Thursday, December 22, 2011

Morning Pages and Artist Date - Tools of the Artist's Way

As the year is ending, I am reminded once again of projects undone and creative pursuits kept on hold because of lack of time, motivation and the need to earn real money... fast!

So I am embarking on this task of unleashing my inner creativity by taking a 12-week course through "The Artists' Way - a Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity." It is a course in discovering and recovering your creative self written by Julia Cameron and Mark Bryan.

I've gone through the introduction and I was taught how to use two main tools for the duration of the course: Morning Pages and Artist Date

What are morning pages?

Basically, as a student of this course, I am asked to write every morning three pages of whatever comes to my mind. When this course was made, blogging hasn't been born yet. So ideally, this should be written down on a notebook. But I prefer to write it on a separate blog I call Jen's Morning Pages.

Anyway, in terms of its content, there is no right or wrong way of doing this. The things I write about can be negative, positive, boring, wrong grammar, wrong spelling, whatever. It doesn't really matter. The point of this exercise is to be able to write my thoughts the instant I think about them, no matter what I think about the activity, no matter how I feel at the moment, no matter how much I resist doing it, whatever the case may be. No corrections should be made. I just have to do it. This type of discipline will allow me to detach myself from my emotions. Eventually, this act will help unleash my creativity no matter what I feel or think.

What is the Artist date?

This is a set of time (like two hours a week for instance) where I take my own inner artist out on a date. It should just be me and my artist self. Spending time in solitude with my artist child is essential to self-nurturing. It could be anything as long as I do it on my own. I should do what intrigues me, what excites me. In order to have a real relationship with my creativity, I must take the time and care to cultivate it. Generally, the student's creativity will use this time to confront himself, to confide with himself, to bond with himself, and to plan.

These are the two most important things during this whole 12 weeks of unleashing my inner creativity and unblocking my fears and roadblocks. The artists who have taken this course in the past have continued doing these things well beyond the 12-week duration of the course. Many of them have fulfilled their dreams of becoming artists, some have become movie producers (like Steven Spielberg), real authors, painters, etc. I intend to finish this course and continue using the tools afterward. I've already signed my contract and I am committing myself to this.

Wish me luck!

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