I’ve written a lot about being a big fan of the Julia Cameron book The Artist’s Way. I’ve followed this 12-week program several times in my life, and it has really made a difference in the way I see myself and my potential for creativity. The last time I “did” The Artist’s Way project, I blogged about it every week. You can see the archive here.
One of my favorite things about The Artist’s Way project is that you make a creative date with yourself every week. This is a habit I have tried to carry over into my life as a permanent fixture. Not every week, necessarily, but regularly. This year, I decided to take one workday off every month and play creative hooky.
This is how my first creative hooky day of 2012 went:
First, I went to the Mill Valley Library and read magazines.
My intention was to find new magazines to submit my writing to. However, I will admit that O! Magazine sucked me in for a while. I hate it when I am an obedient example of the target market. But I did also (re) discover the McSweeneys publication The Believer, which you betcha I will be subscribing to from now on. I particularly liked this piece: Hatorade — about the phenomenon of hateful internet commentary. Been there.
While I was at the library, I checked out a free pass to the De Young Museum in San Francisco.
(Yet another reason the library system rocks the house.) If you haven’t been to the De Young in Golden Gate Park, definitely check it out. It’s my favorite museum in San Francisco. I particularly love that it doesn’t seem to have a theme. It’s not, like “modern art” or “heritage art” or “Asian art” or anything like that. It’s just a mishmash of cool stuff. The main exhibit right now is classic Venice masterpieces (oil paintings). The next one is going to be a Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit. My favorite things at the De Young this time:
The Art of the Anatolian Kilim (Ottoman empire rugs from like 400 years ago)
A very cool mobile sculpture with accompanying shadow art. (More on this.)
Stopped at The Village Market in San Francisco for a mocha.
And while I was there, bought some very expensive rice with bamboo powder in it. I don’t know; I’m a sucker for things that should be really cheap but are actually exorbitantly expensive. $7 for rice? Sign me up! But it was actually quite delicious.
And last but not least, went to pottery class.
The perfect way to top off a day of 100% creative activities. Ah, good for the soul.
Oh also, you guys, because I talk about The Artist’s Way so goddamned much, someone from their publishing team recently gifted me a free trial of their brand new web site service and iPhone app, My Artist’s Way Toolkit. The intersection of creativity and technology is something I’m really passionate about, so I was very excited to try this out.
It’s pretty cool. Whether you are interested in making a commitment to the 12-week Artist’s Way program, or just want a place where you can jot down ideas, receive Artist’s Way journaling prompts and “Artist Date” ideas, and feel like you are really doing something for your inner artist and still being a cool, hip, technical sort, check it out. And they gave me a code you can use to try it for free for one month. Go here and type in: AWTOOLKIT
Make me proud!