Blog Archives

My Evolution As An Artist

Author Interview
Larry Lewis Author Interview

Where Paint Goes is a captivating autobiography detailing your life as an artist. Why was this an important book for you to write?

After surviving over fifty years of living life as a creative or an artist and being told by numerous folks along the way, “you should write a book.” I thought it might be a good time to chronical my adventures, not so much to tell a story of my personal life, but to portray in parallel my personal life and my evolution as an artist or a creative.

Being intrigued by two statements I was familiar with, from studying art history:

  1. “Art imitates life,” Aristotle, around 300BC
  2. “Life imitates art,” Oscar Wilde, 1889

I found that I subscribed to both of these concepts, which gave me the foundation for writing the book and is why I subtitled the book “The art that affected my life and the life that affected my art.”

I appreciated the candid nature with which you told your story. What was the hardest thing for you to write about?

Being a novice author, I did not realize that to chronical my life in the written word, it would be necessary for me to intimately revisit the periods of my life I wished to depict in the story. Recalling certain parts of the story in this way proved to be highly difficult. Writing about the passing of my wife Kathy in 1989, I cried while I was writing about it and I cry today when reading the passages.

What do you hope is one thing readers take away from your book?

A bit of insight into what it is to live life as an artist, a creative.

Author Link: Website

The historical account of my life as an artist: written in a way that reflects the idea, “art mirrors life and life mirrors art.” I use a subtitle for the book: “The art that affected my life and the life that affected my art.” I am a fifty-year veteran of working in the creative industry, accomplishing and/or holding the titles of – fine artist, painter, sculptor, illustrator, designer, graphic designer, conceptual promotional designer, art director, creative director, under graduate advertising arts instructor, private post-secondary college administrator, mentor and more. This book is written in conversational style.

Where Paint Goes

Where the Paint Goes by Larry Lewis, is an authentic and cleverly written autobiography of the life of Larry Lewis. Throughout his life, Lewis embraced the places he lived and the diversity of the people he met. Both played an important role in shaping his artistic growth. From an elementary student’s misrecognition of his work in an art competition, through adolescent gaffes, to an innovative sculptor and married man, the reader perceives each of Lewis’ life experiences and their effect on his art. Lewis vividly covered the topic of how his art, through his eyes, affected his life and how his life affected his art. Throughout the book, the reader experiences the delights and calamities of Lewis’ life, all as he paints a persistent balance between the style of art he is creating while growing as an artist. He wrote, “Sometimes, one’s vision can be as important, possibly more important, than the sum of knowledge gathered and synthesized in regards to that specific discipline.” (225)

The structure of Where The Paint Goes is focused on a casual, form-flowing style. Lewis begins the story in his childhood, moves on to confesses his teenage blunders, and matures into adulthood fluidly. All the while he shows how he’s grown from an insecure want-to-be painter to an accomplished artist. To add a bit of romance to the story, Lewis shares his clumsy adolescent encounters with girls and his fledgling artwork, to then meeting the woman with whom he wants to spend the rest of his life and his growth as an artist.

Where Paint Goes, The Art That Affected My Life, And The Life That Affected My Art is smoothly written, captures the reader’s attention from the beginning, and is a delight to read.

Pages: 238 | ISBN: 1637281161

Buy Now From B&N.com

Wales High School: First Diagnosis

Wales High School: First Diagnosis (J Peters Autobiography) by [J. Peters]

The Wales High School: First Diagnosis, by J. Peters, is a memoir talking about the first diagnosis of his mental disease. Who could’ve guessed that the blue-haired, chain-smoking teen Jacques was once an academically bright kid straying far away from any social interaction, let alone drugs. The account starts with freshman year at Wales High School, where Jacques is any other academically bright but socially challenged teenager, trying to fit in with the cool kids. It follows his development through high school, and how he ultimately wins the recognition award for “Most Changed”.

