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BOOK :: Shooting with Soul by Alessandra Cave

Shooting with Soul
by Alessandra Cave
128 pages
ISBN: 978-1-59253-871-3
Review by Jenny Doh

Photo 1This book is SO Alessandra. Why? Because in the first chapter, it contains all the technical information you need to understand how to operate a camera. You know ... shutter speed, ISO, aperture. But it also contains a soulful and heartfelt point of view of a photographer who helps the reader understand not only the technicalities related to shooting photographs, but how to express oneself through the process.

I also really like how Alessandra doesn't discriminate amongst cameras. She acknowledges that the camera a person uses may not be the top of the line DSLR but perhaps a vintage instant camera, or a sporty point-and-shoot. Regardless of the shooting instrument, her photography exercises as presented in chapters 2 through 5 are sure to get photographers at all skill levels to pause, consider, observe, and shoot with soul. There is also a 6th chapter with resources and glossary that I think has been well edited with valuable information.

Bravo to Alessandra Cave!

Photo 2


BOOK :: Delight in the Art of Collage

Delight in the Art of Collage
by Lisa M. Pace
ISBN-13: 978-1440328534
North Light Books
128 Pages
Review by Jenny Doh

BookDelight in the art of Collage is the third book in a series from the delightful Lisa Pace. Like her other two books, Lisa gives of herself fully and sincerely as she explains why she loves collage and how she goes about making her projects. But don't let the word "collage" fool you. It's not just about paper glued to paper. Actually, it's that and a whole lot more.

Lisa organizes her content into four main chapters that tackle projects based on Textiles, Metal, Wax, Resin & Clay, and then finally Paper. I think what's most valuable about this book is that not only can you choose to recreate exactly the projects that Lisa presents them, you can also learn the methods of how to do something ... like the faux resin leaves for example, and use that knowledge to make a completely different project that you dream up on your own.



BOOK :: All Things Paper by Ann Martin

All Things Paper
by Ann Martin
ISBN-13: 978-080483669
Tuttle Publishing
112 Pages
Review by Jenny Doh

all things paper
I am completely inspired by All Things Paper—a book that offers truly inspiring and well-executed paper-based projects. There is really not a project in this book that doesn't fascinate me and make me want to create. Paper is the common denominator for all of these projects, which are categorized according to Home Decor, Fashion Accessories, Jewelry, and Correspondence. My favorite projects include the elegant Frameable Tree Card, the clever Phone Book Letter Holder, and the adorable Citrus Slice Coasters. If you're looking for a book with truly innovative paper-based projects, this book is for you.

Congratulations to Ann Martin on authoring this delightful book.

Find All Things Paper here.


BOOK :: Contemporary Jewelry in Perspective

Contemporary Jewelry in Perspective
by Damian Skinner
ISBN-13: 978-1454702771
Lark Crafts
264 pages
Review by Jenny Doh

Contemporary Jewlery in Perspective
Contemporary Jewlery in Perspective is a book that validates for me, that the desire to adorn ourselves with jewelry exists in all pockets of society. It is a book that takes you on a beautifully guided tour within each of these pockets where you discover the origins, nuances, and brilliance of diverse contemporary jewelry. Whether they are expensive pieces from high end boutiques, inexpensive pieces born out of the street culture, or crafty pieces from the DIY movement, contemporary jewelry is able to not only beautify the wearer, but at times make statements about current and past events for to see. The necklace, the ring, the bracelet, the brooch ... without saying a word, they can speak volumes.

For anyone who wants to delve into the rich history of contemporary jewlery, I recommend this book. It is well organized, well written, and contains photos of some of the most amazing pieces of contemporary jewelry that you'll ever see.

Find the book here.


BOOK :: Book Play

Book Play
by Margaret Couch Cogswell
Lark Crafts
ISBN 978-1-4547-0396-9
Review by Jenny Doh

book play
Book Play is a really wonderful book. It completely redefines bookmaking with designs that are very unique and definitely outside the box of what we might think bookmaking is all about. For example, there is a book that travels on wheels, a paper mache ball book, and my very favorite: a tape dispenser book. Intrigued? Then you'll want to pick up a copy to learn more about these truly experimental and artistic handmade book projects. There are more traditional projects as well, like an accorion-fold book and classic journal book. All in all, Book Play is a wonderful resource for anyone who wants to dive into the wondrous world of bookmaking.


Book :: Party Origami by Jessica Okui

Party Origami
by Jessica Okui
Chronicle Books
ISBN 978-1-4521-1681-5
Review by Jenny Doh

Party origami
Open up the cute little exterior sleeve of Party Origami and find a small booklet filled with 14 origami projects that you can make ... for party decorations and just everyday fun. The booklet doesn't have color photographs but is loaded with illustrations and instructions that can help you learn how to fold all sorts of clever things including Boat Chopstick Rest, Napkin Ring, Star Candleholder, Lantern Butning and more. The most exciting part is that the booklet is accompanied by 75 sheets of super cute origami paper that is very NOW. I adore this entire collection as presented by ever talented Jessica Okui, who has a knack at making everyday projects feel super special.

Yay for Party Origami!


