Saturday, September 15, 2012

30 Days of Gratitude - Day 15 - Artist Date

One of the main tenets of Julia Cameron's "Artist's Way" is the artist date, basically time spent by yourself in creative or inspirational pursuits. For instance, you could take a walk with your sketchbook, go to an art supply shop and buy some new supplies, or write in a journal. Extra points for doing something for your inner child, like getting new crayons or fingerpainting.

Here are some ideas.

I did this on Saturday; I went to JoAnn and spent as much time as I wanted (probably around an hour) wandering around, looking at everything, looking at beads and magazines and art supplies, and was particularly struck by the new Halloween items.

One of the SARK quotes that I always remember is something like, "Inspiration follows action, not the other way around." In other words, to get inspired, do something. Write something, even if it's junk (like Anne Lamott's "shitty first drafts" advice). Paint something, make something, write something. If you can't think of anything to write, make lists.

James Altucher:
Every day I write down ideas. I write down so many ideas that it hurts my head to come up with one more. Then I try to write down five more.

. . .

The “idea muscle” atrophies within days if you don’t use it. Just like walking. If you don’t use your legs for a week, they atrophy. You need to exercise the idea muscle. It takes about 3-6 months to build up once it atrophies. Trust me on this.

It's the same way with the "creative muscle." The more you create, whether it's writing or painting or sewing, the more you do, the more ideas come to you.

I'm grateful for my "creative muscles," and grateful that there are so many inspirational places for me to spend time feeding and growing them.

Photo: 9/15: Artist Date


Julia Cameron Live - Artist Dates
101 Artist's Date Ideas
James Altucher - How to be the luckiest guy on the planet