Tag Archives: The Artist’s Way

In Defense of Midnight Writers

22 May

I love it when I find scientific support for my bad habits.

From as early as I can remember, I’ve stayed up late at night reading. Then, somewhere along the way I started writing, too.  Fast forward a few years (or decades):  I started working through The Artist’s Way with my fellow Chicks.  I struggled with the morning pages – a key element in awakening creativity.  All that spilled out in the morning for me was junk.  Very uninspired.  But at night?  At night the ideas have always come without effort.

And guess what? It turns out there’s a reason for it. I just read an article in the May/June 2012 issue of Scientific American Mind that, in a study at Albion College, assistant professor of psychological science Mareike Wieth essentially found that creativity peaks at times of mental fuzziness.  Hello, midnight!  It’s the perfect time for me. Creatively, at least.

If you are like me, gravitating toward the page at night, then take heart.  And keep on writing!

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Chicks Chat About Camaraderie – Week 10

31 Jan

Despite our Lone Ranger mythology, the artist’s life is not lived in isolation.  This week focuses your attention on the caliber of your friendships and creative collaborations.  Loyalty and longevity, integrity and ingenuity, grace and generosity – all of these attributes are necessary traits for healthy creative exchange.

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!

Week 7 Task: Learning to Navigate the Learning Curve

1 Nov

This is an exercise in encouragement. Faced with doing something new, we often forget we have successfully done many “somethings” old.  Take pen in hand and list 10 things you have learned to do despite your doubt they could be mastered.

– Julia Cameron

As you all know that we are recording our new Theme Song.   I have done some crazy things but singing has been the craziest. The truth is I can’t sing at all!  but that did not stop me, I was excited about recording our theme song.  I believe that having my chicks there supporting and encouraging me, and having our music muse there making me sound decent gave me the courage to do it and enjoy it.

Here is my list of 10 things I have leaned to do despite my doubts.

1. Run a Triathlon – Who though at 40ish something I could love this sport.
2. Buddha Center to learn how to meditate– I learned to quite my mind which was impossible for me, and has helped me deal with hard situations.
3. Accounting – WOW!  Never went to school for this and it has come naturally to me even though I really don’t enjoy it.
4. Writing – I’m not a very good writer.  But blogging has forced me to at least give it a try.
5. Videography – Even though I’m still learning.  I really enjoy capturing great moments on video.  And without it I would not be able to video blog the chicks.
6.  Going back to school – This is big.  I have been debating this for many years and questioning myself if I could go back and have the patience to do this.  Well I could say now that I’m doing great and enjoying every minute of it.
7.  Reiki Practitioner – Took Level 1 and Level 2 classes and has really helped me.
8.  Public Speaking – Ohhhhh! How I hate to speak in public.  But at my 5K Mercado Run I was forced to give a speech.  OK, it was not that bad and I wasn’t really forced. I did have some blocking moments in which I had to close my eyes when announcing the charity organization to the group, in which was the most important part of course.
9. Breast Feeding – Never though I could do this and was the best experience of my life.
10. Driving Stick Shift – I needed a car when going to college and someone was selling their Jeep for a good price.   I didn’t want to say that I couldn’t drive a Stick Shift, because I wanted the car so bad.  I learned on the way home from work with a friend telling me what to do.  I almost gave her a heart attack.

What are your 10 things?

Momentum – Week 7 Walking in this World by Julia Cameron

21 Oct

Creativity thrives on small, do-able actions.  This week dismantles procrastination as a major creative block.  The readings and tasks aim at a sense of personal accountability and accomplishment.  The key to a creative life is sustained, consistent, positive action.  This is possible for all of us.

“We Need a Theme Song!”

4 Oct

That was the revelation exclaimed through no small amount of laughter or wine at a recent 4 Chicks girls night out. There, in the middle of our local Macaroni Grill, we proceeded to sing our favorite 80’s sitcom theme songs:

You take the good, you take the bad…Making your way in the world today…I don’t need you to worry for me, ’cause I’m alright…Sit right back and I’ll tell a tale, a tale of a frightful trip…Thank you for being a friend…Believe it or not, I’m walking on air…

Apparently, our singing and other entertaining commentary was to the amusement (or horror) of the our waitress Danielle and her manager, the latter who kindly comped our desert and last glass of wine, perhaps hoping we would leave more quickly.

At any rate, I–who for the record had not been drinking and should have known better–overheard myself enthusiastically volunteering to take on the task of writing us a theme song. It sounded fun, and in the presence of my Chicks, anything seems possible.

When I first sat down to do it, however, I was stuck. The thing is, for twenty years, I’ve told myself that “if” I had music lessons, or money, or more time, or someone who knew how to arrange, that I could be good at making songs.

But today, thanks to the support of the Chicks and the inspiring words of Julia Cameron’s books, I’m not afraid to be bad (or even just okay) at something I love. Creativity is the best kind of therapy, and all of us have an inner artist who needs to PLAY! ♥

The adjectives suggested to describe our blog became more interesting as the night went on, ending with "loud."

Enter our giveaway today when you subscribe to win a copy of the book that started it all for us Chicks, “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron. I challenge you to read this book and not have it change your life.

Meanwhile, with a little help from the benevolent universe, the 4 Chicks will be “producing” this tune for our theme intro video, to be directed by our film maven, Chick Eva. Stay tuned!

The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron – Giveaway-CLOSED

27 Sep

Many of us wish we were more creative. Many of us sense we are more creative, but unable to tap that creativity. Our lives feel somehow flat. Often, we have great ideas, wonderful dreams, but are unable to actualize them for themselves. – Julia Cameron

Subscribe and you might be the lucky winner to win the groundbreaking bestseller “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron.

Make Something of Yourself

20 May

The 4 Chicks Chat about Julia Cameron’s Walking in this World: The Practical Art of CreativityChapter 3: Discovering a Sense of Perspective

“The readings and talks of this week aim at detoxifying your thinking regarding the arts and your place as an artist in our society.  Art is tonic and medicinal for us all.  As an artist, you are a cultural healer.” ~Julia Cameron

This week, the Chicks looked beyond the barriers in their way, used their frustration as fuel, and made a slightly, er… different video.  As always, they shared their candid thoughts with each other, and with you, dear reader, about the art they are making and the artists they are becoming.  What are you making, and making of yourself, this week?   

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.

Stepping Outside My Comfort Zone

5 Mar

Wow, what a great day!   I had so much fun with the Chicks yesterday.  We just took a huge step forward – finally having our first meeting to discuss Chapter 1 of Walking in This World.  It felt so good.  It has been a few months since we finished The Artist’s Way, and I didn’t realize how much meeting to discuss it was helping me stay open to creativity, and feel so challenged and encouraged. 

Videoing our chat was actually fun, if a little intimidating.  We were kidding, of course, when we called it “The View”.  But it really did feel like our own show!  Can’t wait to see the video clip that comes out of it.  Or…maybe I can. I’m not too excited about seeing myself on video.  It’s out of my comfort zone.  I guess that is an important part of any creative endeavor, though, isn’t it?  Doing new things helps us see not only new things, but also see what already existed in a whole new way.

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