Take a look at any of my scrapbook layouts and tell me whether I'm a person who likes things messy and free, or neat and constrained. Got your answer?
Now that we've established that I like things to be clean, organized, lined up, and placed just so, you can better understand how much I resisted, yet how much I NEEDED, this book:
(affiliate link here and below)
I received Mess, by Keri Smith, as a gift six or seven years ago. I loved the concept - it's a place to break the rules, explore textures and colors, let loose, and banish perfectionism, and thus grow as an artist. But the idea of trashing a book was so difficult for me that it literally took all this time for me to finally use it as intended. I FINALLY gave myself permission to do things I'd never dreamed of doing... like crumpling book pages and adding color to the creases with chalk-covered fingers.
Or dribbling paint into a book, then swiping the paint with a scrap of cardboard to smear the colors.
Or coloring in a book... and dripping water onto the page.
Or shaving crayons into a book and ironing the pages.
I'm about 1/3 of the way through Mess. I've torn, folded, smeared, dribbled, and scribbled. I've traced, splattered, doodled, glued, and sprinkled.
I have not created any masterpieces along the way. Far from it. But I've experimented and stretched and had a ton of fun doing so! Mess is the gift that the creative people in your life need, particularly the ones who need to let loose once in a while. Better yet, get them the boxed set of Keri Smith's most popular books. I can't wait to try them all.