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Week 12: The End of the Walk

16 Apr

Well, they took 12 months instead of 12 weeks to finish The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, and that’s how long they took to finish Walking in This World, too. For the past year, the 4 Chicks have walked and talked their way through this second book together. To celebrate this completion, and in the spirit of Cameron’s many excellent creative exercises in her books, I inspired the 4 Chicks to hold a “Letting Go” fire ceremony, burning their fears, frustrations and other negative feelings that might otherwise block their future creative paths, as well as a whimsical “Dream Planting” activity, articulating their top three creative dreams for the future and giving them fertile ground in which to grow.

If I, the Muse, inspire you as well–be it writing, illustration, music, drama or any other artistic endeavor–consider bringing together three fellow sojourners and continue further down your own creative path today.


The Winner is…..

10 Nov

Thank you to all our new subscribers, existing subscribers and those following us on Facebook, YouTube and Vimeo.  We’re so glad to have you “here” as part of our creative community.  Also, we are pleased to announce the winner of our first giveaway – writer JA Humm.  The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron is winging it’s way to her now.  Don’t forget to check out her blog!

Vision Board Resurrected

9 May

Like my fellow Chicks Eva and Tracey, I finally saved my vision board from a dusty netherworld.  Mine was in the corner of my office behind my sofa side table. 

What does it mean that I relegated it there?   That I am not taking my own vision seriously enough?   That I fear others will scoff at my dreams?   Maybe and definitely yes and probably much more.  I now have it by my bookshelf where I can see it more easily.  It’s not mounted, framed and lit, but if  others look around when they come into my office, they can see it too.   And now, anyone who looks at this post can see at least a corner of it.

I love looking at it.  Every picture on it speaks to me.  Which is why I guess it made it to my vision board in the first place.   What will others think when they see it?  It doesn’t matter.  What matters is what I see.  And that I’m inspired by it.

Picture Myself Here

12 Mar

A picture’s worth a thousand words, but this poster’s invaluable–at least to me.

The funny thing is, I found it at almost exactly the same time Eva found hers, neither of us looking for them.  We made them over a year ago as part of an exercise in The Artist’s Way.

Last week, I went to move the buffet in my dining room to temporarily place a mirror behind until I could hang it (not wanting my son to break it first).  That’s when this rolled out from underneath.

“What’s this?” Michael wanted to know.

“Oh, nothing,” I assured him.  “Just a little collage I made with the girls last year.”

But it really is more than that.  The power of visualization is evident. Just a short year later, this poster feels like it’s actually coming to life.

What does the life you want look like?  Make your own poster.  It seems silly, I know, but it really does have value, as much as you can imagine.  If you want, send us a photo and “the story” of your collage to Chick Stories.  Just don’t be surprised when the life you visualize starts becoming real.

Not Superwoman

11 Mar

I am not Superwoman.  I really can’t have it all, and I certainly can’t do it all. As unsurprising as this admission may be, I need to keep reminding myself of it.

I have only so much time and energy. This I cannot change.  Therefore, I feel the need to spend what time and energy I have to do the most good.  But what is that?

Sure, the superheroes of comic books and movies can save the world.  That’s because they don’t have to stop a moving train and chase after a toddler, at least not at the same time.  Just imagine Superman having to change his clothes and his sidekick’s diaper in that phone booth.  Exactly.  Not to mention, those guys always have some adopted earth-mom or great-aunt who washes their colorful laundry, cooks their hearty meals and no doubt picks their dirty tights and capes off the floor each morning. I say, those women are the real heroes, the ones scrubbing the super-scummy showers and toilets. 

Of course, Wonder Woman changed everything.  In the seventies, she was my generation’s girlhood role model of female power, proving that women could do anything men could and thereby setting the field for the rest of us to prove the same thing in real life. But did Wonder Woman have a family to take care of?  I think not.  Although if she had, I’m sure she would have had really great full-time childcare and bi-weekly maid service.  But even then, she would have lived with the working-mom angst that is different but every bit as painful as the stay-at-home mom angst.  That’s my take anyway, having thrived and despaired on both sides of this proverbial fence.

So what about our artist child?  This metaphor, used repeatedly in Julia Cameron’s books, has more meaning than ever for me.  With the many demanding roles and commitments we take on as women, what time or energy is left for us to “play?”  Yet at the end of the day–even a chaotic, messy, unglamorous day like most of my days–it still comes down to something else.  Ultimately, busyness is just another form of procrastination, a respectable-seeming alibi for not being where your heart is telling you to be.

My family “comes first,” as people often say.  But if I don’t include my artist child as part of my family, then the sailing won’t be smooth forever; a hurricane will inevitably form in the warm waters of my unconscious and hit land hard.  So once again, I am faced with the need to let go.  I must let go of things that are less important if I am to truly grab hold of those things that are most important in my journey as an artist and a spirit here on planet earth.

I am not Superwoman.  I am not Superwoman.  I cannot create art and do everything else I want or need to do, at least not at the same time.  I must choose.  I must prioritize.  I must walk. Because when my artist gets to play, the rest of my life seems happier, too.

Creative Visualization

10 Mar

I just found my vision board that we Chicks each created when we were going through the The Artist’s Way book last year.  I decided to put it out so I can see it everyday and focus on what I want to create for myself.

I don’t know if you realize that I’m not a writer like my other Chicks. My creative endeavor is to do a documentary of my mother’s family.  I know what I need to do; I can see it in my mind and how I want it to go.  But it’s been so hard to put it down on paper and to really get a clear picture of what I want the viewer to know. I can go in so many directions, that I just get frustrated and don’t do anything.

So looking at my vision board made me think that the vision board has helped me in many ways.  By seeing it I’ve had a clear picture of what I want to accomplish and what I need to do to accomplish it.   Then I realized, that I need to treat my documentary the same way.   Put it all down on paper, even if I jump around and go in different directions.  But by visually seeing it, it will become clearer what I want the viewers to see.

“I like to think of myself as an artist, and my life is my greatest work of art.  Every moment is a moment of creation, and each moment of creation contains infinite possibilities.  I can look at all the different alternatives, and try something new and different and potentially more rewarding. Every moment presents a new opportunity and a new decision.

What a wonderful game we are all playing, and what a magnificent art form…”

– Creative Visualization by:Shakti Gawain

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