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How Art Can Make You Happy

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Why is art magical? How can it make us happy? How Art Can Make You Happy offers the keys to unlocking a rich and rewarding source of joy in life. This easy, breezy handbook is full of insight that will help regular people begin a more inspiring and less stressful relationship with art. With tips on how to visit museums, how to talk about art at cocktail parties, and how to Why is art magical? How can it make us happy? How Art Can Make You Happy offers the keys to unlocking a rich and rewarding source of joy in life. This easy, breezy handbook is full of insight that will help regular people begin a more inspiring and less stressful relationship with art. With tips on how to visit museums, how to talk about art at cocktail parties, and how to let art wake you up to the world around you, this little guide makes it possible for anyone to fall in love with art, whether for the first time or all over again.


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Why is art magical? How can it make us happy? How Art Can Make You Happy offers the keys to unlocking a rich and rewarding source of joy in life. This easy, breezy handbook is full of insight that will help regular people begin a more inspiring and less stressful relationship with art. With tips on how to visit museums, how to talk about art at cocktail parties, and how to Why is art magical? How can it make us happy? How Art Can Make You Happy offers the keys to unlocking a rich and rewarding source of joy in life. This easy, breezy handbook is full of insight that will help regular people begin a more inspiring and less stressful relationship with art. With tips on how to visit museums, how to talk about art at cocktail parties, and how to let art wake you up to the world around you, this little guide makes it possible for anyone to fall in love with art, whether for the first time or all over again.

30 review for How Art Can Make You Happy

  1. 4 out of 5

    Homeschoolmama

    This little book arrived a short time ago- I won it as part of Early Reviewers for Librarything. What a delightful little book. I'm not sure I'd title it How Art Can Make You Happy , b/c I see it mostly as a little guide about how to incorporate art in your every day life. Payne talks about scheduling time to visit museums, to create your own art, to check out art books from the library and look through them, or just to go outdoors and observe nature. I love her approach here- her stance is cle This little book arrived a short time ago- I won it as part of Early Reviewers for Librarything. What a delightful little book. I'm not sure I'd title it How Art Can Make You Happy , b/c I see it mostly as a little guide about how to incorporate art in your every day life. Payne talks about scheduling time to visit museums, to create your own art, to check out art books from the library and look through them, or just to go outdoors and observe nature. I love her approach here- her stance is clear- anyone and everyone can create and appreciate art. I also like her section on empathy- how art can introduce you, can challenge you to think of other people's perspectives, and how it can stir up imagination, not just to create art but to reflect in deep ways- it can stir up wonder in our minds, thinking about people in the past and how they viewed life. I loved the little appendix too at the end, where she includes a time line chart of historical periods and their corresponding art style. Perhaps the one thing I would change about this book is the layout. For a book about art, it has surprisingly few colors in it. It's all in yellow, gray and white. And the font was a bit small. Otherwise, it's great little book and can be easily read in one sitting. This great little book is for everyone, especially people who think they know very little about art or feel too busy for art appreciation.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Marlo Johnson

    This book is brilliant. At first I was a bit thrown off by the informal writing style, but it is so effective in serving the book's purpose that it's actually kind of genius; Bridget Watson Payne's voice is that of an insightful, comforting, and hilarious friend that knows just what to say to make you feel soothed and inspired. (I hope she writes a thousand books because I want to come to her with all my problems) In this case, her words casually yet powerfully subvert everything that kind of su This book is brilliant. At first I was a bit thrown off by the informal writing style, but it is so effective in serving the book's purpose that it's actually kind of genius; Bridget Watson Payne's voice is that of an insightful, comforting, and hilarious friend that knows just what to say to make you feel soothed and inspired. (I hope she writes a thousand books because I want to come to her with all my problems) In this case, her words casually yet powerfully subvert everything that kind of sucks about the culture around art and get straight to what is actually important—experiencing the magic of art. I'd recommend this book for anyone who wants to spend less time fretting about the details of the art world—like what work is cool or important, how to buy the right art, how to walk into a fancy gallery even if you feel like you don't belong, and so on—and more time simply being moved by art. A quick, easy, and delightful read, full of great advice.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Brian Durance

