Tag Archives: artist date

Deep breath and…. Artist’s Way – Week Two

7 Nov

         Yes, I just realized I’ve taken about a month and a half hiatus from my poor little blog.  And while my Artist’s Way update may not be the most fascinating thing to read… it’s the only way I really have of keeping myself accountable to the project that I’ve long since slacked on.
         I don’t know what it is about this book, and why it’s so difficult for me to get through.  Week 2 could more accurately be called Week 2 over the course of seven actual weeks… but here I am. Actually ready to move on to week three despite some very confusing and irritating hesitation and near anxiety over the idea.

         Now I most definitely did not do my morning pages every morning.  I could blame it on the busy month of October, which it was… and I could blame it on the unpredictability of my work schedule, which it is… but really, if I don’t write immediately upon waking up, before leaving my bedroom… then there’s a very slim chance that I will write them at all (Although the thought of them will loom over me all day).  So while my writing has been spotty, and even though I hate it half of the time when I am in the middle of it, I really truly can breathe better when I am writing them on a regular basis, so I’m putting more effort into making this a habit.  I’ve actually noticed that the times when I stop writing so often… are generally the times when I’m trying to avoid acknowledging a feeling.. or seeing the truth behind a thought that I’m trying to claim is something else.  Morning pages are like a conversation with myself I guess.  It’s hard to write a sentence that isn’t entirely accurate without being immediately aware of it.

         The exercises this week though, are always some of my favorite and I finish them quickly when I actually sit down to do them.  The time exercise always kills me, but always prompts me to make some immediate changes.  In fact, maybe I should do that one on a monthly basis, just to check-in.  I had to sketch out a break-down of the 5 activities I spend the most time on.  I spend an unnecessary amount of time sleeping… and while I’ve gotten better at not spending hours upon hours tooling around on the internet, I’ve replaced that with watching old episodes of either the Office, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, or Glee (no judgment please).  So, several weeks ago, I started limiting my time spent on both those activities, but I’ve since slipped a bit…

I listed ten tiny changes I’d like to make and I did make one of them.

I drew a little life pie, as she calls it, and rated my satisfaction in various areas of my life.  While I’m feeling fabulously about the Romance & Adventure, Friends, Work and Spirituality areas of my life… the unsurprising appearance of Exercise on the low satisfaction scale and the more suprising Play area are suffering.

One thing I thought was interesting… kind of sad… and perhaps explains the unsatisfactory rating of the existence of “Play” in my life was the last exercise that I did.  List 20 things I enjoy doing.  Easy, breezy, right?  Except it took me a while… I didn’t just bang out twenty things like i expected to.. I got stuck a few times and had to sit and think… and think… and think… That made me feel a little underexpended in the fun department.  When did this happen?!  I don’t know if it’s because things start to get so busy that even the fun things don’t always register as play? So I picked one, “reading for fun”, and started doing much more of that.  Not monumental, but a first step.

20 Things

So that’s that. Week two finished. It was called recovering your identity… but I think it was more of a navigational status report. A look at where you are, what you do with your time and what you’d prefer to be doing with it. Interesting results, to say the least.

AND…. This will be my first time every starting Week Three! I’m kind of excited. And for the record, I did do a couple versions of artist dates over the past seven weeks.  Here’s a couple photos of them.

Carpinteria Beach
A morning at the Carpinteria Beach

Painting Workshop
Painting workshop in Oakland

Reading under the trees in Alameda Park

The Artist’s Way – Week One

19 Sep

         I have tried to do the Artist’s Way dozens of time for about the past three and a half years.  I’ve tried to do it solo and I’ve recruited friends… I have yet to make it past the second week.  The morning pages are something I’ve managed to keep, however sporadically, and remain one of my little source of sanity.
         So here I am, once again, at the beginning of the twelve weeks.  Mary and Megan! I’m keeping an eye out for your posts!

Week One.
         I actually do not like this chapter one bit. The reading is interesting, but the exercises… the monster hall of fame and writing a letter in my defense are not in any way appealing to me.  Nor is drawing a villanizing picture of one of my past jerks.  I know that she says that the things you resist are supposed to be the ones that are really cathartic for you… but really, I just can’t think of people in my history who have been particularly discouraging to any budding creativity.  You know, besides myself. If I reach… I could say a couple art teachers.  Only because if you turn work in late,  and my work was always late, it gets completely discounted. Other than that, I’m at a loss.
         The Champions were a cinch, two of my lovely college professors and a former boss. And actually, they stand out to me more so because they were supportive and encouraging of me as a person, in creative endeavors as well as most other things.
And of course… who doesn’t love the imagining 5 different lives exercise?! Always one of my favorites. (btw I was a writer, a professional dancer, a model, a teacher and a full-time mom. I want to know what you were!)

         My artist’s date… I always feel like I have to pack a bunch of really amazing things into a couple of hours… but I tried to start “feeding the well” slowly this time.  So, I spent an hour in an art store. Art Essentials is conveniently located two doors down from one of my jobs. I didn’t buy anything… I just looked, and touched, and read descriptions of tools I didn’t recognize, and entertained a variety of potential projects in my head as I walked through the aisles.  Simple, yes. But I had a blast. I didn’t even realize an hour had passed until I was out.  I flipped through books, looked at the phases of painting sunsets, different drawing techniques, metal art pieces and suggested camera angles.  I picked out the kinds of portfolios I would want to have, should I ever have a need to fill a portfolio.  I looked at dye, clay, woodworking tools, walnut oil based paint, canvases, composition books, and rows and rows of gorgeous papers and textures.  Did I mention I had a blast? And of course, I couldn’t resist snapping a few photos with my phone too (at the top)… literally a feast for the eyes, hands and imagination.

         As for my morning pages. I did miss one day. But I decided to go easy on myself because I’ve been pretty damn good with them otherwise.  I even got so caught up in complaining one morning… that I went straight through to the fourth page.  Is that something to brag about?

Okay girls, passing the torch! And I’m far more excited for Week Two’s exercises.