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Sunday, 20 August 2017

Artist's Date

Street Art in Leicester - Maria A Smith 

It's been just over a month since I last posted to this blog, and I'm eager to catch up and get things back on track. Firstly, thank you to everyone for their best wishes, my mum is making good progress and things have settled down. 
Real life happens to all of us, we and sometimes you have no choice but to stop what you are doing, and pick up and run with whatever it is that takes priority. Interestingly, with all the many changes, I've managed to keep writing throughout the last month, albeit in short bursts. I have a new monologue, and I've managed some flash fiction too.

I've also started doing morning pages, which some of you may be familiar with yourselves. It's a twelve week course taken from the book The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron, which involves writing three handwritten pages  of A4 each morning, upon waking. The idea behind it is to get rid of all the stuff in your head which is holding your artist back.  I've already completed four weeks and feel so much happier for doing them. It's hard to explain but they really do help clear your head and leave you feeling energised. The book is a game changer for anyone feeling jaded or blocked. Or if you need some motivation.

You also commit to going on an Artist's date once a week, which is basically time spent on your own doing something different. So far I've been to the cinema, done my own version of aqua aerobics at the pool, and most recently I walked around the cultural quarter in Leicester with my camera, capturing images of the street art on the walls of buildings, and hoardings around renovation projects. 
Street Art Leicester  - Maria A Smith 
Some of the murals are large scale and cover complete building walls. All are part of Bring the Paint International Street Art Festival, which happened a few months ago. The idea was to transform Leicester with high impact street art of a superior quality.

Street Art Leicester - Maria A Smith 
The event bought 150 artists together, and there are more legal spray sites across the city which I have yet to explore. The art work is a visual celebration of Leicester's diverse culture. I found it fascinating, and really enjoyed photographing the artworks.

Street Art Leicester - Maria A Smith 
Spending time on my own has been enjoyable, and I'd encourage you to try The Artist's Way for yourself. At first it will seem like a big ask of yourself to make a solo expedition to explore something that makes you curious, because we are too busy, and won't take the time out, but trust me it's worth it.

It will be a challenge for me to come up with more interesting dates, but I'm going to give it my best shot.

What have you been up to?                  

14 comments:

  1. I've only just caught up with the news about your mum. I'm glad things are starting to settle down now and your mum is making good progress.

    I absolutely love the street art. I think it is beautiful. The Artist's Way sounds interesting. Good luck with those morning pages - I think that's definitely a book that's going on my wish list!

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    1. I can vouch for it Teresa, it's amazing how it changes your perspective on life.

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  2. Hi Maria - I'm glad your mother's challenges are easing. The street art is amazing - wonderful to see. Good luck with the morning pages- sounds a good way to start the day ... cheers Hilary

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    1. Thank you Hilary, they are even more awesome close up. I have tried to capture images next to vehicles etc so you can get an idea of their size.

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  3. I'm glad your mum is doing OK.

    Getting out and doing something different once a month is a great idea. It's easy to get stuck doing the same things all the time and then it's harder to write interesting new stuff.

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    1. The Artist's dates are supposed to be weekly Patsy, which is quite difficult for me to do with all my commitments.
      I'm raking my brain as to what I can do before Sunday. Monthly would be so much easier to plan.

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  4. Someone lent me The Artist's Way recently and I'm working my way through it. I'm on week seven and can't believe the benefits I'm feeling. I've even signed up to do a pastels class! I must admit I'm behind on my artist's dates, but I haven't missed a single day of morning pages.

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    1. It's great isn't it?
      You have to do them to understand how you get that 'ding' moment, where you realise you feel so much happier about stuff. And yes, the dates are the hard part...

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  5. Glad your mum is making progress, Maria. I love that book and was given a copy a couple of years ago - I never did get to the end so it's time to start again!

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  6. Really interesting to hear your experience with The Artist's Way. I've done the odd Morning Pages but I haven't really committed to it, I think I might give it another go though, you've inspired me. Glad things are settling down a bit with your mum, I hope things continue in a positive vein.

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  7. Glad to hear things have settled down for you and your mum, Maria.

    Those art works are wonderful, thanks for sharing them.

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  8. I'm just about to start week 12 of The Artist's Way, and what a revelation it has been. I've not managed the artist's dates every week, but I haven't missed my morning pages at all, and I've made some interesting discoveries about myself.

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  9. Hi Maria, haven't heard from you in a while, I hope all is well. Look after yourself. CJ xx

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I really appreciate you taking the time to leave me a comment, and I try to reply to every one. Many thanks!