including How to be an Explorer of the World -the Portable Life/Art Museum,( 2008 Perigee), Wreck this Journal (2007 Perigee). Her newest book, This is Not a Book will be released fall 2009 by Penguin Books. She is the author of the popular weblog the Wish Jar which attracts over 10,000 readers daily, and writes on occasion for a variety of magazines (including How Magazine). Keri spends her days playing with her husband and son, and divides her time between upstate New York, and the countryside of Canada.

As a free lance illustrator she has worked for a wide variety of clientsworldwide. Most recently Random House, The Washington Post, The New York Times, Ford Motor Co., the Boston Globe, Galison/Mudpuppy Press, and Hallmark. In the last few years she has given lectures and workshops on the topic of "living creatively" for the How Design Conference, the OntarioGraphic Artist's Assocation, UC Davis, and schools across North America.She has been featured in How, Step by Step, Print, Bust, Wired and many more.

Product Description

About the Author

Keri Smith is a best-selling author, illustrator, and thinker. Her books include Wreck this Journal, This is Not a Book, How to Be an Explorer of the World, Mess, Finish This Book, The Pocket Scavenger, Everything Is Connected, The Imaginary World of . . . as well as Wreck This App, This is Not an App, and the Pocket Scavenger app.


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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By dmcnabb TOP 500 REVIEWER on 17 Feb. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I purchased this book along with Wreck this Journal on recommendation of my psychology student friend who suggested it for me as I do suffer with minor obsessive compulsive disorder in the sense that I need things to be organized and perfect.
This book is very similar to Wreck this Journal, as a matter of fact some of the pages are identical, the front of the book is more about general destruction, while the latter parts of the book are more about exploration of textures, materials, different paints, colours, techniques and also tells the user to reference people, places, things etc. There is a lot of general doodling, but usually with some sort of instruction - ie photo of landscape with instructions to draw a storm of some description. I am not looking forward to burying it for 3 days! I must say! I will probably do that when I am done with it.
I love that this book is a bit more educational to artistic techniques, people etc. The beginning of the book speaks about an interview with a Dutch Sailor summing up the work of Bas Jan Ader referencing a piece called "Broken Fall" which shows a man bouncing up and down swinging on a branch over a creek. The sailor references that "moment of transcendence when you leave everything behind and leap into the unknown". I feel this book encapsulates that statement very well. There is a lot of experimentation and tasks that do not have a particularly obvious outcome, and while not dangerous, the book challenges your views on what art or perfection is. I have done a few pages and in describing them verbally it sounds like I am destroying a perfectly good book, but actually when I look at pages there are little bits and pieces on some pages I love, some I hate.
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Format: Paperback
Ok i have only just started filling this book, the first page is scary as it takes a little while to get used to being allowed to create mess! On the second page i poured coffee on the book from a height which was surprisingly fun, once you get relax and get creative this becomes a good outlet for stress and just to feel a bit silly, i do feel like i am doing something naughty and silly when making so much mess, but its definitely a good thing! Good for anyone who likes breaking the rules! Only minor flaw is that i would prefer bigger pages for making mess as the book is quite small! But there are a lot of pages and so many different ways of making mess so its not too bad!
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This is a fun and genius book. I bought for my daughter for Christmas and she had kicked it, thrown it up trees, splodged it and buried it, among many other things. She has so enjoyed it. Highly recommend.
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My daughter loves this book. Has kept her entertained during flights on holiday. Fun. Pleased I bought it for her.
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Format: Paperback
I bought this from being in a creative slump and needed something to do. After looking at all of them I got this one and so far done two of the pages! It is very good for boredom when I'm home alone without the kids, or even getting them in on the action with sticky fingers.

One is cover the page in glue and the other dropping any coloured liquid from a rather fun height. Best do some outside though as it can get VERY messy. There are a lot of other activities to do as well.

I have already recommended it to my friends for when they're in a creative slump (and quite a few are!) And they've said they'll look into it. I want the other three now!
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By julie on 13 Feb. 2014
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Just completely fabulous I have issues making things that ihave purchased look like a mess but this book has pushed me into parts of my mind hat I didn't think that I would be able to access and go over!
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really love this whole series of books, works wonderfully in its own right but I use the ideas lots in projects with school / community groups and its such an inspiring set of springboards that can be further developed
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fantastic for big and little kids . good for stretching the imagination beyond boundaries- one of the challenges was to bury the book in the garden - ours was there for 3 days !
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