Monday, March 15, 2010

The Artist's Way - Week Nine

"Magic Moment" 2010
Acrylic & Acrylic Mediums, 24x24"

Nine weeks into Julia Cameron’s 12-week course outlined in her book The Artist’s Way and I’m exhausted! Instead of “recovering a sense of compassion” this week, I spent every free waking minute working on a new painting for the next Fine Arts Ministry juried art show at Mile Hi Church in Lakewood, Colorado.

My morning pages fell to the wayside as I laid down a layer of paint upon waking each morning. Lunch was spent driving 30 minutes round trip from work, to home, and back to work again just so I could put down yet another layer of paint during the remaining 30 minutes of my mid-day break. Painting was also the first thing I did when I got home from work each day and the last thing I did before collapsing into bed each night.

Was neglecting my morning pages, failing to do any of the weekly exercises, and abandoning this week’s solo artist date worth it? Perhaps I will think so if my piece is selected for the show. But I won’t know until Friday. In the meantime, my exhaustion is accompanied by self-criticism and I have lost perspective as to whether or not my new painting has any merit. All I can see when I look at it is what I would do differently if I had more time.

There is that word again: time. The only thing I managed to do this week regarding The Artist’s Way, in addition to reading chapter 9, was take a quick glance at some of my earlier morning pages. When I was still writing morning pages! A consistent theme I saw was my perception that I don’t have enough time to do all the things I need and want to do.

Despite my looming deadline, I made time this weekend to attend Rev. Cynthia James workshop “What Will Set You Free” and Jennifer Burnett’s concert at Jazz @ Jacks in Denver, in addition to starting and finish a new painting. That is, if you call running out of time and being forced to accept that it’s the best I could do with the resources I had available to me as finishing. Just don’t get me started on the dirty laundry that has pilled up next to the mountain of unopened mail and sticky note reminders that I need to pay bills, get an oil change, and do my taxes.

Check back next week as I embark on chapter 10 of Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way, “recover a sense of self-protection,” and resume my daily morning pages, weekly exercises, and solo artist date.


  1. Keep breathing, Marcella. Maybe this week is JUST what's needed for next week's recovery of self-protection to really pack a punch!

    I can comisserate with you and am reminding myself to keep breathing, too.


  2. The painting evokes a sense of peace and the complexity of finding peace in the daily life; well that's what it does for me.