"Artist Dates are assigned play.
The Artist Date is a once-weekly, festive, solo expedition to explore
something that interests you. The Artist Date need not be overtly
“artistic” — think mischief more than mastery. Artist Dates fire up the
imagination. They spark whimsy. They encourage play. Since art is about the
play of ideas, they feed our creative work by replenishing our inner well
of images and inspiration. When choosing an Artist Date, it is good to ask
yourself, “what sounds fun?” — and then allow yourself to try it." - Julia Cameron, The Artist's Way
I have been going on "artist dates" for years. I love them. I am always so energized by the time and feeling. I have done everything from bookstore and library browsing, to garden picnics, nature center, and waterfall chasing. I love going to art museums, concerts, and even out to a fantastic meal or excellent cup of coffee.
Today was a day off mid week for a holiday here in Costa Rica acknowledging The virgin of Los Angeles. I decided it was a good day for an adventure. I put on a swimsuit, sundress, and my "Barney bag" filled with a sketchbook, paint, pens, a towel, snacks, blackberry tea, and a soundtrack of a good audio book and music. I walked down to Nahomi, a park at the furthest point of town. This place is beautiful! It is a little peninsula on the Pacific ocean with coves of beautiful rocks, trees, flowers, and wildlife on either side. The water here is a wonder to me. At times it is deepest of jade green/blue and others a clear turquoise or deep Cobalt. I am in awe of the cactus, coconut palms lining the edge to the park, the Sloths and monkeys in the trees, the birds flying over, and the children playing in the waves.
After walking around taking it all in, I sat down and played in my sketchbook with watercolors and pens. Listening to the waves crash at my feet I painted the scene and my imagination. I listened to a chapter of a good book (Walking in this World, Julia Cameron) and sang along to one of my favorite records (Wonder, by Hillsong United ) I made a list of things I love about myself and my life and felt a little boast of confidence.
I spent a few hours here in this moment, like time was still. It started to rain so I danced in it and walked to the Marina with a man following me on a bicycle asking me questions. I am now sipping a iced moka and writing this before I start making lesson plans for my students this month, and meeting a friend for Indian food.
My "inner artist" is thanking me for today. I think I thrive with a slight change up of routine to explore and imagine and play. To be in awe for a moment and aware of my surroundings. To be spontaneous gives Joy to my heart and helps me breathe a little easier.
I hope you are reading this inspired to start your own process of dates with yourself. Happy Adventuring. ❤