Having spent most of this last year in a place of uncertainty with my career and what exactly I want to do next, I am drawn to articles, books, and advice on how to get through times like these. Although this article is about the design process and the Constructivist method of learning ("we are natural learners, constantly processing the world in order to create our own understanding"), it is also true for times of uncertainty. You research and plan as best you can, but then you always encounter a period of time where you're not certain how the future will unfold. As a designer, I've been part of this creative process my entire career — now I see how I can use this as a framework of understanding to apply to my career as a whole.
Purchase on Amazon (only place I could find it for sale online).
This novel is magical. In simple language (it was originally written in Swedish), the author paints scenes of a summer on a small island in the Gulf of Finland. There is a grandmother, old and ailing but kind, cranky, and still interested in small adventures, and her granddaughter, young, obstinate, and determined. The young girl's father is around too but only as the merest of supporting characters. There is no plot, simply the passage of time following these two characters through a hot summer in a setting teeming with nature. It's magical, real, philosophical, and wise.
Keep Going is the third book in Austin Kleon's series that started with Steal Like an Artist and was followed by Show Your Work! I love his style in general — handwriting, collages, blackout poems, great quotes — and this book is the best of the three IMHO. I originally got it from the library and then bought my own copy because I could tell that reading it once wasn't going to be enough. I'm at a new point in my creative life and career, and the messages of this book are just what I need to hear — about hope, perseverance, and art as a fun and meaningful part of your everyday life.
BONUS PODCAST LINK: A great conversation between Austin and Jonathan Fields on the Good Life Project podcast, talking about the book and about living creative lives.