The language of the book is crisp and engaging. It hooks the readers right from the first chapter. The book does a fantastic job of describing how mental illness is seemingly invisible to the patient, and how in their mind, their actions are perfectly rational. The book talks about life before the mental health issues arose and shows readers the events that led up to them and then explains what was going through the patient’s mind during treatment.

This is a true to the soul account of a mental health survivor, the book is free from all the glamorization and undertones of extreme morbidity that often are found in books on similar topics. Rather than catch the readers’ eye, the author simply states his story, a true account. This honesty hooks the reader and made me want to know more and dive deeper.

While this is a thought-provoking and authentic story, I felt that the book did not provide a deeper insight into the feelings of Jacques. Even though it does a brilliant job of talking about the thoughts and explaining what a mental health patient thinks, I wanted it to be more emotive. I felt that a deeper dive into the emotions and subconscious of Jacques would have added a greater depth to the entire account.

I really enjoyed Wales High School: First Diagnosis for its extreme candor and simple yet engaging language. With a relatable plot, and short and crisp chapters, the book is hard to put down. It resonates with teenagers going through a similar phase in life and to friends and family who struggle to understand their child, help them, and be there for them. This is by far the truest account that I have come across about mental health issues.

Pages: 110 | ASIN:  B086381MYV

Buy Now From B&N.com

Don’t Mind Me, I’m Just Having a Bad Life

Don't Mind Me, I'm Just Having a Bad Life: A Memoir by [Lewis Kempfer]

Trauma comes in many forms and affects more of us on a daily basis than most will ever realize. Without ever knowing it, we encounter people every day who have had more than their fair share of abuse, drug addiction, and depression. Some of those people have been dealing with that trauma from an early age–Lewis is one of them. As a very young boy, Lewis quickly learned who he could and could not trust, and he saw those around them for who they truly were. His young adult life showed exactly how much damage that abuse caused.

Don’t Mind Me, I’m Just Having a Bad Life is a poignantly written memoir by Lewis Kempfer. Nowhere else will readers find a more raw telling of one man’s life. Kempfer has revealed every wound he has ever suffered and each one of the horror-filled moments he has survived from his early days in Colorado to his nightmarish life in Nashville. He minces no words and gives readers every opportunity to learn from the mistakes he has made along the way.

I can appreciate Kempfer’s story in many ways. He lays down the ugly truth of drug addiction so there is no mistaking the impact it has on the lives of those around the addict. Never does he try to sugarcoat his experience, and he is painfully honest about the ease with which he fell further under the spell. Readers need this–all of us. There is no reader who has not been touched in some way by addiction.

Kempfer’s very real battle with finding his faith is moving to say the least. He allows readers to walk along with him as he sees all sides of religion and hold his hand as he finds his own way. To say his story is stunning is an understatement. To say that it is moving is simply not sufficient. Kempfer’s life is absolutely a miracle and one of which the author is well aware.

I highly recommend Kempfer’s memoir to anyone struggling with addiction or any parent of a child who feels like they are losing the battle to find themselves. Kempfer’s road has been long, filled with the worst kind of potholes, and has nearly killed him, but his story will save someone.

Pages: 475 | ASIN: B07V2PS82D

Buy Now From B&N.com

Honing A Champion

Honing A Champion: My Pandemic Journey From White Belt To Achieving Black Belt by [Haon Campbell, Monty Campbell]

Honing a Champion is an inspirational biography about a young boy who sets out to achieve a dream and the journey is punctuated by many life lessons. We follow Haon and his aspirations to learn, Tang Soo Do, becoming a black belt along the way and learning so much more in the process.

Honing a Champion is a compelling autobiography that explores what it like to be so young and so driven. Rather than viewing Haon’s experience, this book allows us to sit next to Haon himself as he eagerly tells us every step of his awe-inspiring journey. While I appreciated the exceptional journey, towards a goal so few achieve so young, what I really enjoyed was the powerful life lessons Haon learned along the way. These lessons can inspire anyone to improve themselves, in many ways, through determination and hard work. Haon’s writing is exceptional in it’s ability to deliver these stirring lessons in a way that makes you feel as if you were right along side him as he learned them. This motivational autobiography is filled with great quotes that, if effort is given, can push you to achieve your aspirations in life.

I enjoyed this book, but there were a couple of experiences that were repeated, along with a few grammatical issues. Otherwise, this is still a powerful book with great lessons to be learned through a stirring journey through martial arts. Haon Campbell does an exceptional job of sharing his life lessons with the world in a book that I highly recommend.

Pages: 54 | ASIN: B08GSNXMCH

Buy Now From B&N.com

Cooking In A Teacup Before & After

If you’re picking up this book in the hopes that it provides you with recipes for cooking in a teacup, you’ve picked up the wrong book. However, if you’re looking for a charming, self-reflective exploration of not only a life in food but an era, as well as a commentary on the societal experiences to be had within that era, then Cooking In A Teacup Before and After: An Autobiographical True Tale is here for you.

Nowadays, it seems hard to believe that a 21-year-old with no cooking experience (or even much life experience) would be left to her own devices in a kitchen in the Australian outback. But in 1952, that’s just what happened to Lesley J Mooney. Thankfully (for both Mooney and us, the reader of her autobiographical tale), she accepted the opportunity, acknowledging it, even subconsciously, for what it was: really interesting. So, here we are, in 2020, unpacking a book which lays out the experiences which unfolded before and after.

Mooney is really funny, and writes with a wry tone that makes each phase of her life joyful to hear about. While using the phrase “Ignorance is bliss” isn’t usually employed when it comes to the skill of cooking, and one book entitled “Country Woman’s Cookery Book” isn’t considered the overarching manual when it comes to culinary mastery, they certainly facilitated an hilarious starting point for Mooney’s attitude when taking on the challenge set out by her father to take the cooking job.

The structure of Mooney’s cooking experiences make a strong backbone to what, at the fleshy center, is a heart-warming autobiography of her life and becoming a woman in a conservative time in history. Having this structure in place gives the book good pace, and contextualizes the elements of experience and storytelling well.

Though perhaps a mild spoiler – it all goes well enough that Mooney thinks it appropriate to write about it all these years on. Even at the expense of a few bandaged up thumbs along the way…

Pages: 120 | ISBN: 1925959317

Buy Now From B&N.com

The Hardship of Living With a Mental Illness

Karl Lorenz Willett Author Interview

Karl Lorenz Willett Author Interview

Good Life to Perfection Perception is an autobiography detailing the hardships of living with mental illness. Why was this an important book for you to write?

It was essential for me to write this book because my writing explores the depths of the human psyche and could serve as a historic guide into the core of people. My life stories are there to help the ideal readers to experience lessons they need to learn and feel the emotions they need to contact with to reap the benefit from the uninhibited discourses on my psychology, philosophy, relationship, and the hardship of living with a mental illness. And I choose empowerment over shame and stigma.

I thought your views on dealing with mentally ill people were really enlightening. What do you think is something the medical field can change that will make life easier for patients?

I think they can encourage equality between physical and mental illness and have more honesty about treatment. Change the over-prescribing of medicines and there use on patients for far too long to cure all social ills. People who have a chronic illness related to stress, anxiety, social and economic deprivation, alcohol and substance misuse may feel hopeless and lost.

More extensive use of treatment and therapy can work best and make life easier for the patient who adds more daily goals challenges as they start to feel better. People gain back their purpose, self-esteem and self-worth.

What do you feel is a common misconception people have about schizophrenia?

Commonly believed myths about people with schizophrenia are that they are dangerous, unpredictable and unintelligent. Those misconceptions must get busted over time with education and from stories from people with lived experiences of schizophrenia.

Although the patient may be more aggressive and violent during acute episodes, multiple factors make symptom exacerbate precipitate aggressive behaviour. People with the condition have more trouble with mental skills, learning, and memory, but that shouldn’t mean they are not intelligent. Also, at times, perfectly normal responsible people may feel, think or act in a way resemble people with schizophrenia.

I found your book to be enlightening. What do you hope readers take away from your book?