BOOK :: Perfect Health Diet

Perfect Health Diet
by Paul Jaminet & Shou-Ching Jaminet
ISBN-13: 978-1451699142
448 Pages
Review by Jenny Doh

Perfect Health Diet

This is one of the most eye-opening books I've ever read. The co-authors do an incredible job offering science-based research that boils down to this:

  • avoid wheat and most other grains except for white rice and white rice-derivatives
  • avoid sugar and sugar-derivatives (hopefully it goes without saying that aspartame and other artificial sweeteners are not to be invited in, in place of sugar)
  • avoid legumes
  • avoid vegetable seed oils

Doesn't sound so fun, huh? That's what I thought at first too. I wondered how I could say goodbye to some foods that I have been eating and been emotionally attached to for quite some time. But you know what? It hasn't been that hard. In fact, it's been very fun challenging myself to develop meals and recipes with plenty of foods that are recommended in Perfect Health Diet (PHD) ... like all the fruits and vegetables that I love, all the meats and fish that I love, all the rice and potato-based foods that I love—all prepared in a manner that champions flavor, nourishment, and all within a context of portion control and moderation.

The authors base their recommendations on an evolutionary perspective as they ask the readers to consider where we came from, and how we used to eat. They set this foundational groundwork within the first two chapters as we learn about our Paleolithic ancestors—how they moved, how they hunted, how they gathered, how they fasted, and how they ate. 

So once you finish reading a highly scienctifically researched book such as PHD, you either believe it or you don't. I for one believe it. First, because the style and manner with which Jaminet and Jaminet have written and presented the chapters is smart and non-sensationalist. Second, because the book was recommended to me in the fist place by a smart and trusted friend.

But do you know why else I believe it? In just a few weeks of adopting their recommendations, I can already feel the nutritional benefits happening to me. More satisfied, more balanced, and more healthy and clean is how I feel as I have expunged all that is to be avoided out of my diet (for the most part) and embraced their recommendations.

Mind you, I had been a pretty healthy eater before reading this book. But I feel that PHD offers me a set of tools to fine-tune my diet to a level of near perfection that I didn't know how to achieve.

Bravo to Paul Jaminet and Shou-Ching Jaminet for a truly revolutionary book.


BOOK :: Outside the Lines Street Art Doodle Book by Dave the Chimp

Outside the Lines Street Art Doodle Book
by David Horwood/Dave the Chimp
Laurence King Publishing
256 Pages
Review by Jenny Doh

outside the lines
I adore this book. It's cool, fun, and so inviting. It's like a gigantic coloring book where you can go in and color fantastic illustrations. It's also a journaling book/doodle book where lots of spreads invite you in to just react to what's on in the spread. It's also a comic book where some pages are filled with illustrations with text that tell fun little stories. It's also a coffee table book ... filled with really awesome street art that you can admire again and again.

It's all of this and more. It's a book that can be opened up in the middle, toward the front, toward the back ... a book without a real beginning or end ... a book that can be enjoyed by people of all ages.


BOOK :: Rachel Nelson-Smith's Bead Riffs

Rachel Nelson-Smith's Bead Riffs: Jewelry Projects in Peyote and Right Angle Weave
by Rachel Nelson-Smith
Lark Crafts
ISBN: 978-1-60059-783-1
128 Pages
Review by Sarah Meehan

bead riffs

In Rachel Nelson-Smith's Bead Riffs: Jewelry Projects in Peyote and Right Angle Weave, popular beading artist Rachel Nelson-Smith shares her unique, musically-inspired approach to jewelry design. This 128-page book features 23 bold, innovative, and downright funky beading projects, including necklaces, bracelets, earrings, pendants, and rings. It begins with a chapter entitled "The Setup," which guides you through the basic tools and supplies along with the various beading techniques that will be used throughout the book. From there, you dive right in to the projects themselves, all of which are presented with easy-to-follow instructions, helpful technical diagrams, and gorgeous, detailed photographs. Nelson-Smith blends her experience as a jazz musician into every design she features - from her creative project titles (such as "Five-Piece Band" and "Swing Time") to the "Riff It" sections that give you tips for making each piece your own. If you've been looking for a title that will give you a fresh perspective on beaded jewelry, then Rachel Nelson-Smith's Bead Riffs: Jewelry Projects in Peyote and Right Angle Weave might just strike a chord with you.

Learn more here.


BOOK :: Metal Clay Fusion by Gordon K. Uyehara

Metal Clay Fusion
by Gordon K. Uyehara
ISBN-13: 978-1600596971
Lark Crafts
144 Pages
Review by Sarah Meehan

metal clay fusion
If you're an experienced metal clay artist looking to take your work to the next level, then you'll love Metal Clay Fusion. As part of the Metal Clay Master Class Series, this inspiring title showcases 22 original projects by artist Gordon K. Uyehara - one of the most celebrated talents in modern metal clay. Metal Clay Fusion begins with a detailed overview of metal clay terms, tools, and techniques, spanning from design concepts to firing methods to repairing damaged pieces. From there, Uyehara dives right into his eye-catching projects, all of which are accompanied by detailed instructions and close-up, step-by-step photographs. Along with wearable projects like earrings and belt buckles, you'll also discover unexpected gems like chopstick rests and condiment spoons in this 144-page book. Metal Clay Fusion is a must-have for all metal clay artists who seek unique tutorials and tried-and-true techniques to help expand their own skills.

Learn more here.


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