    "One of the greatest properties of art is that it's not for anything. It's not there to make you feel better. Indeed, it may unsettle you, make you feel worse. But it will almost always make you feel. And, if you let it, it will almost always make you see. And seeing is what it's all about." - Bridget Watson Payne "One of the greatest properties of art is that it's not for anything. It's not there to make you feel better. Indeed, it may unsettle you, make you feel worse. But it will almost always make you feel. And, if you let it, it will almost always make you see. And seeing is what it's all about." - Bridget Watson Payne

  4. 4 out of 5

    Jessie Drew

    Woke up at 2:30am from vivid dreams. Previous 2 days I had been depressed, thinking of how I haven’t made things in years. How looking at contemporary art sometimes makes me feel worse for not having done much myself. So tonight, when I woke up at 2:30am from vivid dreams, I picked up this book from my bookshelf and read the whole thing. Reading it was like having an articulate conversation with myself that was well organized, compassionate, direct and simple. Simple as in, “let the guilt and ba Woke up at 2:30am from vivid dreams. Previous 2 days I had been depressed, thinking of how I haven’t made things in years. How looking at contemporary art sometimes makes me feel worse for not having done much myself. So tonight, when I woke up at 2:30am from vivid dreams, I picked up this book from my bookshelf and read the whole thing. Reading it was like having an articulate conversation with myself that was well organized, compassionate, direct and simple. Simple as in, “let the guilt and bad feelings go and keep it moving”, all said in an understanding and factual manner. All said so that we can get back to giving art a chance to make us happy. Highly recommend this book for everyone.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    This adorable, quick little volume done in bright yellow is filled with quotable quotes. The "What is art" section is wonderful. I could read a whole book delving into these ideas of empathy and art. The "Make your own art" section is brief but fun. Teachers might find the middle sections helpful; "How to find art you like" "How to talk about art", "How to visit art galleries," "let's talk about Museums". I found them helpful in talking to my 15 year old who is "not so into art." But I walked aw This adorable, quick little volume done in bright yellow is filled with quotable quotes. The "What is art" section is wonderful. I could read a whole book delving into these ideas of empathy and art. The "Make your own art" section is brief but fun. Teachers might find the middle sections helpful; "How to find art you like" "How to talk about art", "How to visit art galleries," "let's talk about Museums". I found them helpful in talking to my 15 year old who is "not so into art." But I walked away with the impression that there are, apparently, hosts of people out there with art complexes, biting their nails about how they should appreciate art but don't or don't know how to. . .and voila, this book. I guess something about the tone bothered me.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jess

    I had high hopes for this book - the blurb sounded interesting, and exactly what I was looking for - but the content was thin and basic. It felt more like a blog series turned into a book than a true book based on research or meaningful action items.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Anmol

    A short but a fun read, and yes art does make you happy.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Marissa

    You know, it's short and sweet and I hope if you're feeling even the slightest bit intimidated or intrigued by art you'll check it out. You know, it's short and sweet and I hope if you're feeling even the slightest bit intimidated or intrigued by art you'll check it out.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Evelyn

    A charming essay for those who love art presented in the form of a book. However, it is marred by its presentation ... yellow ink on gray pages and gray ink on yellow pages and text in small print which at times makes it difficult to read the book, and its lack of illustrations to drive home the author’s points to the audience to whom she supposedly directed this work, those who are intimidated by and/or scared of art museums and galleries. One cannot assume that the reader is familiar with the n A charming essay for those who love art presented in the form of a book. However, it is marred by its presentation ... yellow ink on gray pages and gray ink on yellow pages and text in small print which at times makes it difficult to read the book, and its lack of illustrations to drive home the author’s points to the audience to whom she supposedly directed this work, those who are intimidated by and/or scared of art museums and galleries. One cannot assume that the reader is familiar with the names and/or works of the artists whose names are dropped in this book designed to encourage people who are not knowledgeable about art or who are intimidated by it and those who visit museums and galleries to do so and enjoy the art that s/he sees. Therefore, illustrations of the referenced artists works would be a great way to show that the author recognizes that some people are not knowledgeable about art or its history, and help them overcome their fears about visiting venues where they may view it. The failure to include them as well as a list of resources from which readers can obtain further information such as museum websites risks adding this to the shelves of books that one may argue look down upon people due to their education and background rather than helping them to self-educate and uplift themselves. Therefore, this book rates 2.5 stars.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Tara

