“I just get soooooo BORED!” she said, mournfully anticipating the space her daughter would leave as she heads off to college.
Never mind that she lives at the beach, just a breath away from the ocean and the delights of the sea. That’s just it — she LIVES there. What to me looks like vacation, to her looks like the place she does chores and makes a living.
It happens to all of us, the fading of our interest.
What visitors see as cool, fresh, and new, we see as … a To Do list … a trip to the post office to send that gift you bought your brother 4 months ago (oops) … a nuisance of a new construction zone and *yawwwwwn* same ole’ same ole’.
It’s time for an artist date. It’s in detail by Julia Cameron in her book The Artist’s Way, but in a nutshell, an artist date is pre-planned time you spend ALONE experiencing the world in a different way that’s interesting to you.
“Art is born in attention. It’s midwife is detail… The language of art is image, symbol. It is a wordless language, even when our very art is to chase it with words.
The artist brain cannot be reached — or triggered — effectively by words alone. The artist brain is a sensory brain: sight and sound, smell and taste, touch. These are the elements of magic, and magic is the elemental stuff of art.” ~ Julia Cameron
So, the artist date — the intentional sensory tuning in — what might it look like?
Well, our dear bored beach town resident, for example, might take her usual walk on the beach… but turn up her senses a few notches:
- See how many colors you can notice across the sand and ocean waves (there’s soooo much more than tan and blue!)
- Hear as many different sounds as you possibly can. (Have you ever heard the sound of barnacles? I kid you not. Listen here.)
- Notice the incredible variance of shadows and light.
- Discover all the different textures you find in a square foot area.
- Identify the scents of the sea … and what sub-scents make up each larger one.
- What do you feel… on your skin, under your feet, inthe air around you, in your emotional response inside you?
Just. Get. CURIOUS. Deeply, broadly, delightedly CURIOUS.
For in that space of intense curiosity, your mind takes a back seat and your heart finds its voice.
Every important relationship needs the focused, quality time of a date. Why not give your inner artist that same life-giving gift?
Btw, this post is an example of a creativity coaching exercise. If you’d like to talk with me about your Artist Date experience, contact me for a free sample coaching session.