The Artist’s Way: a final post

I’ve only just got round to actually finishing the Artist’s Way. On the 4th of December, I posted that I was dawdling and I’ve just stayed like that really.  I did my morning pages quite well until I was away at the weekend and haven’t really picked them back up.  I’m still not doing so well with artist’s dates – what’s that all about?  I tell myself that the dates in town are more difficult at this time of year, but actually the museums and galleries are blissfully quiet.  I have spent some good quality knitting time over the last week which has got me a bit more balanced.

After I posted the dawdling post, I did indeed re-pot my plants (which were very thankful for it) and do my mending, so really all that was left to do today was a couple of written tasks.  (Sorry, Artist’s Way, but I’m not making a ‘God jar’.)

One was to write about my various fears and resistances going forward.  I do feel a bit worried – I don’t think I’ve been creating as well over the last 3 weeks and I’m worried that I’m the only person on earth to come out of the Artist’s Way blocked when I wasn’t to start with!  But again, it’s a strange time of year.  Finishing NaNoWriMo was strange too, and just not as satisfying as it should have been, given that the piece wasn’t finished.  I’m very tempted to go along with JanNoWriMo, although that suggestion did elicit a groan from Mr Woodsmoke!

I still have trouble getting on board with the whole idea that if you are just open to your creative self, the universe will send success your way.  Carly at NakedCarlyArt put it really well in her review of week 6 when she said Destitute humans did not get to that point by failing to fulfill their creative destinies. I still find this core principle of the Artist’s Way rather hard to handle – I’d love to hear how other people have got their heads round it.

On the other hand, there is so much of the Artist’s Way that has been brilliant.  It really reintroduced me to the idea that I could have pure childlike fun in my life.  I am much more willing to say “OK, I feel like I want to buy some felt pens and stickers and spend an hour making fancy labels rather than utilitarian ones?  Great, I’ll go for it!” whereas before I would have told myself to be a sensible adult and talked myself out of it.

Really my priority going forward is to continue to do the fun things.  I think since I wrote my last Artist’s Way post I’ve managed to dig myself out of my feeling of obligation around my artistic activities, but I haven’t necessarily started doing them just for fun again (the poetry/fiction writing has pretty much been on hold since my last writing group which was three weeks ago).

There’s a bit of me that wonders whether I should just start the whole Artist’s Way thing over again from the start…?

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7 Responses to The Artist’s Way: a final post

  1. Very insightful to see your conclusion. I am still in my Week 9 (and have been for longer than a week now). Cameron was really right though when she explained how we would often try to find ways to get out of Artist Dates. I have been pretty good, but I have trouble thinking of things to do. I live on a very small rural island, and I can wander and photograph, but I can’t just spend a few hours in a museum, (which I something I miss very much about having lived in England). Anyway–your post makes me very curious as to how I will feel when I complete this project. I agree though, it has already brought back a happy childish-ness about things. My art is evolving as well, and I am viewing it with a much more relaxed attitude which is healthy. I wish you the best on getting back into your writing more. I think you should stick with the morning pages if you can–it does allow your to write with no pressure and get that excess clutter out of your head. Anyway–that got long–sorry. Take care. I am interested to see where you go from here.

  2. Paul says:

    Piece of cake. The Universe is energy, and energy responds to intention. If you have fundamental or subconscious beliefs in lack, poverty, unworthiness, etc then you will have that experience. When you release them, and believe in abundance, it will come to you. It only requires a change of mindset. Being not doing. This has been proven by so many in the metaphysical, energetic, and spiritual communities that it is becoming common knowledge. So the purpose in opening to your creativity is that it will put you into the flow of Source energy to your heart. But until you release the doubts, you will continue to experience evidence of them.

  3. Viv says:

    I did the whole thing quite a number of years back, but never subscribed to the idea of everything falling into place with success. Too much like that dreadful scam, The Secret. Success is not defined solely by monetary or whatever terms. However, opening your own creativity is success in itself because it allows you to express yourself.
    I used the sequel, Walking in this World as my basis, and of the 3 tenets (journalling/dailypages, artists’ date and a weekly or daily walk) I still do the two latter. Daily pages has never worked for me.
    Maintaining a sense of joy in creating (whatever) is however harder than it seems. Long dull dry spells occur. Sometimes, you just have to accept them as fallow times and leave well alone.

  4. Viv, I haven’t looked at Walking in the World but it sounds like it might suit me, I’ll have to have a look. I like what you’re saying about creativity being a success in itself. Also accepting the fallow times – I think it really helps to say ‘eh, it’s having a slow time’ rather than panicking – thanks for the reminder of that!

    Something that I didn’t mention in the post but I think is important is the idea that one sort of creativity feeds all the other ones – I have definitely found that to be true! If I have fun with art, I will probably then write better. I hadn’t realised that before I started TAW. Instead, I would cut fun, creative activities out of my life (“not enough time!”) and then wonder why I was so uncreative at work, in the kitchen etc. And creativity seems to manifest differently at different times – sometimes I’ve been really dissatisfied with my writing but then realised I’ve been doing a lot of photography or knitting or something.

    Paul, I’m glad that the spiritual aspects of TAW work for you! I think some of us are natural doubters, so find these areas to be a particular challenge.

  5. Thanks, that’s a good post. It does help to think ‘where is the energy going just now’.

  6. Pingback: Two one-word resolutions | blurofwoodsmoke

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