Steal Like An Arist is a funny, slightly irreverent book for all creative types written by Austin Kleon. There are 10 very simple truths that every artist should take notice of and try to incorporate into their daily lives. For instance, #6 -THE SECRET – Do good work and share it with people. This is so simple and so important that I do believe it gets forgotten in the whole artspeak of galleries and critics, curators and collectors. You must do the work first. Talking about, thinking about or dreaming of someday writing that great novel or having a solo show of your fabulous new paintings does NOTHING for you. You must DO THE WORK. Not all work is good, and that is ok, but you must be able to tell the difference and only share the good stuff. Forget about the other, average work that you wouldn’t even give to your mother, throw that away. The last and final step is you must share the work. If you want to live in a cave and become a hermit, writing poetry with rocks and twigs, then more power to you. But if you want to be an artist or writer, you must share your work with the world. If you are looking for straightforward career advice for artists, you should read this book.
This book is a great little wake up call to artist’s to get real. One of my favorite pieces of advice is #8 Be Nice. Yes, you do need to become a professional and polite. Jerks and geniuses are plentiful in the art world and the dealers and curators don’t need to deal with jerks, they would much rather deal with a talented nice artist.