Book Swoon | Wired to Create: Unraveling the Mysteries of the Creative Mind by Scott Barry Kaufman and Carolyn Gregoire

Book Swoon | Wired to Create: Unraveling the Mysteries of the Creative Mind by Scott Barry Kaufman and Carolyn Gregoire

Lately I’ve been trying to figure out how my creative process works ― namely why I wake up some mornings with boundless creative energy, and others I wonder if I’ll ever make anything again.  The more I read about studies on creativity, the more I find that these polarized feelings aren’t unusual. Also it seems like the more I know about the creative mind, the less it intimidates me.  So, I’m in the process of reading every book I can find on creativity and I’ll post my reviews here on the blog.  Join me if you want to unravel your own creativity or just learn more about how creative brains work!

In Wired to Create psychologist Scott Barry Kaufman and creativity writer Carolyn Gregoire joined forces to unravel the mysteries of creative minds from the viewpoint of science and history.  They explain how writers, artists, and makers throughout history (like Frida Kahlo, Pablo Picasso, Michael Jackson, and Thomas Edison) struggled and adapted to their sometimes tumultuous creative minds.

Each chapter explores one of the ten habits and personality traits of highly creative people:

  1. imaginative play

  2. passion

  3. daydreaming

  4. solitude

  5. intuition

  6. openness to experience

  7. mindfulness

  8. sensitivity

  9. turning adversity into advantage

  10. thinking differently

If you’ve ever wondered why you seem to have a messy, unorganized mind, or why you get your best ideas when you’re washing dishes or driving to work (and no ideas come when you’re at your easel/typewriter/studio), then you will love this book.

Some of the most important takeaways from this book are that:

  • artists need time to play and daydream.  I always look for ways to make every task “productive”, and feel guilty when I just take time to do nothing.  This book helps explain how doing nothing IS work for creatives, and in fact it’s the most important work we’ll ever do.

  • creativity is a choice, not an innate personality trait.  The more we practice creative tasks, the more easily our brains can reach a creative state.

  • solitude is essential for creative minds to function properly.  If you don’t allow yourself to have some solitude, the ideas may never come.  Even when we feel guilty telling our friends/family/spouses that we need a few hours alone, we must take that time for the sake of our creativity.

This book has definitely changed my view of my own creative process, and I would recommend it to any creative mind who wants to dig deeper into their creative process!

Combining Lettering and Illustration in Procreate

In this class you’ll learn all the steps for combining lettering and illustration to create compositions that both tell a story and are visually interesting!

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Illustrating with Layered Texture & Color

Learn how to use layered texture and color to add depth and visual interest to your illustrations.  We’ll look at how to create overall textures, how to use texture to create highlights and shading, and how to use single and multi colored texture to bring out warm and cool tones in your illustrations.

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Design a Pattern Collection on Your iPad

Learn how to design a pattern collection on your iPad from start to finish.  I’ll show you options for making your repeat elements in both Procreate and Affinity designer, so you can choose which option works best for you!

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70s Lettering

Learn how to create 70s style hand lettering and decoration from start to finish.  We’ll cover everything you need to know to add the kind of bold color, drastic variation, and playful decorations that were so popular in the 70s and are now popping up all over in the design world on stationary, clothing, home decor.

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Limited Color Palette Illustration in Procreate

Learn how to create limited color illustrations and palettes on your iPad in Procreate.  We’ll cover every step of the process from building new palettes to creating illustrations that are ideal for limited palettes.

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Ink Illustration Techniques in Procreate

In this class, you’ll learn three different ways to use ink lines and dots to add shadow, highlights, and depth to your work.  We’ll look at tons of tips and tricks for hatching, crosshatching, and stippling, and talk about how to add bold color to your linework to add variation and contrast that makes your work stand out online and in print.