Sunday, January 1, 2017

Flair by Jim and Jennifer Poage

Flair: Design Your Daily Work, Products, and Services to Energize Your Customers, Colleagues, and Audiences by Jim Poage, Jennifer Poage

Learn how to add WOW! to your products, services, and everyday work in order to increase sales as well as advance your career.

What makes certain products gain mass appeal, acquire a dedicated following, and draw customers to wait in line for the latest version? Why do some restaurants book out weeks in advance and create buzz among would-be patrons? How are certain employees able to energize their colleagues and elicit enthusiastic participation during meetings? What sets these notable products, services, and employees apart is their flair - their charm, panache, liveliness, and energy.

Flair shows how to add meaning and joy to your products, services, and everyday work. Employing principles and practices developed from interviews and research with design firms, artists, and business experts, the authors show that anyone can create inspiring flair - not only in products and services but in their own daily work - in reports, presentations, and meetings.

The benefits of flair for your company are an exceptional reputation, increased sales, and premium prices. For you, flair increases management's appreciation of your work, enabling you to stand out and advance your career. And once you fully understand flair, you'll see that creating it can be fun.


Interesting read about intuition, design, emotions and the way to understand customers.

Through various examples of sucessful (or not) companies, the author explains how the art of understanding your target, the art of story telling and with sincerity, you can sell everything.

Trendy nowadays to wait for the customers to come to you because you have something they want and desire (because you have made them think so, of course!)  It's called "Flair" or Inbound Marketing with a focus even more accentuated on emotions.
The way you invest yourself to produce the best contents, products or devices will have an impact on your coworkers, your work atmosphere and your customers.

Mindfulness in all your actions bring success and contentment!

*Arc provided by Edelweiss.
I received this book in exchange of a fair and honest review.

Happy New Year 2017!

Happy New Year!

Wish you all to be deliriously happy... Be naughty, be true, be you...
No resolution for me just to be able to dream again and to find more balance in my life.
Hugs and enjoy all your new adventures!

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Branding + Interior Design by Kim Kuhteubl

Branding + Interior Design: Visibilty and Business Strategy for Interior Designers by Kim Kuhteubl


The home goods market in the United States is the largest market in the world. Then why do some interior design firms thrive while others barely survive? The answer lies in one powerful little word: brand. 

More than a pretty logo, it involves telling the story of your distinct point of view who you want to serve and why you do business, and it's a process that happens from the inside out. This book bridges the gap between designer and design leader and shows pros how to define, value, and communicate their vision; find clients who are a fit; and master the art of being visible. 

Worksheets give designers the tools to learn these strategies and apply them to their work. It also includes candid conversations with design leaders such as Barbara Barry, Rose Tarlow, Kelly Hoppen, Vicente Wolf, Christiane Lemieux, Clodagh, Martyn Lawrence Bullard, and others."

Interesting and very inspiring!

When I first read the title and the summary, I thought I will open a book full of nice home design projects. There is some and very elegant and stylish ones. But it's more than that. It's a good that take a fresh home designers by the hands to explain the business and what to do to be successful.

More important, it's a book that reach you as a human being. Getting into your fears, your lack of confidence as a professional to make you understand that your differences are what makes you valuable. So the author ask you to stop hiding and express yourself.

Nice explanation about brand, yours, and how to expose and sell it on the social media, website. Every communication tools that will help you to reach your customers.
It was a great read with interviews, quotes and tip to boost your confidence and put you on the right path.

Even if I'm not from this industry, it was a nice pep talk to people with a creative mind who often doubts their capacity.
Really cool read!

*Arc provided by Edelweiss.
I received this book in exchange of a fair and honest review.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Colored Pencil Painting Portraits Alyona Nickelsen

Colored pencil painter Alyona Nickelsen reveals how to use the medium to push the limits of realistic portraiture.

Colored Pencil Painting Portraits provides straightforward solutions to the problems that artists face in creating lifelike images, and will prime readers on the intricacies of color, texture, shadow, and light as they interplay with the human form. 

In this truly comprehensive guide packed with step-by-step demonstrations, Nickelsen considers working from photo references versus live models; provides guidance on posing and lighting, as well as planning and composing a work; discusses tools, materials, and revolutionary layering techniques; and offers lessons on capturing gesture and expression and on rendering facial and body features of people of all age groups and skin tones.

Realistic paintings and drawings have always amazed me.

When I was able to draw, I've understood the dedication and long hours you need to reach a good level. It's about patience, time and technics.

