Aug 13, 2010

Review: Consume Less, Create More

consume-less-create-more.png Almost every Friday I review books I’ve either purchased or found for free around the internet. Each was read for a variety of reasons, and if I’ve found the information share-able, I’m doing so in this way.

This week, I’m reviewing Consume Less, Create More by Brett Oblack of Step 1 Minimalist.

When I made the discovery that minimalist living could help me achieve my goals faster, easier, and with better results, I was in. For me, it made sense almost instantly – have less stuff, focus more on what’s important.

For many creative people however, minimalism seems either unattainable or unwanted. Part of the creative life is surrounding oneself with papers, paints, music and movies, yes?

Brett would argue no – and in compelling prose explains how a minimalist lifestyle can aide creatives in producing not only more, but better.

This book is all about permission – permission to create, to see oneself as an artist, and to forge ahead in a world that no longer honors only the top 1%, but is beginning to recognize greatness in anyone willing to step up and say they are doing something worth looking at.

We live in a time when truly anyone can live well based on their passions, no matter how quirky or “childish” they may seem. Look at me, for example. I write a blog about knitting for charity, and doing so with the smallest amount of knitting supplies possible, and I’m growing a following daily and seeing some revenue come in thanks to pattern sales and affiliate links.

No longer for business blogs, the idea of earning a living online through multiple income streams is becoming relevant to artists of all types – photographers, writers, painters, musicians, movie-makers and more.

In part one of his book, Brett touches on the idea of consuming less. For those who have read extensively on minimalism, this will feel like a bit of a re-hash, although Brett consistently points back to the idea that consuming less is an act of creativity itself – creatively looking at the world and your surroundings based on what you need, not what you want.

It’s in part two that Brett’s ideas for creatives truly begin to shine. Beginning with a definition of art by Seth Godin, Brett dives deep into what it means to create more, create better, and create with minimalism in mind.
Art is defined in three parts: 1. It is made by a human being. 2. It is created to have an impact, to change someone else. 3. It is a gift of something special.
Brett is constantly encouraging creatives to dream. “Dream and dream big. Write down some outlandish and terrifyingly huge goals and push yourself to see them come true.” At the heart of creating more? Focus, practice and capture.

 Brett reminds us that we need laser-beam sharp focus with our art – don’t be the jack-of-all-trades, and instead focus in as small as possible and carve out your unique gift. He reminds us that even the masters practice for hours – Yo Yo Ma still spends hours on cello scales, for example.

And finally, we cannot continue to create new art without a way to capture our ideas – whether you use a pen and paper or a computer, write it down for God’s sake!

Brett packs a punch with Consume Less, Create More. I have four typed pages of notes, reminders, quotes and ideas thanks to his writing, and I’m excitedly adding this e-book to my “read often, read thoroughly” file.

If you’re interested in getting your hands on a copy, Brett’s got it available for a mere $14.95 – well worth every penny!

No comments:

Post a Comment