I don’t read as much as I should. Sometimes it’s easier to browse through your library or create a virtual wish list, than it is to choose one specific book and read it. I find sifting through all the fiction and pseudo-science quite hard work, but I’ve been reading more recently and I’m planning on doing a lot more of it. Most probably as I’ve found a genre with a few very interesting and inspiring titles.
So, however niche my choices may be, I’m sharing my top six books
for painting inspiration. They might not seem to be related, but these books
are a constant stream of motivation, “wow” moments and fun facts you can amaze
your friends with (I did this today in fact). Whether it’s being awed by the
power of light or simply musing on other worlds, books are a source of
knowledge like no other.
Should you be inspired to read any (or none) of these, let me know in the comments, or let me know what you think my shelves are missing.
- 15 Million Degrees
Professor Lucie Green
I’ll start with the one I’m currently reading. Though I’m only halfway through this book is already providing me with a greater understanding of our very own star, the Sun, and just how complex, unlikely-yet-nowhere-near-impossible, and beautiful it is. There are some areas of this book that (almost) lose me in a world of photons, neutrons and hydrogen ions, but the narration is light and you can be forgiven for scratching your head and having to consult your physics A level a couple of times.
- If Dogs Could Talk
From giant nuclear fission reactions in the heart of stars to problem-solving dogs? Yes, that’s how my mind works. I find dogs a massive source of inspiration, and the longer I own them (my Springer is nearing her ninth year) the more they surprise and fascinate me. Dogs can pick up far more subtle clues than you ever give them credit, and they never, ever stop learning. Next time your dog’s asleep, pay attention to the position it’s asleep in, or how it leans on you, or what toy it brings you. You’ll soon realise your dog has a far more intricate routine than you thought.
- Life on Earth
I haven’t read this at all yet, and in a way, I don’t need to. This book is essentially the re-telling of Attenborough’s ground-breaking Life on Earth series, which I have consumed visually countless times. Life on Earth recounts the natural history of our planet in spectacular encounters of wonder and curiosity. I can’t wait to re-immerse myself in Attenborough’s world through printed words. Just what I need when I’m craving nature, so this was a lucky find in a local bookshop.
- Forces of Nature
Professor Brian Cox and Andrew Cohen
Another accompanying book to one of my favourite TV presenters and series, this book is an intriguing look at our planet through the forces that interact on it. From tumbling towers of Spaniards influenced by the pull of gravity, to the unique formation of every snowflake and their breath-taking intricacy, all because of a particle of dust.
- The World Until Yesterday
Previously the domain of anthropologists and scientists, today everyone seems to lament for the simpler way of life, the lessons we can learn from more primitive, traditional societies. Through his experiences in New Guinea, Jared Diamond takes us on a journey through conflict, childcare and cargo. Some things are shocking, some are weird, but so many of them make sense. And perhaps we’re all right: we aren’t suited to living in this concrete jungle after all.