The Creative Act: A Way of Being (Book Review with Quotes)

The Creative Act: A Way of Being (Book Review with Quotes)

The Creative Act: A Way of Being, book review

The is an absolutely wonderful book on creativity. I took my time and took loads of notes, which you can see photos of below.

Here are some of the highlights:

  • Artists are all translators for messages that the universe is broadcasting.
  • Be more spontaneous than analytical
  • Meet ordinary experiences with awe
  • Have no facade and no attachment to story
  • Preserve your childlike qualities
  • Art is the circulation of energetic ideas
  • The ability to look deeply is the root of creativity
  • The act of creation is a longing to transcend.
  • Art is a portal to an unseen world.
  • Look for what you notice that no one else sees.
  • Awareness needs constant refreshing.
  • Live your life in a constant state of openness to receiving.
  • We tend to think of artist’s work as the output. The real work of the artist is a way of being in the world.
  • There is always something new to notice and it is up to us to find it.
  • The people who choose to do art are often the most vulnerable.
  • Adversity is part of the process of making art.
  • Getting to create is a privilege.
  • You’re not playing to win, you’re playing to play.
  • All art is a work in progress.
  • Remove intention and all that is left is an ornamental shell.
  • Art is confrontation.
  • Approach your work with as few accepted rules, starting points, and limitations as possible.
  • For any rule you accept, it would be helpful to try the opposite.
  • Examine your methods and consider what the opposite would be.
  • Formulating an opinion is not listening. To listen impatiently is to hear nothing at all.  Listening is suspending disbelief. Listening without prejudice is how we grow.  Listening opens up possibilities.
  • Patience is accepting that the majority of the work we do is out of our control.
  • Tune into what enlivens us in the moment, instead of what we think ‘will work.’
  • Innocence brings forth innovation.
  • Act out of inate instinct, not learned behavior.
  • Value play above all else.
  • See the extraordinary in the seemingly mundane.
  • Inspiration is the immediate influence of the divine. Treat moments of inspiration with devotion.
  • Consider varying your inputs. Break habits. Look for differences. Notice connections. Find awe.
  • The only person you are ever competing against is yourself.
  • Discipline and freedom are not opposites, they are partners.
  • Believe you are good enough. Claim and accept that you have enough energy. Question suggestions of limitation.
  • If you know what you want to do and you do it, that is the work of a craftsman. If you begin with a question and use it to guide an adventure of discovery, that’s the work of an artist.
  • Failure is the information you need to get where you are going.
  • “The personal is universal.” Carl Rogers
  • The goal of art isn’t to attain perfection. The goal is to share who we are, and how we see the world.
  • Great art opens a conversation.
  • The best art divides the audience. If everyone likes it, you probably haven’t gone far enough. In the end, you are the only one who has to love it.
  • “Comparison is the thief of joy” Theodore Roosevelt
  • Living in discovery is at all times preferable to living through assumptions.
  • We are required to believe in something that doesn’t exist in order to allow it to come into being. Have faith in experimentation.
  • Even spontaneity gets better with patience.
  • Actively stretch your own point of view. Try to see beyond your filter. Curiosity doesn’t insist on a single way of doing things. When we are making things we love, our mission is accomplished.
  • The artist’s job is the work of doing and the work of being. This is why it is never done.
  • Art is far more powerful than our plans for it.

I loved The Creative Art: A Way of Being and I encourage you to read it. I give it an enthusiastic five stars. It will probably be the best thing I read this year and is destined to become a classic.





I work to amplify good wherever I find it. I love color, texture, beauty, great ideas, nature, metaphor, deliciousness, genuine spirituality, and exploring new territory. I encourage authenticity, nurture creativity, champion sustainability, promote peace, and hope to foster a new renaissance where we all are free to be our most fulfilled, multifaceted, and terrific selves. Read more here.

1 Comment

  1. Kate+Gibson+Oswald 4 weeks ago

    Thank you Polly! Going to get this book! I love the cover too…so simple and pure- oneness…

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