Recommended Reads :: Living Art Edition

Recommended Reads :: Living Art Edition - Chatting at the Sky

They aren’t all pictured, but here are several books I’ve read that have helped to shape and influence my own thoughts about making and living art. I would love to hear from you in the comments, books you recommend as well. I reserve the right to add to this list as more titles come to mind.

Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art :: Madeleine L’Engle

Notes From the Titl-A-Whirl: Wide-Eyed Wonder in God’s Spoken Word :: N.D. Wilson

Scribbling in the Sand: Christ and Creativity :: Michael Card

The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles :: Steven Pressfield

Sacred Rhythms: Arranging Our Lives for Spiritual Transformation :: Ruth Haley Barton

Let Your Life Speak: Listening for the Voice of Vocation :: Parker J. Palmer

Orthodoxy :: G.K. Chesterton

Becoming a True Spiritual Community: A Profound Vision of What the Church Can Be :: Dr. Larry Crabb

To celebrate the end of our 31 day series, I’m going to host a link up tomorrow October 31, inviting you to share words and/or images that represent the art you’re making with your hands or your life right now.

We’ll choose 2 winners from the entries – one of you will win a $100 gift card to Barnes and Noble and another will win 10 copies of  A Million Little Ways for your small group, friends, or family to read together.

So take your photos and write your words and have them ready to link up here tomorrow. I can’t wait!

This is day 30 of 31 Days of Living Art. Click here to see all the posts in the series. If you would like to have each new post delivered into your inbox for free, simply enter your email address here and click blog posts.


  1. says

    Thank you for this list. I own Madeline L’Engle’s Walk on Water and I remember it being a book I wanted to year annually. I’ve borrowed it out a few times. I already want to read it again.
    I’ve heard a lot about Sacred Rhythms, I feel it gets quoted often around blogland.
    I have so enjoyed your 31 days of Art, Emily, you’ve really done a powerful thing this month with your writing.
    As far as a link-up goes…do I just have to blog about it, and/or send YOU a photo? (I don’t have instagram or twitter) and then link my blog here tomorrow to tag along?
    Sarah M

    • says

      You’re welcome, Sarah. Sacred Rhythms is a good one.

      As far as the link up goes – don’t send me the photo. Simply put the photo in your blog and then link up the permalink to that blog post here tomorrow.

  2. says

    Great list! I just finished reading “The War of Art” and I think I underlined or highlighted just about every other sentence in it. I had to keep stopping to write down quotes from it in my journal. I loved his book “Turning Pro” so much I read it twice this year already.

    I haven’t read “Walking on Water” in years. I think I’ll have to pull it out again and revisit it.

    P.S. I have really enjoyed your series, Emily. Thanks! :)

  3. says

    Thank you, Emily, for all the resources and encouragement I’ve gained through reading your book MLW and reading daily here… you’ve spoken deep into me and I look forward (patiently) to seeing what fruit will come. You’re a blessing!
    xo Heidi

  4. says

    I LOVE “Walking on Water” and have heard alot about “Notes From the Titl-A-Whirl” and it’s on my list. An old one is “The Hidden Art of Homemaking” by Edith Schaeffer which is less about “homemaking” as we might think of it and more about art in everyday life.

    • says

      I love the Hidden Art of HOmemaking, too. I recently gave the book away to a church thrift store, and I regretted it immediately. A few days later, I went there and bought it back! So glad it hadn’t been sold.

  5. says

    i love this list emily! i have several of these and another one i love is bird by bird by anne lamott. i’m going to have to pick up a few of the ones i don’t have! thank you!

  6. says

    I’ve enjoyed your series very much, and will enjoy reading the books you’ve listed.

    A book that has touched me as an artist is The Creative Call by Janice Elsheimer. I think you’d enjoy it.

    Shalom and blessings to you and yours,


  7. says

    You and your book and your blog have rocked my world….in an excellent way. Thank you for this list. I am a HUGE fan of Parker Palmer’s – every other sentence is highlighted-read it 1.5 years ago and it got these wheels turning. Now YOU! :) God bless you mightily.

  8. says

    Thank you for this list. I find myself immersed in children’s books with homeschooling – I learn so much from them. But I always have a good ‘meaty’ book I’m working on myself although I rarely put in the effort to research books which I’d like to read next. So I really appreciate that you have given me some suggestions here. You are such a blessing and breath of fresh air each day – thanks.

  9. says

    Hey, thanks for this list. I have about a zillion books I want to read right now. Time. Need more of it. Still finishing up yours – soaking it up, rather. Just really thankful for your heart. xo

  10. Christine Ann says

    I just had to respond to your celebration of books that have influenced our lives, simply becaue I came across a book on my shelf this morning , that I had almost forgotten.. ‘ The Pastor’s Wife’ by Sabina Wurmbrand ( Richard Wurmbrand’s wife). I bought it in the mid 1980’s at conference and read this inspiring, yet hard hitting, book several times over the years. Other inspiring books include;
    ‘Just Give Me Jesus’ by Ann Graham Lotz.
    ‘What is Family’ by Edith Schaeffer
    ‘ Journey into God’s Heart’ by Jennifer Rees Larcombe
    ‘ I’ll Have What She’s Having’ by Bobbie Houston
    ‘Greater’ by Stephen Furtick
    ‘A Confident Heart’ by Renee Swope
    ‘What Happens When Women Say Yes To God’ by Lysa Terkeurst
    and so many more, too many to include here..
    I love to learn from other people’s writing and life experiences.

  11. Blaire M. says

    Hi Emily! I love reading your posts. I mostly love this one, though, lists of books excite me as much as the books do! I would add “Take this Bread” by Sara Miles. She writes about her journey – atheist turned Christian! – And how she found Jesus through the act of feeding people. It’s beautiful. I just finished it about two months ago and want to read it again!

  12. says

    I LOVE book list posts. And of course, your booklist with this theme is one of my absolute favorites. I would venture to say that since I first read Walking On Water at age 23, through the years its become my favorite book. I’m excited to read Notes From The Tilt-A-whirl as well as Sacred Rhythms at your recommendation. I also love Michael Card’s book and The War of Art. Books I’d add to your list? I love The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp and Untitled: Thoughts On The Creative Process by Blaine Hogan. I’ve also referenced The Artist’s Rule: Nurturing Your Creative Soul With Monastic Wisdom by Christine Valters Paintner, andThe Soul Tells A Story: Engaging Creativity with Spirituality in the Writing Life by Vinita Hampton Wright. I’m looking forward to reading Art & Fear and Breath by David Bayles and Breath For the Bones: Art, Imagination & Spirit: Reflections on Creativity & Faith by Luci Shaw. Thanks as always for your words Emily – your blog is always one of my favorite online reads! :)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *