Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Nonfiction

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Nonfiction

Article excerpt

Byline: BRANDY HILBOLDT ALLPORT

'THE ARTIST IN THE OFFICE'

Author: Summer Pierre

Data: Perigee Original, 128 pages, $13.95

Summer Pierre's resume includes experience as a nanny, an art store clerk and an administrative assistant. She is also a freelance writer, singer and visual artist.

Pierre created a handmade 'zine that caught the attention of editors at the Penguin Group. It morphed into a recently released book that offers realistic advice about how artists who find themselves spending the majority of their time in Cubeville, rather than in front of an easel, revising drafts or composing at the piano, can incorporate their passion and talent into 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. gigs.

"I am not telling people to neglect their duties," Pierre said in a phone interview from her home in Brooklyn, N.Y.

"People have obligations, deadlines, bosses, I understand that. ... The idea is that though you might feel like you are living two lives, you only have one."

In the words of the news release for her book, "Pierre "shows people how to ... fully incorporate inspired impulses ... and not let office life drain creative expression."

A self-confessed "creativity jump-start junkie," Pierre finds inspiration in books such as "Writing Down the Bones" by Natalie Goldberg and "The Artist's Way" by Julia Cameron.

"Are you kidding me? I have them all ... 'Bird by Bird,' 'Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain' ... Sark ... I love Sark," she said.

Though she is a fan of these books and many others ("you should see my bookshelves"), Pierre wanted more. More discussion about the distressed feeling of living two lives. More about exactly how to make art a priority.

She recognized a similar yearning in friends and even strangers she met at parties.

Pierre describes this state of existence in the introduction to her book: I thought until I "made it," I didn't have a choice. …

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