Book Club

3 May

Book Club was last week. We were finishing up the book Mixed-media Self-portraits by Cate Coulacos Prato. However, I was the only person who was there for book club. 😦  I know that happens sometimes. People have other plans and commitments, or just forget.

The last section of the book is called Reveal Yourself, and is more of a hands-on section for self-portraits. There are lots of ideas of how to use what you’ve learned about yourself to create various styles of art. I especially loved the Journal Dolls as they are meant to represent various parts of ourselves. We are not one-dimensional, but rather we have a vast assortment of roles that we play in our lives. From our role in the family (mother, daughter, sister) to our career to our hobbies to our secret dreams and desires. Each segment can be an individual doll (or other work of art).

There are ideas about documenting a particular journey or a single year (or month or week or day) to capture who you were at a particular time and place. After all, we are always changing and growing. How wonderful to document a special time or event (wedding, vacation, travel) that really means a lot to you.

There are some great ideas for using masks, miscellaneous objects, shrines, photos, etc to help create your self-portrait. Again, the book offers lots of samples from a variety of artists and how they chose to interpret the theme. There is no right or wrong way to create a self-portrait.

I’ve used this book over and over again. While I haven’t done much in the way of self-portraits (they are still a little scary to do), I very much enjoy seeing what my options might be. The book has a lot of great photos, inspiration, quotes, and ideas.

Have you read the book? What did you think of it? Have you done any of the exercises? Please share. We love to hear the stories.


Our next book we will be reading is Ignore Everybody and 39 other keys to creativity by Hugh MacLeod. I enjoy his artwork and I think the book will prove to be entertaining as well.

Ignore Everybody by Hugh MacLeod

Ignore Everybody by Hugh MacLeod


Our next book club meeting is May 23rd at 1pm at Blue Twig Studio. If you can’t make it in person, just follow along and comment on the blog post.


Let Your Inner Artist Out To Play

Blue Twig Studio

5039 N Academy Blvd – Colorado Springs, CO 80918


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4 Responses to “Book Club”

  1. Sonja Milojevic May 4, 2014 at 11:18 am #

    I wish there were books like this one in the shops here. It’s nice to at least read about them on your blog. Thanks for sharing!


    • Deb Prewitt May 4, 2014 at 11:54 am #

      Your welcome. I forget sometimes that everyone doesn’t have easy access to the books/products I talk about here.


  2. Lynnita Knoch May 8, 2014 at 11:22 pm #

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book. There are so many great ideas for self-portraits – and many do not require a facial view!! I think that’s one of the scary parts of self-portraits. I know I’ll be using it for a reference in the future. I’ve posted more of my thoughts on my blog at

    I did a self-portrait in a quilt and a digital collage of self-portraits (both are posted on my blog.) I still want to try the transparency in the bathroom exercise-my first try flopped. I think the journal for a specific event or year sounds like interesting. The book has definitely inspired me to make self-portraits periodically as a way to document where I’m at in my life at the time and to not be so afraid of self-portraits.

    The title of the next book sounds very interesting! Sounds like a fun read!

    Sonja, can you get access to the book electronically? I’ve taken to checking out books from a digital library through my local library. I know Kindle (through Amazon) has started a digital lending library. I haven’t tried this one, though, to know how it works or what kind of books they have available. It’s just a thought.


    • Deb Prewitt May 9, 2014 at 8:00 am #

      I agree with your ideas about doing faces being scary, but being able to do something else that isn’t a face seems somehow easier. I’m not sure why that is, but it seems to be universal. I’ve done the mirror exercise a couple of times. I ended up doing several at the same time, as I was sure the first one I did wasn’t right. But no, they all turned out quite similar so it was right. Ha Ha Ha

      I’ll go check out your blog post about it too. 🙂

      E-books are definitely a way to go for some people. Sonja, I can always try to find you a copy of whatever we are reading and send it to you too.


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