Thursday, February 29, 2024

My First "The Artist's Way" Artist Date

Two weeks ago, I inherited a copy of  "The Artist's Way," by Julia Cameron. I found it at Amvets actually. It was in a heap of books that I bought that day -- a bumper crop I will have to get to chronicling one of these days soon.

"The Artist's Way" was originally published 25 years ago and is famous. When I mentioned it to my sister Katie, she knew all about it. I had heard of the Morning Pages, which you learn about first thing in the book. You are supposed to write three pages every day as soon as you get up.

Which, I started doing that right away. I looked into the book, thought it looked fascinating, and made sure that Julia Cameron was not coming at things from any weird New Age perspective. And so the very next morning, there I was, up early, writing my Morning Pages. This morning I believe was Day 12.

You can hear a lot about Morning Pages on YouTube. The next most-talked about aspect of "The Artist's Way" appears to be the Artist's Date. You are supposed to go out once a week by yourself to do something special you enjoy. 

I am into Chapter Two of the book now and I have done two Artist's Dates.

My first Artist's Date was Sunday after church, to Cazenovia Park in South Buffalo. I have not been there since I was 4 and lived around there and it is supposed to be a beautiful park and that was why it was on my radar. 

It might not seem like a big deal, visiting a city park on the other side of town. I go for walks pretty much every day. Most of the time I go by myself. And I really do enjoy them.

However you get your routine. There are a few routes I generally walk and I do not deviate from them much. To me this seems to be a big point about the Artist's Date -- it is supposed to change up your routine. You do something different.

You can easily start overthinking things, however I think I am on the right path with this. Because when I decided to go to Cazenovia Park, I could not believe the resistance I gave myself. There is something in you that does not like change.

What happened was, I was on my way to go on my usual walk, and I pulled over. I will map my way to Cazenovia Park, I thought. I will get on Google and have it direct me.

Then I raised a chorus of objections. "I'll get lost. I'll waste all kinds of time driving around. I won't get in my 10,000 steps. It's cold. Why don't I take my usual walk, and I'll go to Cazenovia Park after that..."

I pulled away without Googling. I drove another half a block. Then I pulled over again.

The same thing happened however this time I powered through. And yes, I did get lost, and yes, I spent 15 minutes or so driving around.

However I did get there, I got in my 10,000 steps, and I had a great time stepping outside my usual routine. I walked along Cazenovia Park in the freezing cold. I warmed up in the sun. It felt good to be looking at different things. I took the picture up above. Followed be others including these:

Early -- very early spring -- I love it. I love the colors. I loved the blue sky.

The adventure took me two or three hours and I was happy I did it. I do love walking around, thinking, and looking at things.

Which is also what I did this morning, on my second Artist's Date. I think Sunday is the best day for this kind of thing, however I am not sure I will be able to find the time this Sunday, and so I took the time slot I could get.

I will share the juicy details tomorrow!

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