What I'm Reading | The Artist's Way

About a year ago, my creative friend Valerie gifted me with this book: The Artist's Way: A course in discovering and recovering your creative self by Julia Cameron.

It's been sitting on my shelf, ready for a moment when I need it.  Since coming back from quilt camp, I've been feeling pretty creatively blocked.  It's strange to me that after such a wonderful and inspiring week I haven't felt inclined to touch my sewing machine.

So I pulled this book off of my shelf, and started reading.  This passage really spoke to me:
Art is an image-using system.  In order to create, we draw from our inner well.  This inner well, an artistic reservoir, is ideally like a well-stocked trout pond.  We've got big fish, little fish, fat fish, skinny fish--an abundance of artistic fish to fry.  As artists, we must realize that we have to maintain this artistic ecosystem.  If we don't give some attention to upkeep, our well is apt to become depleted, stagnant, or blocked.
Any extended period or piece of work draws heavily on our artistic well.  Overtapping the well, like overfishing the pond, leaves us with diminished resources.  We fish in vain for the images we require.  Our work dries up and we wonder why, "just when it was going so well." The truth is that work can dry up because it is going so well.
As artists, we must learn to be self-nourishing.  We must become alert enough to consciously replenish our creative resources as we draw on them--to restock the trout pond, so to speak.  I call this process filling the well (20-21).
So I'm starting this twelve week course, guided by this book, to replenish my creative resources.

What do you do when you need to refill your well?


1 comment:

  1. I've had that book on my shelf for years (more than I'd like to admit) and have been meaning to read it/go through it all. You're inspiring me to get to it!

    When I need to "refill my well" I'll pull out some of my favorite inspiration books (filled with jewelry, art, or nature photographs and drawings), head to a museum, or just take some time off to relax and regroup.


Related Posts with Thumbnails