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The Creative License: Giving Yourself Permission to be the Artist You Truly Are Paperback – 8 Jun 2006

45 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion (8 Jun. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401307922
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401307929
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 81,385 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Synopsis

Using drawing as an example, offers an approach to reconnecting with one's own creative energies that can ultimately lead to self-expression and creativeness without fear.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

103 of 103 people found the following review helpful By CabbagePatch on 2 Nov. 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am so grateful for this book. I did a textile degree many years ago, and somehow, during it, the love I had for drawing was squeezed out of me by tutors pulling me this way and that. I have missed drawing more and more, yet every time I have tried to begin again, those whining tutor voices invaded my head, I would get upset and give up.

Danny Gregory is the friendly, gentle, encouraging voice I have needed to replace those negative voices. Since taking the plunge to buy the book (spurred on by another reviewer who said he was finally drawing again every day) I have drawn every day for 2 weeks.....and I am enjoying it.All the angst and frustration that blocked me before has gone, and I am back in touch with the peace and enjoyment it used to give me when I was younger.

This is a delightfully friendly book, packed with drawings (which I wasn't expecting)and is not trying to make you a brilliant artist, just someone who is creatively engaged for your own pleasure. He focusses alot on journalling, rather than making works of art to share and impress, and that suits me right now, it takes the pressure off while you find your feet.

If you want the techniques of drawing, you need another book; some of the exercises he uses are basically from Betty Edwards - drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, and if you are already well motivated, then you may need a book like that. He admits himself that the book will not take you through all the skills needed for drawing, and makes really good recommendations for other books. This book is more about the joy of it, about getting you to see the place drawing can have in your life, how it helps you to engage at another level with your life and the people and things around you.

If you want to draw and don't think you can, or can and don't, or have some block, like I did, then this is definitely the book for you.
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156 of 158 people found the following review helpful By Gyri Nørbech on 28 May 2006
Format: Paperback
As a writer I've got lots of "how to write" books. Stephen King's "On Writing" is the best of those, giving an honest and personal insight into what works for him. I find Danny Gregory's book similar in it's approch, even if it has suggestion of tasks and is more of a How-to book than King's. It is informed with the same love, or need of the craft, and humane attitude. His instructions are easy to understand, and his attitude is never less than encouraging. Learning is a prosess he's got a very thourough understanding of.

If the proof of the reading is in the doing: Since I started reading it, I've begun re-writing a manuscript I've put off for ages, started a blog, started keeping a drawing journal and lost all shame of the whimsical photos I take. And I've only got as far as chapter 5 yet!

In short: an inspirational, friendly, fun and relaxed book. If you don't get a creative shot in the arm from it, enjoying Danny Gregory's own drawings is well worth the price!
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190 of 193 people found the following review helpful By jakeone VINE VOICE on 6 May 2007
Format: Paperback
What makes this book so extraordinary? It addresses the three greatest obstacles facing any aspiring artist: 1) "I can't draw/paint/sculpt etc.", 2) "What do I draw/paint/sculpt?" and 3) "Why do I want/need to draw/paint/sculpt?". This book tackles all these issues with great intelligence and simplicity. (In fact, by answering 1 and 2, you'll find 3 takes care of itself).

As a beginner I always felt that artists were born, not made. That you were either born creative and artistically gifted, or not. The author quickly proves this is not the case and - incredibly - gets you to prove it to yourself through a series of simple exercises from the very beginning.

I admire the fact that here is an author that has not lost sight of the true value of art - to express deep emotion and meaning - in short, the artist's "truth". It's not a "how-to" book (although there is a chapter that will improve anyone's drawing ability within minutes) but a guide to helping the "ordinary" man/woman in the street express themselves authentically, individually, artistically and to begin making sense of their own world and their own lives. That's an amazing achievement.

The result for me is that I now draw constantly - rarely does an hour pass without me sketching something. I cook more adventurous meals; I'm learning about graphic design; I write stories and articles; I listen to more diverse music (and find myself liking stuff I never thought I would); I've turned my hand at typography, photography - even new languages. In short, I've awoken to the world I live in and have connected to a more authentic me. Life has become far more rewarding and interesting.

One word of advice however. The book does not hold concrete answers.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By J. A. Coshall on 9 Mar. 2009
Format: Paperback
This book is fantastic I trained as a fine artist got all my skills then went back to work with children and have hardly done anything 'arty' since so I bought this book on a whim to kick start me. The exercises and familiar excuses are all there but I am working through and finding my confidence building up nicely. So anyone out there lost give it a go.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Chris Shaw on 22 Oct. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the book for you if you can get over your inhibitions and insecurities and just go with Danny's flow. Anyone who doesn't like Danny Gregory's books has no soul or playful nature. Don't ignore all the lessons in his books because you think it's not cool to draw or write or follow any other kind of atistic venture, because believe me it is sooooh cool to take the advice given here and run with it, taking it in your own direction, producing art work of your own and not having to worry about what other people think of it, or beat yourself over the head with it because you don't think it's any good. As Danny said "there's no such thing as a bad drawing" You just have to enjoy the process of doing it and catch the bug which is easy to do if you keep an open mind and laugh along with Mr Gregory's infectious instructions. This book is absolutely fantastic as were his others and i would recomend it to anyone with a sense of fun and an ability to look at life with a kind and compassionate eye.
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