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The Magic of Artist Dates

My students understand “working” on their Morning Pages-- after all, this is America, and we have a powerful work ethic. But the very same students who studiously apply themselves to writing their three pages a day often find themselves balking at my assignment of an Artist Date. And yet, an Artist Date is what fills the well for them, triggering synchronicity and the flow of creativity in their pages and in their life.

"But Julia!" students exclaim, "Taking an Artist Date is hard."

Yes, it is, I agree, at the beginning. But as Artist Dates become a weekly habit, they become easier.

Some students ask, "What exactly is an Artist Date?" I tell them it is a weekly expedition to explore something that enchants or interests them. It may be a trip to a bird store, to a children's bookstore, to a flower shop, to a museum. It does not need to be "high art." In fact, if we think of our creative self as being an inner youngster, we will be on the right track.

My most recent Artist Date entailed a visit to a store called "Feathered Friends." I met with finches, cockatiels, lovebirds and parrots of all sizes, colors and descriptions. I found myself enchanted, and, long after I left the store, birdsong echoed through my consciousness.