All posts tagged books

  • Imagine: How Creativity Works (CHECK)

    I just finished the designer’s sweet heart book of the moment: Imagine: How Creativity Works by Jonah Lehrer. And if you couldn’t tell by all the sticky notes peeking out in this picture, I liked it quite a bit. Heaven knows I don’t need anything help being even more idealistic. But surprise, I read it anyway and am involuntarily inspired. ::jazz hands::

    From the point I initially heard about it on the99percent to the time I actually held the book in my hands, I wasn’t sure I wanted to read it. When it was first mentioned I was like yesallofthetimeplease—a book about the neurological process and trends of imagination?! On being creative? And as it was stewing on the back burner I kept hearing it mentioned more and more and became skeptical. I was starting to get jaded by all of the talks telling people to do this or that in order to A or B. A lot of anecdotes and designers in sharp outfits shrugging and saying emphatically “…and then it all just happened, for me. All of it.” I watched a lot of videos and read scads more articles and afterwards felt like “grit” and “creativity” were just new buzz words floating around the design community.

    After a brief hiatus I watched this video.

    Jonah Lehrer: The Origins of Creative Insight & Why You Need Grit from 99% on Vimeo.

    Alright, sold. I order the book that same day.

    It’s not a self-help book. It’s not a manual. Or, at least it didn’t feel like it to me. It was just a really enjoyable collection of studies and stories about creativity. In the same way that Oliver Sacks’ book Musicophilia isn’t a manual for being a musician (or, like his other books aren’t teaching you to think your spouse is a hat….). That isn’t to say you won’t be inspired by the ideas in the book and ruminate on the things you’ve read during your next project. While reading it, I kept writing to my creative friends (helllllloooo fellow humanity majors!) being like “Hey, this is you!” and considering my own creative process.

    I ate up the beginning chapters about insight & epiphanies with a ladle. Adored reading about the dynamics of Pixar, reflecting on the co-working space my office is in and lamenting over my wall-flower nature.

    I was especially moved by Lehrer’s description of WK12, NOOCA, and High Tech High. Things that Jacklynn loves = education. As someone who has always cherished going to school, it made me re-think about what my school was like. In these schools students focus on the creativity as a vocation. “Ideas have value.” Lehrer explains the supreme important of free play for toddlers, for being allowed to be curious and creative through out our childhood and adolescence, in fact. Nurturing exploration and imagination as much as we do athletes in way the encourages thoughtfulness as a skill just as much as we celebrate physical prowess. I was fortunate enough to always see my classes as a launching pad and was always able to extract to value in learning about “when a ship sailed somewhere,” err…at the very least I was just excited to learn about it as anything else.

    Thinking about it makes me restless. I know it’s absurd, but I want everyone to read the book and collectively start appreciating artistic pursuits. Being creative will lead to innovations in any field, sciences include, people!

    But I’m not going to try to summarize the book here, I will just recommend it to you.

  • 5: Books I want to read

    Not novels this time, books that I’ve heard that I should read because they’ll like, inspire me, or whatever.


    01. Outliers | Malcom Gladwell*

    02. Imagine: How Creativity Works | Jonah Lehrer

    03. Things I have learned in my life so far | Stefan Sagmeister

    04. Batman: Death by Design | Chip Kidd

    05. How to think like a great graphic designer | Debbie Millman.


    *Not completely design related

    For other books I want to read, check out my pinterest.




    On the Road > Jack Keroac > Audio-booked it during my road tripping. I expected to like it more than I did. Disappointing.
    A Confederacy of Dunces > John Kennedy Toole > I had started it before and it was pretty dense. Audio-booking it now and I love it. The reader is brilliant.
    The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test > Tom Wolfe > slowly but surely
    Guilliver’s Travels > Enjoying it, again, making slow progress


    Ho hey” > The Lumineers > Ever since their concert I’ve been seeing them everywhere!
    Flowers in her hair” > The Lumineers >The concert was really amazing.
    The gardner” > The Tallest Man on Earth > So I can stay the tallest man in your eyes. Best. Line. Ever.
    Prophet’s home town” > Eye & the Arrow > Great for road trips through Wyoming.


    Sleeping! Well! As a long-time bad sleeper, sleeping well makes me incredibly excited.
    I want to travel more.


    So much over-thinking.
    Paying more on my taxes.
    Manically freaking out about the future.
    Trying not to eat all of the time.


    Bon Iver/Feist concert at Red Rocks TONIGHT!
    Tedx Mile High Talks

    The return of the bright joy that is Sarah to the United States.


    The Avengers > Twice. It was a lot better than I thought it would be. You’ve done it again, Joss.

    This month went by very fast!


  • No, I haven’t done my taxes yet

    Right now I’m nursing a green-white tea blend bleary-eyed at my computer. I fight off illnesses with mass quantities of tea. It usually works. I think I’d be better right now if I hadn’t gone out today. Does that make it ok that I didn’t post anything on Friday?

    On Friday I was helping out with this event (I feel like I could have helped out more, but no one would give me things to do!) and I designed this poster. What do you think?

    It was a great turn out. And I think, yet another first, I didn’t feel like I was a painful wallflower at a party I didn’t really want to be at. I had people visit me and generally spend most of the time with three other lovely people. Most of which I met within the last two weeks…great right?!

    I spent most of the weekend reading. I officially have finished all three books in The Hunger Games. I’m not going to add any additional recommendations to the ones you’ve already heard. There was nothing extremely special about the books, but it was just a good story to absorb myself in.

