Life's Big Canvas - unique gifts from Chloe McGenn

I was thinking earlier about what I need to blog about on here, and my goodness, I have a lot of rubbish that spills out of my head.

However, after looking at Katie's site, I decided I should recommend some books. Goodness knows why, cause I don't really read books, I just sort of look at the pictures, and then go and scribble in a sketchbook.

Then I remember. If it wasn't for Keri Smith, I probably wouldn't have started drawing again.

Last year, when I was getting over my nervous breakdown and trying to decide what to do next, I went to the library to see Claudia. I felt immediately at home in that college anyway, but I also took a book home called 'Living Out Loud'. I went home, and read it, and started following what she said to the letter.

The most important thing which I did from it was to transform the room in our house which had hitherto been my in-laws bedroom, or the study, or even the playroom - I built a tent in it, and suddenly it was my studio.

The book also suggested taking a sketchbook and writing down sounds as you drew what you could see, and recommended ways to be relaxed. I started going on sense shopping trips (I had no money for actual shopping trips) ie just collecting little things I found on the floor, or little noises, or smells, or snippets of conversation.

I love looking back over these old sketchbooks. I encourage you, even if you're not creative in anyway at all, to go out and get Keri's book, and start being kinder to yourself. It's less than a tenner, which, let's face it, is less than a bottle of wine and a bar of chocolate, and will last a lot longer. I'm still benefiting from it a year later.

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