I hope readers remember my profound views on the understanding of the role of Jesus as a symbol of love, truth, and hope and learn from their human spirit of God within their soul. Get inspired by my fantastic outlook on living life with integrity and ponder on my thought-provoking narratives, which covers many relevant subjects, such as religion/spirituality, and acts of terrorism which instill a sense of fear into humanity.

Author Links: Amazon | GoodReads

Good Life to Perfection Perception: An Autobiography by [Karl Lorenz Willett]Good Life to Perfection Perception: An Autobiography gives insights into the aspect of my life, non-falsifying stories, and the ethics applied upheld truth, fairness and ethical values and obtained knowledge that can be trusted are the facts without biases. Personal records of the author have given birth to two books. The Memoir of a Schizophrenic offers a glimpse into the life and struggle that took place before the world learned who I am.

The second book called, Good Life to Perfection Perception: An Autobiography is memories now about the present experiences that include mental illness and future, what to do next. The science of the author’s voices in his head has a divine mind, and his body consciousness was in agony has a hell and the art in writing communicate the emotions. And the verbs of the brain gave him creative information to process and processing power.

If you’re browsing and this is the paragraph you happened to glance at sincerely consider to buy this book. It’s a necessary piece of non-fiction that promises at the end of chapters you’ll be better for reading it. I am addicted to doing the right thing, and my conscience is always saying to itself do the right thing and asked itself the right way not to get it the wrong way. So, word gets understood by everyone at any level of ability, and the truth will affect people, and lies would affect the people too.

If the things that I wrote is perfect, and the words agree with other people’s, but may not sound the same, its rule is original, and nobody will have the ability to change them, but to agree.

Buy Now From B&N.com

Good Life to Perfection Perception

Good Life to Perfection Perception: An Autobiography by [Karl Lorenz Willett]

Karl’s future assumed a bleak outlook after he was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia at the age of twenty. For many, at this age, life was just beginning, the world was at their feet and their dreams were there for the taking but for Karl, the disease he was diagnosed with was a likely precursor to a life of pain and struggles. He would later find himself popping anti-psychotic pills for forty straight years in an attempt to douse the incurable effects of schizophrenia and live the closest thing to a normal life. Tired of having to still deal with the symptoms of the disease and the side effects of the drugs, he chooses to slowly get off his medications in the hope of finding healing elsewhere. How will this decision affect him and his family?

Good Life to Perfection Perception by Karl Lorenz Willett is the autobiography that reveals the hardships involved in living with a mental illness and also shows the humanity of a man plagued by something beyond his control. Karl is downright honest and raw as he uncovers his thought processes, ideas, failings and victories. This book is definantly emotional, or at least I was emotional when reading this book. Emotions like passion, pain and pleasure are some emotions explored in this spirited book. I was both touched and intrigued by his candor and courage.

Karl doesn’t simply present himself as a victim of circumstance, rather, he shows that despite his limitations, he can think critically and hold personal views. For instance, in the book, he shares his beliefs about the possibility of there being a better way to handle mentally ill individuals without placing them on anti-psychotic drugs for the rest of their lives. He also expresses his thoughts on religion, societal ills and world peace. At a point, I nearly mistook him for an ancient Greek philosopher, no kidding.

While I appreciated the story, and the courage with which it is told, the book could benefit greatly from a thorough edit. A good editor could clean up the grammar errors and organize the story so that it is more coherent. As is, I had to reread some sections to ensure I understood what was being said.

While the author touched on many issues, his major focus was on telling the story of how schizophrenia impacted his life. He shed light on the difficulties he had like how it was impossible for him to hold down a job, the constant pain he felt, the cognitive limitations he had and many more. I was moved the most by his struggle with empathic distress, a condition that made watching the news and seeing all the sad events unhealthy for him. All in all, seeing these issues from the perspective of a patient of schizophrenia increased my ability to empathize with patients of mental illnesses.

Pages: 293 | ASIN: B084GZT9BP

Buy Now From B&N.com

%d bloggers like this: