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Ivy Exec Reviews Essential Reading for Creative Professionals

ivy exec reviews

Reading is essential to being successful not just in business but also in life. A good book can teach you new skills, add value to your life, exercise your brain, and help you think about things differently. Microsoft CEO Bill Gates reads a new book every week. Warren Buffett reportedly spends five to six hours a day reading five different newspapers. Oprah Winfrey calls reading “her personal path to freedom.”

Whether you’re reading for fun or to learn more about a specific topic or idea, reading is crucial for business leaders. It can prevent stress, reduce depression, increase confidence, build empathy, and improve your decision-making skills.

One of the most challenging aspects of working in the creative industry is feeling inspired to produce your best work. It’s not easy to unleash your creative potential. But a good book can help.

Ivy Exec Reviews 7 Books on Working in a Creative Field

Joyful: The Surprising Power of Ordinary Things to Create Extraordinary Happiness

By Ingrid Fetell Lee

Ivy Exec Reviews

[Image: aestheticsofjoy.com]

“Joyful” is one of the best books we’ve found on creating joy in your life and work. It encourages readers to take a closer look at what makes them smile—the orange glow of a sunset, a flower blooming in spring, a colorful burst of confetti. And then author Fetell Lee draws on insights from neuroscience and psychology to explain why certain settings or situations make us feel the way we do, and how we can harness that information to create a happier existence.

Who is this book for?

This book is great for designers and communicators who want to unpack what and how to spread joy through their work. In the end, you’ll walk away with the ten aesthetics of joy, as well as ideas on how to practice mindfulness in your creative process.

Mismatch: How Inclusion Shapes Design

By Kat Holmes

ivy exec reviews[Image: MIT Press]

The designer’s goal, Holmes argues, is to create solutions that work for everyone. Citing products that lean toward certain demographics—such as a computer mouse that works best for right-handed people—Holmes illustrates the limitations on our market today. “Mismatch” is the counterargument to “one size fits all.” It explains how to use inclusive design methods that improve the user experience. Inclusivity isn’t just about feeling good—the key takeaway is to use a structured design approach as a catalyst for innovation and improving a company’s bottom line.

Who is this book for?

Professionals from any field—from product development to architecture—will benefit from reading “Mismatch.” This book provides insight into consumers and meeting their needs, which is valuable for decision-makers at every level.

The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity

By Julia Cameron

Ivy Exec reviews[Image: juliacameronlive]

This book has been around for decades, but its influence hasn’t waned. “The Artist’s Way” is a must-read for anyone who wants to stretch their creative reach. It’s powerful and offers a straightforward, 12-week agenda focused on rediscovering your creative self. Every week has a different theme, such as safety, identity, power, possibility, connection, strength, and faith. One of the best features of the book is the “artist dates,” which are weekly exercises to help stimulate your creativity.

Who is this book for?

This book is for creative professionals who are feeling a little lost in their current job, project, or passion. You have to be willing to take an in-depth look at who you are and what you are experiencing. As Cameron writes in the book’s opening, “In working with this book, remember that “The Artist’s Way” is a spiral path. You will circle through some issues over and over, each time at a different level. There is no such thing as being done with an artistic life. Frustrations and rewards exist at all levels on the path. Our aim here is to find the trail, establish our footing, and begin the climb.”

Manage Your Day-to-Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus, & Sharpen Your Creative Mind

By Jocelyn K. Glei and Scott Belsky

[Image: Indie Bound]

Be honest: How often do you feel overworked? Probably more than you’d like. Creativity requires you to be on top of your game—and have the space that’s needed to let your mind roam freely. That’s hard to do when you’re tired, overwhelmed, and scrambling to meet deadlines. “Manage Your Day-to-Day” includes advice from 20 highly successful creative professionals. Think of the book as a toolkit for being creative, no matter how busy you are.

Who is this book for?

The information is concise and easy-to-grasp. Quick takeaways make the book approachable for everyone—even if you’re crunched for time.

The Creativity Code: Art and Innovation in the Age of AI

By Marcus Du Sautoy

ivy exec reviews[Image: Harvard University Press]

How will artificial intelligence disrupt the creative industry? “The Creativity Code” forecasts what to expect from AI in the future and explains how machine learning already affects the market today. Author Marcus Du Sautoy challenges readers to question how they define art, and if there’s a difference between work that’s created by a computer algorithm instead of an artist. It’s an interesting philosophical read that uses real-life examples to build a case.

Who is this book for?

If you’re a creative in the fast-paced technology industry, or you regularly deal with clients, managers, or project leads where you have to defend the creative process, this book is for you. It provides illuminating insight into what it means to be human—and, no matter how advanced computers become, they will never be able to replicate the “human code” of emotional experience.

Unlocking Creativity: How to Solve Any Problem and Make the Best Decisions by Shifting Creative Mindsets

By Michael A. Roberto

ivy exec reviews[Image: Wiley]

In “Unlocking Creativity,” Roberto parses the creative process and explains how to build a culture of innovation and experimentation. It demonstrates compelling arguments for why organizations need to value and reward creativity—and how to convince decision-makers to invest in those practices. The book offers tangible advice on how to tear down barriers that stall innovation, and it can be a great resource to call on when review time rolls around.

Who is this book for?

This book is perfect for any creative professional who struggles to find recognition in their current role. You could even give this as a gift to your boss if you want to send a bold message.

The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life

By Twyla Tharp

ivy exec reviews[Image: Simon & Schuster]

Written by Twyla Tharp, a dancer, choreographer, and entrepreneur, the book offers practical exercises for sparking creativity during a dry spell. By focusing on creativity as a routine task or ritual, Tharp demystifies inspiration to help readers tap into their hidden potential. By following 32 simple exercises, you’ll enjoy a fresh perspective and new creative insights after reading this book.

Who is this book for?

If you’re stuck in a rut, this book will help, regardless of your creative background. It explains that creativity is not a gift from the muses, but something everyone has to work to achieve day in and day out.


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About the Author

Kelly Vo is a full-time freelance writer specializing in digital marketing, personal development, and content creation. A social media and brand development expert, you can find Kelly at http://kevowriting.com/ where she helps businesses and executives develop their authentic voice.