Austin Kleon author of Steal Like An Artist talks about how one should steel from others because there is nothing in this world is original, one way or another, things will be the same, the artist will change one or two things but the core idea will remain the same.
You can take my website as an example, you can find 100s of a website that writes book summaries and I’m also doing the same but like everyone else, I will have a different thought process but at the end of the day, we all are talking about the same book but in a different way.
So why you’re reading from my website because you want to hear my thought, you’re connected with me whether it could be through YouTube, Twitter, or Instagram or you’re just here because you show this URL on google search results.
“What a good artist understands is that nothing comes from nowhere. All creative work builds on what came before. Nothing is completely original.” – Austin Kleon
“You don’t want to look like your heroes, you want to see like your heroes.” – Austin Kleon
“When people give you advice, they’re really just talking to themselves in the past.” – Austin Kleon
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Steal Like An Artist Book Summary
The Steal Like An Artist is one of those books which everyone should read because it talks about work, and how you can processor yourself by doing the things you love. The author has shared 10 Big Ideas which will open your eyes and make you realize the reality of the artist…
10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative
- Steal Like an Artist.
- Don’t Wait Until You Know Who You Are to Get Started.
- Write the Book You Want to Read.
- Use Your Hands.
- Side Projects and Hobbies Are Important.
- The Secret: Do Good Work and Share It with People.
- Geography Is No Longer Our Master.
- Be Nice. (The World Is a Small Town.)
- Be Boring. (It’s the Only Way to Get Work Done.)
- Creativity Is Subtraction.
By the way, the book is very small, you can finish it in only 1 hour. The book has a small-small thing that will make you wonder about the things you believe in.
So let me share with your some of the lessons I have learned from the book.
Nothing is Orignal
“What is originality? Undetected plagiarism.” – William Ralph Inge
The writer Jonathan Lethem has said that when people call something “original,” nine out of ten times they just don’t know the references or the original sources involved.
What a good artist understands is that nothing comes from nowhere. All creative work builds on what came before. Nothing is completely original. It’s right there in the Bible: “There is nothing new under the sun.” (Ecclesiastes 1:9)
Some people find this idea depressing, but it fills me with hope. As the French writer, André Gide put it, “Everything that needs to be said has already been saying. But, since no one was listening, everything must be said again.”
If we’re free from the burden of trying to be completely original, we can stop trying to make something out of nothing, and we can embrace influence instead of running away from it.
Copy your heroes
“I have stolen all of these moves from all these great players. I just try to do them proud, the guys who came before, because I learned so much from them. It’s all in the name of the game. It’s a lot bigger than me.”- Kobe Bryant
A wonderful flaw about human beings is that we’re incapable of making perfect copies. Our failure to copy our heroes is where we discover where our own thing lives. That is how we evolve.
Copy your heroes, and examine where you fall short. What’s in there that makes you different? That’s what you should amplify and transform into your own work. In the end, merely imitating your heroes is not flattering them. Transforming their work into something of your own is how you flatter them. Adding something to the world that only you can add.
Don’t Throw Any of Yourself Away
“You can’t connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect them looking backward.” – Steve Jobs
If you have two or three real passions, don’t feel like you have to pick and choose between them. Don’t discard. Keep all your passions in your life.
It’s so important to have a hobby. A hobby is something creative that’s just for you. You don’t try to make money or get famous off it, you just do it because it makes you happy.
A hobby is something that gives but doesn’t take.
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Don’t throw any of yourself away. Don’t worry about a grand scheme or unified vision for your work. Don’t worry about unity-what unifies your work is the fact that you made it. One day, you’ll look back and it will all make sense.
You can take this website as an example, I don’t plan to make money out of it, I write these articles for myself. Whenever I feel I want to read certain books, I can just come back to my own articles and I will get that memory, feeling, the thoughts I had when I was writing the articles.
And just like everyone else, I take tons of notes when I read books, so what I’m doing is putting them on the internet on my server, so I have control over it.
Share What You Like
- Step 1: Wonder about something.
- Step 2: Invite others to wonder with you.
You should wonder at the things nobody else is wondering about. If everybody’s wondering about apples, go wonder about oranges. The more open you are about sharing your passions, the closer people will feel to your work. Artists aren’t magicians. There’s no penalty for revealing your secrets.
You don’t put yourself online only because you have something to say—you can put yourself online to find something to say. The Internet can be more than just a resting place to publish your finished ideas—it can also be an incubator for ideas that aren’t fully formed, a birthing center for developing work that you haven’t started yet.
A lot of artists worry that being online will cause them to make less work, but I’ve found that having a presence online is a kick in the pants.
Most websites and blogs are set up to show posts in reverse-chronological order—the latest post is the first post that visitors see, so you’re only as good as your last post.
Just in case, if you’re reading from bookiestalk for the first time, do let me know in the comment box…
I can go on and on because this is Book Summary and not the book itself, so I would highly recommend you to read Steal Like An Artist Book.
Again, whatever the author was talking about, I already knew it because I have read tons of books on business, and productivity and also, watched tons of videos too.
So yes, the book didn’t give me anything new but yes, it did refreshed my mind in a good way…
Images: Austin Kleon
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