10 Art Books That Will Nourish Your Creative Soul This Month (November 2019)

Creative Art Books

Photo: Nicole Honeywill
This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase, My Modern Met may earn an affiliate commission. Please read our disclosure for more info.

With November halfway over, you’re probably thinking about holiday gifts. It can be tricky picking the right present for someone, but you know what’s a safe bet? Books. Nearly everyone enjoys leafing through the pages of a book, and through them, many people will be delighted to learn something new or appreciate the perspective they've gained.

With seemingly countless books available online, where do you start? We’ve compiled a list of 10 titles that were recently released this fall. They range in subject matter and are sure to satisfy someone on your list. For the person that loves Disney, why not enlighten them to the hard-working women behind the scenes? Nathalia Holt tells their stories in The Queens of Animation. Or if your recipient is more of a DIYer, then they might enjoy Sarah Simon’s Modern Watercolor Botanicals which will show them how to paint a variety of plants.

Scroll down for more of our suggestions. And if you have a Kindle device, you’re in luck—many of these publications are available through the e-reader, too. Through Kindle Unlimited, you have an unlimited reading of over a million ebooks that can be read on any device.

Get your holiday shopping started early with our picks for the best art and photography books for November 2019.



View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Felicia Day (@feliciaday) on

Embrace Your Weird: Face Your Fears and Unleash Creativity by Felicia Day

The things that make you “weird” might be your best assets. Through Felicia Day’s book, you’ll be introduced to her personal stories and wisdom—in addition to techniques that will empower you to discover your creative outlet.



View this post on Instagram


A post shared by The Monacelli Press (@monacellipress) on

Midlife by Elinor Carucci

Photographer Elinor Carucci documents a period of life that often evades our cultural dialogue: middle age. In Midlife, she examines her own life as well as her family members as they reflect on marriage, illness, and more. At the same time, we are invited to contemplate our own experiences that life brings.



View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Johanna Basford (@johannabasford) on

How to Draw Inky Wonderlands: Create and Color Your Own Magical Adventure by Johanna Basford

Ever wish you could draw like adult coloring book author Johanna Basford? Learn how to create your own wonderlands through her illuminating exercises and prompts.



View this post on Instagram


A post shared by The Monacelli Press (@monacellipress) on

Designing a Garden by Michael Van Valkenburgh

Landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh shares how he created the masterpiece that is Monk’s Garden—a walled garden with meandering paths and contemplative space.



View this post on Instagram


A post shared by TJC [danielle krysa] (@thejealouscurator) on

A Big Important Artist: A Womanual: Creative Projects and Inspiring Artists to Kick-Start Your Imagination by Danielle Krysa

In 2018, author Danielle Krysa wrote A Big Important Art Book (Now With Women). She’s since expanded on that title with A Big Important Artist: A Womanual. It features interactive projects, profiles of “powerhouse contemporary women artists,” and sketchbook ideas to get your creative juices flowing.



View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Lynda Barry (@thenearsightedmonkey) on

Making Comics by Lynda Barry

Illustrator and professor Lynda Barry is a sequential art legend known for her imaginative and deeply personal work. In Making Comics, she shares her comics-making exercises that detail her creative curriculum.


Mister Rogers' Neighborhood
Mister Rogers' Neighborhood: A Visual History by Fred Rogers Productions, Tim Lybarger, Melissa Wagner, Jenna McGuiggan

Did you love Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood as a child? Relive the beloved television show with the book’s exclusive photographs, a guide to the characters, puppets, and episodes as well as ephemera and original interviews.


1,000 Places To See Before You Die
1,000 Places to See Before You Die by Patricia Schultz

Author Patricia Schultz’s unique travel book takes you on a visual journey to amazing places around the world. You'll see the mist over the Great Wall, festival dancers in Bhutan, and much more. Since the last publication, there are over 1,000 new photos and 544 pages—so get ready for a trip.



View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Pamela Sue Estes (@chickadeedodah19) on

Modern Watercolor Botanicals by Sarah Simon

Whether you’re a beginning drawer, intermediate artist, or advanced in your skills, you’ll learn something new about botanical art. Sarah Simon’s lessons will show you how to paint olive branches, wildflowers, tropical leaves, and much more.


The Queens of Animation Book
The Queens of Animation: The Untold Story of the Women Who Transformed the World of Disney and Made Cinematic History by Nathalia Holt

Few Disney fans know that behind our favorite animated films is a group of influential women who fought for respect in a male-dominated industry. They flew under the radar for years, but with Nathalia Holt’s book, their dramatic stories are told.


Related Articles:

10 Drawing Books That’ll Teach You Everything You Need to Know About Sketching

20 Books Every Artist Needs on Their Bookshelf

10 Inspiring Books to Celebrate Remarkable Women for Women’s History Month

8 Essential Art History Books for Beginners

10 Inspiring Children’s Books for Budding Little Artists

Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
Become a
My Modern Met Member
As a member, you'll join us in our effort to support the arts.
Become a Member
Explore member benefits

Sponsored Content