crafty, design, illustration, Inspire

Risky Reading

Bigpicturestuff-reading-creativity and risk books

Some books, magazines and websites that encouraged us to take risk and move forward in the way of our dreams. One of the things that the two of us love more than anything is learning from people. Whether it’s from another’s story or experiences, or listening to a podcast interview, there are so many different ways to discover and learn Do you ever have those moments where you read something and it feels like it was just for you? That’s what we got from these resources and it challenged us to keep pushing and exploring!

Even though it is a little hard these days to make the time to enjoy a good read, giving yourselves permission to discover new things will undoubtedly enrich your life. All these were either given by friends, found online or bought by Val, so don’t stop yourself from getting into one of these recommendations! Let us know if you’ve read some of these and if you have any other recommendations you can offer, we would love to hear them!

Bigpicturestuff-reading-sherylsandberg-lean in

Lean In
Sheryl Sandberg

“Women need to shift from thinking “I’m not ready to do that” to thinking “I want to do that—and I’ll learn by doing it.”

Sheryl Sandberg writes an honest and true account of women and the workplace, she details the differences between male and females in their leadership styles, which stem from biological, social and emotional reasons and encourages ladies to continuously step forward! Sharing facts such as, women will not go for a position they are not obviously qualified for while a greater percentage men will apply despite not being obviously qualified, this book not only opened my eyes to what it’s like for women in the industry, it really challenged my perceptions of myself. Being quite naturally shy, this had me questioning, why did I struggle to speak up in group meetings at work? Ultimately I realised that I did have a place at the table and owed it to myself to “lean in” and let my voice be heard. 


Big Magic
Elizabeth Gilbert

“A creative life is an amplified life. It’s a bigger life, a happier life, an expanded life, and a hell of a lot more interesting life. Living in this manner—continually and stubbornly bringing forth the jewels that are hidden within you—is a fine art, in and of itself.”

In beautiful prose and gorgeous analogies Elizabeth Gilbert encourages us to move towards a creative life. Covering topics from inspiration, failure, courage, fear and risk, she navigates us through the beginnings of the creative act to the final created product. Highly recommended for every creative or those looking to move towards having more creativity in their life. For me; this book really confirmed that everyone has “hidden jewels” that are waiting to be uncovered and put back into the world. Also that; courage is not the rejection of fear, but rather it is the choice to keep moving forward and not letting fear control our choices or actions. Beautiful beautiful read! 

Bigpicturestuff-reading-simon sinek-start with why

Start with Why
How great leaders inspire everyone to take action
Simon Sinek

“Regardless of WHAT we do in our lives, our WHY—our driving purpose, cause or belief—never changes.”

After reading this book, you begin to question everything that every organisation you’ve ever encountered has ever done. Simon Sinek brings into question the way that companies and organisations work with their people and work towards achieving their goals. Looking at marketing, storytelling, inspiration, goals and management, he creates a compelling argument that while it’s okay to tell people how and what you do, what’s most important is to tell them WHY you do it. For me, there was one particular story that he told about Walt and Roy Disney. That; although they had a very different way of doing things, as siblings they had strong shared values. Which meant that they would have a great and lasting partnership. Made me think of a few siblings that I know! 😉

And here’s a sneaky secret. If you’re pressed for time, or you tend to take in information better audibly, these wonderful authors have done great TED talks! Just have a google and you’re sure to find something to listen to that can give you a great overview of their books. 


Some magazine titles that we have read this past year that has encouraged us to take risk and to pave out our own stories!

Dumbo Feather – Conversations with Extraordinary people

A publication that comes out of Melbourne, this magazine is one that you must have on your shelf. Every issue consists of a range of different interviews. The people in the pages are often delightful, interesting, curious and always inspiring. Stories of lawyers helping people on death row, fathers making camps that teach young boys to become men. Profiling people from artisans to scientists, this magazine enriches your soul and evokes a sense of the wonder at the marvel of humanity.

The Collective

A recent addition to the Australian magazine scene but now a regular on the newstands. The Collective covers a range of different topics and interests but the main theme that runs through The Collective pages is one of entrepreneurship. We can’t get enough of this magazine, and after putting it down, we just feel like staring up a company! The magazine can be found in most places so check it out next time you see it!

Darling Magazine

We’ve had a bit of a crush on Darling Magazine’s instagram account for a while now. So when I manage to pick one up while I was in America, I was not disappointed! This magazine is a magazine for women that’s been curated and made in a way that is nothing like a generic women’s magazine. It features beautiful photography and thought provoking content. And did I mention that none of the images in the publication have been photoshopped? So amazing! 


And finally, I’ll finish off with this particularly good website that Val and I adore, it’s called The Great Discontent. Run by a husband and wife team (who’s been interviewed by Debbie Millman, you can listen to here) the website features interviews with various people from creative fields, writers, artists, designers, musicians. The interviews are thought provoking (are you creatively satisfied?) but more than that, the people they interview are so fascinating and so generous with their responses, The Great Discontent never fails to encourage Val and I to keep pressing on with our creative endeavours and to not be afraid of taking great risks. Really amazing stuff, and something that you can squeeze into your morning commute.

Love v&v

Illustrations by Vess!

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