• Bookshelf

    Jesse’s Bookshelf

Illustration

Bookshelf: Hilariously well-written bookshelf here from Adventure Time story-boarder Jesse Moynihan!

Posted by Liv Siddall,

I hadn’t heard of Jesse Moynihan until last year when a copy of Forming landed in It’s Nice That HQ. A publication concerning monsters, cavemen, cursing, gore and sexy-times, it was kind of a big deal, nay dream come true. Jesse is not just a comic book author, but also a story-boarder for Adventure Time which may just be the coolest job title ever (if you’re aware of Adventure Time that is) so without further ado, here’s one of the most hilarious and amazing bookshelf features I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading…

“I was going to include Space is the Place: The Lives and Times of Sun Ra by John Zwed, but I don’t really know if I could call it one of my favourite books. It’s more like a story that came at a time in my life when I really needed it. I was 22 and feeling defeated by Philadelphia. Anyway I don’t own the book anymore. I sent it to my ex-best friend Nate after three years of being pissed at him for dumb reasons. So here we go…”

Manly P Hall: The Secret Teachings of All Ages

This book was recommended to me by Conspiracy Matt. I got to know Matt because I saw him every day at the coffee shop, wearing golden boots, reading Aleister Crowley. Eventually I worked up the courage to talk to him about his book selections. We rapped about reptilians, The Hollow Earth , rock music, and mystery cults. Matt is an intense dude and sometimes he would start shouting at me about some really touchy conspiracy shit that I won’t repeat here. Regardless, I’ll always be grateful to Matt for turning me on to Manly P Hall. I’ve read TSTOAA through and through. I use it constantly to help me springboard deep into my inner world. It’s a mammoth piece of work. My memory is trash, so I’m always re-reading passages; digging up new ways of observing symbols from the past, that are hidden in the present.
Manly P Hall: The Secret Teachings of All Ages: An Encyclopedic Outline of Masonic, Hermetic, Qabbalistic and Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy

Joe Daly: Dungeon Quest Book 3

Since I’m a cartoonist I thought I’d include the best comic of 2012 which is Dungeon Quest Book 3 . The other two Dungeon Quest books are also great. What starts off as a low-key, stoner comedy about some weirdos in the suburbs, develops into a dense and passionate epic swashbuckler. It pulses with a hilarious energy and narrative clarity that is sorely lacking in most comics I read. Joe Daly really kicks his ambitions into high gear in Book 3. After I finished it I was like, “Holy shit man. I’m scared of this guy.” That was my reaction because I’m super-competitive.
Joe Daly: Dungeon Quest: Book Three

Amos Tutuola: The Palm Wine Drinkard

This book was recommended to me by my ex-girlfriend Margaret. It’s about a guy who can’t stop drinking barrels upon barrels of palm wine. Then the dude who was helping him make the wine dies, so he goes looking for the ghost of the guy. It’s a relentlessly linear story that doesn’t adhere to any conventional structure that I’d encountered before. The language used in the book is totally off-the-wall. His descriptions and word-play floors me on every page – each sequence is so funny and violent and shockingly weird/fantastic. Tutuola helped me realize that I could write stories like I was a remote viewer. This is how I’ve tried to approach storytelling ever since.

A few years ago my friend John and I tried to make a computer game based on the characters in Tutuola’s books. I flaked out on the project within a few months, but someone should do it! I would play that game.
Amos Tutuola: The Palm Wine Drinkard

Comte de Lautréamont: Maldoror

When people ask me what my favorite book of all time is, I tell them it’s Maldoror. It’s been so long since I’ve read it, I can’t remember anything about it really! I remember there’s a giant snail, and a guy being whipped to death or something. There must be a reason why I still tell people that Maldoror is my favourite book. At the time of reading it, I hadn’t been excited by fiction in years and years. I don’t think I’ve been that excited by a book since, so until I feel that again, I’ll keep saying Maldoror is the best.