    Well, the only reason it took me so long to read this book is that many an evening I sat down to open it on my living room sofa, which doesn't have the best lighting due to the seeming American fascination for dim yellow lit interiors, and couldn't really make out the words which are printed in a small, grey hairline font on bright yellow paper or in yellow on shiny silver paper, which, although pleasing to the eye aesthetically, simultaneously give the eye extra work to do. I got more out of th Well, the only reason it took me so long to read this book is that many an evening I sat down to open it on my living room sofa, which doesn't have the best lighting due to the seeming American fascination for dim yellow lit interiors, and couldn't really make out the words which are printed in a small, grey hairline font on bright yellow paper or in yellow on shiny silver paper, which, although pleasing to the eye aesthetically, simultaneously give the eye extra work to do. I got more out of the first half than the second, the overall information not going into much depth. perhaps me buying this book was unnecessary since I already got a more thorough understanding and food for thought from Alain de Botton's Art as Therapy. Overall, the general manifesto of giving yourself permission to learn more about what you like, enjoy it un-selfconsciously, and not beat yourself up about the rest is of course a moto to live by beyond art. Or, you could say, its the art of living.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Krol

    Fun little read with some nice parts. I specially liked the test to find what kind of art you might be into and I found the instructions on how to dress like an art snob amusing. On the flip side, I expected it to be more insigtful on the psychological effects art can have on us. Rather than explaining how art can make you happy, this book is a sort of basic manual on how to start naviganting museums, art galleries, etc. Plus, I found the book's generally condescending, poor-little-reader-let-me Fun little read with some nice parts. I specially liked the test to find what kind of art you might be into and I found the instructions on how to dress like an art snob amusing. On the flip side, I expected it to be more insigtful on the psychological effects art can have on us. Rather than explaining how art can make you happy, this book is a sort of basic manual on how to start naviganting museums, art galleries, etc. Plus, I found the book's generally condescending, poor-little-reader-let-me-enlight-you tone quite off-putting.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    The format is cute but the yellow on silver print was hard to read. The whole thing was going for a vibe I just didn't quite catch. Silly? For children? Whimsical? Tongue in cheek? It really says to wear a black shirt with your worst jeans and the most expensive thing you own to go to a gallery. If you think that advice is helpful, then maybe this is for you. I think by the title I thought this was going to be backed by a little more science and thought provoking. It would have been better to ju The format is cute but the yellow on silver print was hard to read. The whole thing was going for a vibe I just didn't quite catch. Silly? For children? Whimsical? Tongue in cheek? It really says to wear a black shirt with your worst jeans and the most expensive thing you own to go to a gallery. If you think that advice is helpful, then maybe this is for you. I think by the title I thought this was going to be backed by a little more science and thought provoking. It would have been better to just fill the book with art centric quotes. This was just...odd.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    I adored this little book! The author succinctly talks about what viewing or learning about art does to your mind and body, and that its purpose is to make us FEEL. We may not always like what we see, but that's not the point. She reiterates that art is for EVERYone - you don't need to be extremely knowledgeable in regards to artists or art history in order to enjoy art and peruse museums. Great book! Go enjoy some art! I adored this little book! The author succinctly talks about what viewing or learning about art does to your mind and body, and that its purpose is to make us FEEL. We may not always like what we see, but that's not the point. She reiterates that art is for EVERYone - you don't need to be extremely knowledgeable in regards to artists or art history in order to enjoy art and peruse museums. Great book! Go enjoy some art!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Gabrielle

