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Create Your Life Book: Mixed-Media Art Projects for Expanding Creativity and Encouraging Personal Growth Paperback – December 19, 2017
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From the Publisher
What Is Life Book?
Life Book was first born in 2011 as a yearlong, online mixed-media art course with a personal development and healing focus. I created it to help people grow both creatively and personally through a wide variety of artistic and personal explorations. It has always been my deepest wish to help people find more self-love and self-worth so that we may collectively feel better and do better—for ourselves, our families, our friends, and the world.
Each week during the Life Book course, students receive uplifting and inspiring mixed-media lessons exploring topics such as self-love, the inner critic, creative block, and transforming limiting beliefs. Each year, between sixteen and twenty-two contributing guest teachers share their creative techniques as well as their insights on a healing theme. The pages created throughout the course end up bound into one big, beautiful book by the end of the year: A Life Book. This book serves as a keepsake and honoring of the journey the person has gone through. Thousands of Life Books have been created all over the world since it all started...
Project 4: Following the Light
Engage in Meditative Painting.
Contributing Artist Alena Hennessy.
In the painting shown opposite, I explored expressing light in abstract and symbolic ways. Not only did I create layers of paint to show the elusive and ever-changing qualities of light, but I also added actual gold leaf, which adds a highly reflective quality to the works. I was also interested in creating works with the intentional energy of “I am.” In other words, what lies at our true essence? Invoking a feeling of the mystery and the depth of our existence is of much interest to me, as is the perpetual changing nature of reality. The delicate leaf forms in the square painting are representative of the fragility of existence. To me, in the end, they create a feeling of celebration and gratitude that every day is indeed a gift.
Project 5: 'No One Alive . . . Is Youer Than You!'
Embrace & Love Your Inner Quirky Bird.
Something that helps me cultivate happiness and contentment in life is being less judgmental and more accepting of myself, including my more unusual and quirky personality traits. We’re often taught that we’re not good enough and told we must change things about ourselves to be acceptable to others. I personally think this is harmful to people’s self-worth and self-esteem. I’m no longer interested in pursuing some sort of elusive definition of perfection, and I have decided to embrace all my quirky and weird personality traits! I’ll tell you, it’s a huge relief, and it brings freedom to be at peace with yourself. So, instead of feeling ashamed of the fact that we love to sing in the shower, we wear bright purple clothing, we talk to ourselves, or we are Star Wars geeks, I encourage you to embrace all your quirky traits by embodying them in one of my signature Quirky Birds.
Project 13: Empathy Affirmation Feather
Self-Forgiveness Helps You Heal.
For me, a big part of healing and personal growth is letting go of guilt, shame, and self-judgment. For this project, I’d like to work on an issue you judge yourself for and find difficult to let go. For example, you could use, “I shouted at my children” or “I lied to a close friend.” As before, try to choose an issue that does not have too much of an emotional charge for you, just so you can gently learn to understand the process first. You may wonder why forgiving yourself for acts that have possibly been upsetting or harmful to others is a good idea. Shouldn’t we feel guilty, bad, or terrible about ourselves if we’ve done harm one way or another? I personally don’t think so. I know, it’s a daring statement, right?
Let me explain. Hanging on to shame and guilt, while understandable, is not helpful, noble, or redeeming. It only serves to darken you, your life, and the people and beings in your life. Blaming and judging the self will stifle and imprison you. It stops you from growing and becoming a better person. You have a much better chance at changing unwanted behavior if you can let go of guilt and shame (forgiving the self) than if you hold on to the harsh inner judgments many of us walk around with. This isn’t intended to justify behaving badly. This is an effective method of helping you heal from deeper pain and preventing you from behaving badly next time you’re in a similar situation.
About the Author
Tamara Laporte is a celebrated mixed-media artist and art teacher who has been running her own creative business, willowing.org, since late 2008. Since then she has become a creative catalyst for thousands of artists. Her work, which can be described as “mixed-media folk art meets magical realism,” ranges from whimsical children’s illustrations to more stylised fantasy art. Symbolism and layering play a big part in her work, and her paintings often contain healing themes, uplifting messages, and inspirational poetry. Tamara believes that the act of creating art can be a gateway into healing and personal growth. Her art classes often contain an element of self-development as well as learning art techniques. She is deeply devoted to helping people get in touch with their creative fire, and works tirelessly to bring uplifting, nourishing, creative, and empowering content to her amazing tribe of thousands. Her work and articles have been published in several art magazines and books and she has been interviewed on several radio programs. She runs a variety of popular art classes on her ning network, which has more than 24,500 members and grows by 150-200 mixed-media enthusiasts each month. She lives in Devon, UK.
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Top customer reviews
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I have been taking LifeBook with Tam since 2012 when she first started her LifeBook workshop. If you have been on the fence about taking an online workshop or class, I highly highly recommend taking the LifeBook course for any artist whether you are brand new to mixed media or have been doing mixed media for a while. But this review is about the book now isn’t it?!?
This book is awesome from cover to cover with lots of beautiful color, beautiful artwork and easy to follow tutorials of some of Tam’s best works, along with projects from some other wonderful mixed media artists.... Mystele Kirkeeng, Ivy Newport, Effy Wild, Andrea Gomall, Alena Hennessy, and Roxanne Coble. (All of these artists have participated in the LifeBook course over the years) Tam takes you on a wonderful journey of self-love, self-discovery, self-acceptance, and healing through meditation, art and creativity. I love that she touches on supplies she loves use and what supplies will be used throughout the book, but doesn’t overwhelm you or whack you over the head with them.
There are lots of step by step photos in the tutorials which will be especially helpful for those who are new to mixed media. For those who have taken any of Tam’s classes will have seen many of the projects she does throughout the book. That said, even if you have taken Tam’s classes, this book is definitely a must have for your art arsenal!!
This book will not disappoint!!!! I would definitely recommend it, and I’m even going to buy this book for a few of my mixed media friends!!!
I would’ve given this 5 stars, but I am mildly put off with some of the new agey type rhetoric,BUT this is a simply gorgeous and inspiring art book. It would make for a fantastic table book if it came in hardcover, which I would totally buy!
Beyond all of the great detailed photographs, Tamara has many project tutorials for the reader to follow along with and take inspiration from. She also has some ideas and input from other fellow artists inside the book which is awesome (I love to see creative women supporting each other!)
I am so inspired to begin my new Life Book for 2018! If you are a fan of Suzi Blu, SARK, or Jane Davenport, you will absolutely adore this book! It's too pretty for the bookshelf!