The Artist's Way Monthly Meetup Guide: Workshop - Week 5
Weeks 9 & 10 of The Artist's Way
Week 9: Recovering a Sense of Compassion
This week finds us facing internal blocks to creativity. It may be tempting to abandon ship at this point. Don't! We will explore and acknowledge the emotional difficulties that beset us in the past as we made creative efforts. We will undertake healing the shame of past failures. We will gain in compassion as we reparent the frightened artist child who years for creative accomplishment. We will lean tools to dismantle emotional blocks and support renewed risk.
Page 151. Cameron, Julia (1992). The Artist's Way. New York: Penguin.
Week 10: Recovering a Sense of Self-Protection
This week we explore the perils that can ambush us on our creative path. Because creativity is a spiritual issue, many of the perils are spiritual perils. In the essays, tasks, and exercises of this week, we search out the toxic patterns we cling to that block our creative flow.
Page 163. Cameron, Julia (1992). The Artist's Way. New York: Penguin.
- How many days this week did you do your morning pages? How was the experience? Have you recommended the morning pages to anyone else? Why?
- Did you do your artist's date this week? What did you do? How did it feel? Have you considered scheduling an entire artist's day?
- Were there any issues or accomplishments this week that were significant for you?
Taking the First Step
"Finding it hard to begin a project does not mean you will not be able to do it. It means you will need help - from your higher power, from supportive friends, and from yourself. First of all, you must give yourself permission to be begin small and go in baby steps" (p. 152).
On page 154 Cameron discusses the idea of the "creative u-turn". This is when we are on the road to productivity and success, and we sabotage ourselves because "we're more comfortable being a victim of artist's block rather than risking having to consistently be productive and healthy" (p. 154-155).
In Week 10, Cameron discusses the importance of the morning pages during a creative drought. "The pages have nothing to do with writing, although they may facilitate it as they do all art forms" (p. 170).
Playfulness & Creativity
Up to this point, Cameron has repeatedly discussed the idea of doing rather than thinking and the importance of overcoming previous conditioning. Here is a short clip from the film The Visitor, shared by Meir, which addresses playfulness and creativity:
Reading Recommendation from Carol L.
Tasks for Next Week
- Three pages of longhand writing, strictly stream-of-consciousness, every day.
- Read your morning pages! (see task on p. 160 of The Artist's Way)
- One block of time, especially set aside to nurture your creative consciousness.
- Read/browse through Weeks 11 & 12 of The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron.
- Write down one creative goal. Then write down the first step toward achieving that goal.
- At some point this week, try to take that first step toward achieving your goal.
- Example - Creative goal: Create a series of digital photographs. First step: Learn to use my digital camera!
- Create something (anything) to bring with you to the next meeting to share with the group.