20 ideas for an artist date

Going on an artist date can seem like a BIG commitment. I don't have time, I hear you scream. Here is a way that allows you ever so gently to give yourself ideas and the time to explore them.

OK. So now let’s get down to it. This exercise originated in The Artist’s Way and I’m going to share it with you as it’s very simple but very revealing.

Write 20 things you like to do. Write them fast and furious. Don’t stop to think. Write down even some of the craziest ideas and don’t hold back.

Here’s mine:

  1. Baking focaccia with olives.
  2. Eating popcorn.
  3. Walking near water.
  4. Sketching outdoors.
  5. Planting seeds.
  6. Buying new art materials.
  7. Doing a YouTube yoga lesson.
  8. Creating a patchwork cover by hand using old tea towels.
  9. Tidying and decluttering my clothes.
  10. Visiting an ancient house and gardens.
  11. Rearranging furniture for a new outlook.
  12. Reading a book in the bath.
  13. Afternoon tea with friends.
  14. Drinking coffee in a London cafe
  15. Walking on a sunny day around Harrogate.
  16. Walking with a group of dogs.
  17. Wearing scarves.
  18. DIY and interior design.
  19. Going somewhere new.
  20. Riding my bike on a quiet road.

From this list, pick two of your favourites and put a date next to them of when you last did them. Has it been quite a while? Make it your goal to do them this week. This list is a great resource for artist dates.

You can visualise the list in your art journal. I used a combination of paint, gel pens and collage to illustrate my list and then picked out one or two that appealed to me the most and did them as artist dates.

Look for windows of time just for you, and use them in small creative acts. Get to the record store at lunch hour, even if only for fifteen minutes. Stop looking for big blocks of time when you will be free. Find small bits of time instead.

Julia Cameron, The Artist’s Way p.57


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