This Artist's Way...

I was invited to join an on-line Artist Way (by Julia Cameron) Book Club by fabulous artist Jessica Brogan.  I thought it would be a year long adventure of learning to do things in my life in a more artistic way.  Turns out I was wrong - it is so much more than that!  The Artist's Way is about looking inward to find what is blocking your creativity and how to breathe life into your inner artiste. Our group is doing one chapter a month.  I sort of scoffed at that, thinking it would be a piece of cake to complete.  Turns out I was wrong again!  We did the first chapter in July, and I spent parts of the whole month really digging in and following the path that it took me. Part of the book advocates taking weekly Artist Dates.  A time that you have carved out to do something that inspires and ignites the sweet whisper of latent creativity lurking within.  Week 1 I went to the marvelous DaVinci Exhibit at our local Art Center.  Week 2 I spent an afternoon at the Barnes and Noble coffee shop ingesting book after book of art and pictures (and a few cups of coffee....and the most delicious peanut butter cup cookie!!).  Week 3 focused on lessons in a Class called Supplies Me - where you learn to better use all of your art supplies - which is awesome for me because I do have pretty things that I don't use frequently!  This past week I had a friend come over and we spent the afternoon creating canvases together - she was hoping to learn some new techniques that make art feel like play.  And I got to practice teaching - what fun! Today I had my Artist Date right out on my back deck.  It's finally cooled down enough to site outside.  So me and my colored pencils took an art journal outside and went to town.  I practiced faces, bottoms and backs.  The breeze was perfect, the leaves were rustling and time simply slipped away. The other main part of the assignment is completing Morning Pages - 3 journal pages a day of whatever is on your mind.  It's really a little nutty what happens to be on my mind some days!!!  The focus of the Morning Pages this month was finding the little voice that wants to convince you dreams are unreachable...impossible...crazy...never going to happen.  I found that little voice and guess what he was saying?  That "art is not worth creating unless someone is going to buy it".  Really?  I had no idea that belief was in there.  I kept going and found that this belief is tied to "No one ever will really buy your art, so why do it."  and finally to the mother of all nasty, creativity stomping thoughts "Creating something just for you is a waste of your time." The beauty of finding this inside me is now that I have examined the thought, I am rejecting it as untrue.  Guess what little voice - this time YOU are wrong!  Creating beauty just for me is totally worth my time.  Sometimes what I create will speak to someone else and they will want to see it often enough to own it.  And I believe that they will - they already have!  But even if they don't, the process of pouring my soul onto canvas is healing and magical for me.  And creating magic in my own life is always, always worth my time. I've posted some pictures of art journal pages that I have recently made.  Art journaling is just for me.  To express.  To try new things.  To play with beauty.  So this particular Artist's Way is meandering on a path through Art Journaling on the bookclub journey to creativity unleashed!  
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jill said:

Morning Mary!
I love AW! I’ve taken you class and co-facilitated 2. I’m loyal with the artist’s dates but sometimes struggle with the morning pages. Glad that you’re finding AW so useful. I think if more people did it, more would find their bliss and the world would be a happier place! Keep up the great work!!


justmarydesigns said:

Thanks Jill! I agree with you and love that you have helped spread creativity by facilitating!! Good for you!


Jill said:

I love this post Mary, especially seeing your creations. I’ve read The Artist’s Way a few times but I’ve never really followed through with doing all the activities…not sure why. It’s nice to see someone who is…perhaps the inspiration I need?



justmarydesigns said:

I am glad you find it inspiring Jill – you could join our group if you want to!!


sandie said:

I love this post Mary. I can so identify with it! I’ve been thinking about how to blog about the bookclub and you have said it all so well. I have dabbled into Art Journalling, love the idea and mean to do so much more. I have boxes of materials and a wallet with basics in, so there is little excuse. I did post here about my first jump into journalling:

It is a lovely idea to use art journalling as a way of working through TAW and you have reminded me, thank you. I have been journalling but needed this nudge to dig deeper and express myself. I will add to you to reader so that I can follow your journey. Have fun and thanks for sharing!!

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