Steal like an artist

image alt text

Steal Like an Artist


The Book presents 10 strategies to spark creativity and embrace the artistic mindset. The book is not exclusively for artists. the principles and advice can be applied to anyone seeking to tap into their creativity, regardless of their field or profession.

1. Steal like an artist

Nothing is really original, our brains copy what we sense from the same world we live in, either from nature or from other people, every piece of creative work is inspired by something that already exists.

Most of the time when people call something original, they actually don’t know the references or original sources involved in creating it in the first place. Nothing comes from nowhere and every new thing is inspired by things that came before it.

Of course, this is not an invitation to steal someone's work and pass it under your name, that is not the point, this is about being open to taking bits and pieces from their work and adding on it, improving it, and making it better.

2. Start right now

Don’t wait till you figure out who you are to get started, you should start right now. Fake it till you make it means pretend to be making something until you actually make something, it means to start doing the work you want to be doing.

3. Write the book you want to read

Draw the art you want to see, start the business you want to run, play the music you want to hear, write the books you want to read, build the products you wish to use, and do the work you want to see done. — Austin Kleon

4. Use your hands

Work that only comes from the head isn't any good... You need to find a way to bring your body into your work... If we start going through the motions, if we strum a guitar, or shuffle sticky notes around a conference table, or start kneading clay, the motion kickstarts our brain into thinking.

5. Side projects & Hobbies are important

It’s healthy to have multiple different projects at the same time, side projects are your playground, where you try new things and learn new skills, I know a couple of software products most people use every day were actually the product of an employee side project. plus focusing on one project for a long period of time can limit your thoughts and ideas, and give you a break from working on different things. In addition to the ability to have multiple passions that we can work on in different projects/hobbies. We can even combine different passions which makes our work even more unique.

However, you should not switch focus too often not to distract yourself or affect the quality of your good work.

6. Do good work and share it

If there was a secret formula for becoming known, I would give it to you. But there's only one not-so-secret formula that I know: Do good work and share it with people… People love it when you give your secrets away, and sometimes, if you're smart about it, they'll reward you by buying the things you're selling.

In the early stages enjoy the focus time, and work on your product or piece of art, or your book, you are not attracting attention or distractions yet which is good. Just focus on doing the good work, When you get it to a ready state, now is the best time to share your output with people.

7. Geography is obsolete

You don't have to live anywhere other than the place you are to start connecting with the world you want to be in.

The Internet had made geography no longer a constraint, you can find people online who are interested in the same things as you, and you can connect and share your ideas and work and get attraction from anywhere.

It is also equally important to leave your home for a break from time to time, travel, and have new experiences. Travel makes the world look new, our brain works harder

8. Keep your day job

It would probably take you some time to start making a living from doing the work you love, and till you do you probably need to pay for bills, make connections and work on your skills.

9. Get a calender and a logbook

Be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work.— Gustave Flaubert

Being boring and having a daily routine is the only way you can get work done. Kleon suggests always keeping a calender and a logbook in your creative journey, those can help you focus and be consistent in working on your craft and increase your growth speed.

Get a calendar

  • Get a wall calendar that shows the entire year
  • Break your work into daily chunks
  • Every day when you finish your goal draw a big fat X on the day
  • Do not break the chain

Get a logbook

Reflect and Document: Your logbook serves as a space for reflection and documentation. By regularly writing in your logbook, you can document your progress, observations, and personal growth. It does not have to be detailed like a journal, but just high-level details of what you do each day. It becomes a record of your creative journey and serves as a source of inspiration and self-reflection.

10. Creativity is subtraction

Don’t make excuses for not having enough resources, there are always ways to do more with less, like starting a company with no capital or doing photography with your smartphone, and you can always find creative hacks that would make things work. Creativity is about working with whatever resources you have before you and creating something beautiful out of them.

Creativity block

Kleon suggests that creativity block can be caused by limitless possibilities, and as counterintuitive as it might seem, setting constraints on yourself can actually free you and help you overcome the creativity block.

Nothing is more paralyzing than the idea of limitless possibilities. The best way to get over creative block is to simply place some constraints on yourself. In the end, creativity isn’t just the things we choose to put in, it’s the things we choose to leave out, so choose wisely and have fun.

Thanks for reading ❤️