I think there are some similarities between Maldoror and The Palm Wine Drinkard . They both feel like a one-way journey, or an initiation into new, wilder zones. They both take super-reality for granted. The imagery speaks to the part of me that wants to punch mountains and have something mystical happen as a result.
Maldoror : Comte de Lautréamont

Joseph Campbell: The Hero With A Thousand Faces

There was this booky girl at my apartment one time and she was looking through my shelves. I started gushing about Joseph Campbell and then I got self-conscious about it. I asked her if she thought liking The Hero With A Thousand Faces was corny. I don’t know why I think it’s corny. Something in me tells me it is. I guess it makes me feel like I’m a lame screenwriter in LA who thinks I’ve unlocked the key to “story.”

Well anyway she told me it was fine. So I’m not embarrassed that this book has imprinted itself on me forever. Listen you guys. If everyone read this book, there would be no war. Joseph Campbell was an angel. I’m glad I never got to meet him, so I can keep that idea in my head.
Joseph Campbell: The Hero with A Thousand Faces

Ls-300

Posted by Liv Siddall

Liv joined It’s Nice That as an intern in 2011 and is now one of our editors. She oversees itsnicethat.com and has a particular interest in illustration, photography and music videos. She is also a regular guest and sometime host on our Studio Audience podcast.

Most Recent: Bookshelf View Archive

  1. List

    When we received a copy of illustrated sine Steak Night through the door a couple of weeks ago (check it out in Things here) we were pleasantly surprised to find that Bloc Party’s Kele Okereke is not only a musician, but a keen writer too. Intrigued, we hunted him down and grilled him about his Bookshelf, which turns out to be an incredibly well-stocked selection of graphic novels and comic books, with a little photography thrown in too. He’s multi-talented and he’s got great taste! Here’s Kele telling us about his choices.

  2. Main5

    I get the same feeling receiving the zip file from weekly Bookshelf contributors as I did when I used to babysit as a teenager and casually rifle through people’s drawers (by the way, don’t do that). Witnessing the telling spines residing on people’s shelves will always be intriguing, and Holly’s top five is no exception. The editor in chief of i-D has an absolute terasure trove of some of the glossiest, coffee table-worthy tomes money can buy. What’s brilliant about her selection is just how telling it is of her true passion for the world she has been submerged in since beginning as an intern there many moons ago, and of why i-D is so consistently brilliant with her at the helm.

  3. Main

    The amount of times we’ve checked out new work from Joe Cruz at It’s Nice That and just sat around with our heads in our hands, gobsmacked at how simple and effortlessly beautiful his work is. Not just that, but his style is probably one of the most easily recognised of the editorial illustrators we chat about here. We love him so much that we even asked him to illustrate a piece in our own magazine, Printed Pages. Here’s Joe on the artists, books and African fashion that have influenced his work over the years. Take it away, Joe!

  4. Bookshelflist

    Louise Benson from POST Magazine has curated a selection of books from her bookshelf for us! Since we first wrote about POST in 2011, the digital magazine dedicated to showcasing cutting-edge creativity has spectacularly grown, and has become a very intriguing and forward-thinking online platform. The site explores the blurring boundaries between art, fashion, science and technology, and in the past they have published iPad editions of their magazines. For an afternoon, Associate Editor Louise pulled herself out of the digital realm and spent some time with her physical bookshelf. On to Louise for her list of all time favourites.

  5. Main

    Reel off a list of highly-publicised albums recently and chances are that their artwork was designed by creative director and artist, Leif Podhajsky. From Bonobo to Mount Kimbie and Kelis to Tame Impala, Leif’s psychedelic-inspired designs turn these albums from listenable into incredibly desirable in a matter of seconds. Drawing inspiration from the mystic, the kaleidoscopic, the mysterious and the wild, Leif’s site and blog are a treasure trove of beautiful, technicolour work to marvel at. You can almost smell the sandalwood. Here he is on his top five most inspirational tomes, check out that National Geographic collection!