In this book, the author gives you great tip to blend the colors to obtain a beautiful realistic outcome on portrait. Alyona Nickelsen explains the pigment, the material you need to use as well as how to draw and add the color to be satisfied with the result.

She has created a great book with easy to understand explanations that really motivates you to put your hands on a paper and start applying her advices.
Very interesting and cool book!

*Arc provided by Netgalley.
I received this book in exchange of a fair and honest review.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Shadows of the Forest by Emma Michaels

Everyone is dying to live in the Shadows of the Forest.
They gave me three rules to follow in exchange for my brother’s life:
1. Do not enter the West Wing;
2. Do not go outside after darkness falls; and
3. There is only one exit; The Gates.

This is what happened when I broke them…

The cover was attractive. The plot intriguing.
As I have into heavy read, I said "bingo" that will do a great change and a nice entertaintment. Sigh!
Not at all.
In the middle of the story I was still trying to understand why the heroine was beating herself so much. She plays the victime from the start and it gets annoying. She repeats the same words as if they were mantras to beat herself up. It's nice to have flaws, to express raw emotions but to have a character depressing in a quest. It's difficult.
No way to like her or to connect.
End up not finishing the book.
Too bad cause it was promising.

*Arc provided by Netgalley.
I received this book in exchange of a fair and honest review.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Interconnected by Ogyen Trinley Dorje Karmapa

A practical vision for sharing the planet from one of the leaders in Tibetan Buddhism.

What if we all lived with a deep awareness of our connection to each other and the earth? How can we move in that direction? For the Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, interdependence is far more than an intellectual idea. He sees directly how our inner worlds shape our outer worlds and vice versa, and how looking at each other with profound empathy can fundamentally reshape the human race. 

Drawing on the tools of his Buddhist training, but speaking in universal terms accessible to people of all backgrounds, the Karmapa shows how harnessing the power of our thoughts and emotions can make us far more effective as agents of positive social transformation.

Raise a lot of good questions!

I have spend a wonderful moment with this read. When I was commuting, I was smilling at what it means to be interdependent, unique, autonomous. I was agreeing on the feeling of distance and loneliness coming from the social media.
We are unable to talk to each other in the real world but we spill our personal beans into the virtual one.

Some food for your thoughts about how we are changing and how we should be cautious and seeking balance in our life.
Life is amazing if we are taking care of what really matters and not always chasing illusions.

Great book to savour slowly.

*Arc provided by Netgalley.
I received this book in exchange of a fair and honest review.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

The Impossible Fortress by Jason Rekulak

A dazzling debut novel—at once a charming romance and a moving coming-of-age story—about what happens when a fourteen-year old boy pretends to seduce a girl to steal a copy of Playboy but then discovers she is his computer-loving soulmate.

Billy Marvin’s first love was a computer. Then he met Mary Zelinsky.

Do you remember your first love?

The Impossible Fortress begins with a magazine…The year is 1987 and Playboy has just published scandalous photographs of Vanna White, from the popular TV game show Wheel of Fortune. For three teenage boys—Billy, Alf, and Clark—who are desperately uneducated in the ways of women, the magazine is somewhat of a Holy Grail: priceless beyond measure and impossible to attain. So, they hatch a plan to steal it.

The heist will be fraught with peril: a locked building, intrepid police officers, rusty fire escapes, leaps across rooftops, electronic alarm systems, and a hyperactive Shih Tzu named Arnold Schwarzenegger. Failed attempt after failed attempt leads them to a genius master plan—they’ll swipe the security code to Zelinsky’s convenience store by seducing the owner’s daughter, Mary Zelinsky. It becomes Billy’s mission to befriend her and get the information by any means necessary. But Mary isn’t your average teenage girl. She’s a computer loving, expert coder, already strides ahead of Billy in ability, with a wry sense of humor and a hidden, big heart. But what starts as a game to win Mary’s affection leaves Billy with a gut-wrenching choice: deceive the girl who may well be his first love or break a promise to his best friends.

At its heart, The Impossible Fortress is a tender exploration of young love, true friends, and the confusing realities of male adolescence—with a dash of old school computer programming.

Tender moments and really funny read!

Fresh and fun, this story made me smile a few times. I even laugh out loud in the metro with the antics of these young men and their determination to read Playboy!
The author really captures your attention with his plot and the lovely way he is telling you his story.
It's old fashion, nostlagic, creative and sweet.

Really cool read!

*Arc provided by Netgalley.
I received this book in exchange of a fair and honest review.