    I now have a accumulated a backlog of actually exciting things I want to write about…I hope I get to them before they become irrelevant…

    Groggily, Jacklynn


  • 5: Sticky Notes

    My New Year’s resolution of reading a little bit every day has fallen a bit on the wayside, not because I’ve stop liking reading, but I’m having a lot of trouble getting into The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. It is well written, but the subject matter bores me. I feel as if  the book is more about the novelty of drugs rather than…a real story?  It reads to me more like creative journalism than a story to me and so it struggles to get my attention. A good book should surround you.

    Since getting my first magazine in the mail from Communication Arts and, in order to fill the reading void, I’ve been excitedly reading it instead. It makes me want to look up all the books or designers that they mention. So here are 5 post-it’s that are sticking out of my magazine right now for me to look up later:

    01. Marian Bantjes | Graphic designer

    02. Paul Shaw | typographer | “Flawed typefaces” article

    03. Just My Type by Simon Garfield

    04. Des Edmonds | British typographer

    05. Rotis typeface







    I have no idea what I should do to start picking up my room again.

    NOTE: Many of these is from the the article “Typographic Hat Lists: Tirades, Tantrums, and Truths” by Allan Haley


    Like paying the rent, I totally forgot to do this on Leap Day. Thought I’d kill two birds with one stone…happy Friday folks!



    Plainsong > Kent Haruf > Colorado author, fast read
    The Other Boleyn Girl > Philippa Gregory > Massive book, kind of like a 16th Century soap opera
    The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test > Tom Wolfe > Trying to finish this book as part of my resolution, but still not very into it.


    “The Stable Song” > Gregory Alan Isakov
    “Parrots in Tropical Trees” > Breathe Owl Breathe
    “Thirteen” > Big Star
    “American Dream” > Danielle At the Sandwich


    Buying cameras
    Pining over good graphic design
    Coconut coffee creamer


    So many traffic violations
    I am the worst at saving money
    Awkward moments, always.
    I need to update my website…


    Blaze Kings show was great
    Planning on going to the Denver Uke Fest
    Tickets to Bon Iver/Feist concert at Red Rocks? BOUGHT.
    Matt has made our living room so adorable


    The Beginners (so good!)
    (Part of) The Descendants (so boring!)
    Paper Moon (adorable, I recommend it)
    War Horse (better than I thought it would be)
    Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (per Sarah’s request, wildly ridiculous)


  • 5: Lists

    Lists of list, you’re in a time warp. Shortlist is a site that makes lists. Why didn’t I know about your earlier?


    01. The 50 Coolest books Ever.

    02. The “Oh s***” posters.

    03. Art Deco Superheros.

    04. 30 Coolest Films Ever.

    05. Surreal Moments on Film.





    Dune > Frank Herbert > Finally finished! And can dip my nerd hat a little lower
    On the Road > Jack Kerouac> Started, but I don’t like my kindle edition
    Plainsong > Kent Haruf > Just started


    Submarine Sountrack
    Patrick Dethlef & Friends
    The Dawes


    taking Sun Do Sul lessons
    Cooking meals & hosting


    Not being about to stay on budget for the life of me
    Getting two traffic violations. Both unnecessary and mean.
    Having to get a new drivers license


    Seeing my friends from Wyoming!
    Working on a web development project
    More visits! More hosting! More cooking!
    Reading has been phenomenal


    House Bunny (again, with Matt)


  • Off and running….

    I’m really liking this 2012 thing. Ever since I got back to from Laramie I have been off and running into the New Year, whether self-motivated or otherwise. Here I go, talking about and trying to write about it more interestingly:

    01. I am just beginning work on a new project with my boss that I am wildly excited about. I won’t go into much detail yet because part of me thinks it might be too good to be true, suffice to say that it’s a really worthy cause and that I am honored to be a part of it.

    02. Reading every day is wonderful. What has probably also help my productivity since I’ve gotten back is that Matt and I didn’t have internet for the first week, which lead to me reading all day. I am finally making progress on that book I’ve been trying to read for ages (Dune by Frank Herbert, a Matt recommendation). I know that eventually I’ll get enveloped in mindless activities and my reading will reduce down into only a few brief minutes a night, but I’m savoring it while I can. It makes me want to read all of the books. All of the books can be mine! I re-visited the 1001 Books to Read Before You Die list and was pleasantly surprised by the number of books I’ve read since the last time I looked at it. I’m hoping to take the lead while Carissa’s in China, but darn-it-all I got her a Kindle for Christmas!

    03. On Sunday I went to the Unitarian church with Matt because he had sad it was so amazing. It was like no other church that I’ve been to. It was really interesting there was so many things that I wanted to write down to learn more about later. Since it was the pre-Martin Luther King Jr. Day service, we talked about immigration injustice and complementarity, racial inequality.

    04. I then visited Susan to collect all the very sweet presents the Olezene team had gotten me from China. They were all so thoughtful!

    05. I’m going to watch a karate class at a dojo near my work to see if I should join. I used to do Tae Kwon Do when I was little and really want something to do during the winter times to make me hate myself less. Karate seemed like a good choice considering I couldn’t find any nearby Tae Kwon Do place.




    The Great Divorce > C.S. Lewis > meh


    Who loves the sun? > The Kinks
    Cherry Cherry Christmas > Neil Diamond > Come on, it was the holidays!




    Buying things for my apartment
    New Year’s resolutions, here I come!


    Eating yogurt. It always makes me feel bad because I know the yogurt is alive!
    Exercising, the lack of


    Seeing Katie & Sarah (visiting from Europe)!
    Christmas exchange, for realz
    Sharing young-coconut drinks with a fellow coconut-enthusiast


    Midnight in Paris
    Good Will Hunting
    The Darjeeling Limited (again)