  6. Main

    Can you believe Mr Bingo has never done a Bookshelf for us? We’ve been posting about his work, reading his vulgar Tweets and laughing at his books for years and never thought to ask him. Well, maybe we did ask him and he said no – that sounds more like it. In between Tweeting at Alexa Chung, writing alarmingly insulting hate mail and illustrating for big companies, Bingo is a seemingly avid collector of weird-as-shit books. Are titles such as Dancing with Cats and Self Defence for Women up your street? Then read on dear friend…

  7. Main

    Sometimes at It’s Nice That we like to dip our timid toes into the world of fashion, and what better way to do so than to approach a big dog at one of the best online fashion resources known to mankind? Leon St-Amour is the Creative Director of Mr Porter, the luxury menswear site that – much like us – likes to make people happy each and every day. Where we do it with featuring people’s work, Mr Porter do it with a very special knack for delivering their goods in the most luxurious and hand-clappingly exciting way possible, usually involving a very beautiful white shopping bag being hand-delivered to sartorially-minded folk all over the globe.

  8. Main

    Wahey! We love booze and books in equal measures here at It’s Nice That, so it’s our pleasure to introduce Simon Lyle and his five favourite books to you today. Simon is the editor of Hot Rum Cow, the printed publication containing the hottest news on all things booze – from cocktails to beers and from bartenders to barflies, this magazine’s got it all. Here he is on which publications have inspired him along the way to becoming editor of Hot Rum Cow

  9. List

    Our weekly Bookshelf feature must be fairly nerve-wracking stuff for book artists like Owen Gildersleeve, whose recurring presence on the walls of It’s Nice That is about as unquestioned as the changing of the seasons. How do you represent your own book collection when half of your practice is about creating images for new ones? Fortunately Owen’s passed our test with flying colours, a 10 out of 10 for his five publications that have not only informed and educated him, but make excellent eye candy for us book-lovers too. And if you keep your eyes peeled, you might just spot a very exciting new one all of his own, due to hit bookshelves very soon…

  10. Main

    We’ve long been enormous fans of Ally Capellino, for the timeless bags and vessels she creates that seem to adhere to and stand up to everyday problems of a “doing” person who rides bicycles, carries a lot of books, or just needs a sturdy bag as a tool rather than something to show off. Saying that, everyone I know who’s got an Ally Capellino bag definitely shows it off, and it’s normally so beautiful that no one really minds anyway.

  11. Main

    This week’s beautiful bookshelf selection comes from Jasmine Raznahan, editor-in-chief and creative director of Noon magazine, a stunning new publication which we wrote about a little while back and whose spellbinding pages have held our concentration through many lunch breaks. Jasmine’s brilliant bookshelf contains all sorts of beautifully bound publications, including a lovely looking book about an old lady and her cat, and a very striking study of geometric shapes. Jasmine is also the Director of ARPA, and her impeccable graphic designer’s eye certainly shines through in her choices. Here she on some of her absolute favourite books…

  12. Main1

    People who champion the smaller, artier, cuter, brighter, funnier publications there are flopping around all over the world are our kinds of people. Katja Chernova is one of those, so who better to ask to recommend us some publications for our weekly Bookshelf feature? Katja is the founder of Ti Pi Tin, a small but powerful art book shop in London’s weird cousin, Dalston. Ti Pi Tin stocks small publications, zines, and basically anything printed and bound and sometimes unnecessary that you inexplicably just really, really want to own. Here she is on her personal top five reads…

  13. Main

    If you’ve been dying to know which publications inspire a fashion photographer as prolific as Matthew Donaldson then your prayers have been answered. He’s very kindly told us about five books from his rather beautiful shelves that have informed his work over the years. And what work! Matthew’s photographed for the likes of luxurious big dogs Vogue, Wallpaper*, W and GQ and has also shot slick and witty advertising campaigns for many clients including Sony, Harvey Nichols, Skoda, Coca Cola, Louis Vuitton, Harrods, Missoni, Kvadrat and Marks and Spencer. Ever wonder what a man like Matthew carries around in his blazer pocket? Read on to find out…