    Everything about this little book, from the color palette to the warm, welcoming writing style made me smile throughout the whole thing! The comforting buttery yellow and silver pages are full of advice, tips, and ideas to carry with you as you explore the art world. Encouraging without becoming pushy, I think seasoned gallery-goers and newbies alike can glean something useful and practical from this book: forget all the pretense and just let art make you HAPPY!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Carole Ross

    This book is brillant. It was given to me by a very good friend. She knew that I loved art and crafts and making things. I really got into it and understood why I was attracted to art in general. This book does what it says on this cover. Art really makes you happy. For me it changed my life and it makes me realise how to appreaciate beauty in everyday life. And I discovered that I really love painting !

  16. 5 out of 5

    Lea

    This is a fun little book with artful wisdom. Maybe a better title would have been incorporating Art into your life. There’s more of a focus on “Capital A” art and not on just finding art anywhere. But it has great tips of it you want to discover artists and art in a more formal setting. I didn’t check the publication date but it seems like a section on what’s available online would have been noteworthy.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Ulfbear

    Cute little book that cuts through pretension to help anyone interested in art learn more about art in general, and how to hone their personal preferences. Great quotes, and interesting takes on just what it is about art (any art that moves us in any way) that adds joy and quality to our lives. I really enjoyed the sections, the brevity, the honesty, and the humor.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Katey Lovell

    This short book for anyone wishing to connect (or reconnect) with art isn't ground-breaking in any sense, but does remind the reader that art is for everyone, connects us all and that there are no right or wrongs when it comes to what you like. For all its simplicity, it has encouraged me to delve deeper to discover what floats my arty farty boat. This short book for anyone wishing to connect (or reconnect) with art isn't ground-breaking in any sense, but does remind the reader that art is for everyone, connects us all and that there are no right or wrongs when it comes to what you like. For all its simplicity, it has encouraged me to delve deeper to discover what floats my arty farty boat.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Megan Quirk

    I LOVED this book! A quick, witty read with lots of fun tips on how to enjoy all the art in the world around us. It's also almost entirely yellow & rose gold so it feels like it was designed just for me. I LOVED this book! A quick, witty read with lots of fun tips on how to enjoy all the art in the world around us. It's also almost entirely yellow & rose gold so it feels like it was designed just for me.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Patrick

    This lovely little book isn’t about Art Appreciation, so much as it’s about how to - and why you should - make space for art in your life. It is engagingly designed and written in a friendly voice. Enjoyable, and a quick read at just over 100 pages.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn Hanson

    Thumbs up & cheers for this little 100 page quick read, filled with good quotes, advice & perspectives. Of course, Bridget Watson Payne was 'preaching to the choir' with this reader, but her thoughts on the value of Art in life held a special sweetness. 👍🏽🎉🎉 Thumbs up & cheers for this little 100 page quick read, filled with good quotes, advice & perspectives. Of course, Bridget Watson Payne was 'preaching to the choir' with this reader, but her thoughts on the value of Art in life held a special sweetness. 👍🏽🎉🎉

  22. 5 out of 5

    Carolee Wheeler

    Bite-sized encouragement that reminded me of why I even bother to exist.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jenny

    Lots of great information on making art more a part of your life, all wrapped up in a tiny book. Art really is magic.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Lara

    "Art is magical." "...the cultivation of empathy is our true and proper human work... art is a wellspring of empathy." "Art is magical." "...the cultivation of empathy is our true and proper human work... art is a wellspring of empathy."

  25. 5 out of 5

    Amirali Zangiabadi

    Very short easy read and nice design for a book. But the content doesn't go deep into an art subject. Very short easy read and nice design for a book. But the content doesn't go deep into an art subject.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Mirtha Dominguez

    Lots of art ideas, how to get into art and find art.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Olivier R.

    Great, quick read for any potential, or even current, art lover.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Andy Cyca

    Exactly what it says on the tin. Short read, but gives quite some to think about for us not used to art.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Bianca Woods

    Such a charming, optimistic view on how to have art bring you joy.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Meena Habibulla

    Guide to life, as well as art.

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