artist’s way, week one: artist date

Heart Stop Sign, photo/copyright: Carly Swenson 2011
Heart Stop Sign, photo/copyright: Carly Swenson 2011

An important part of The Artist’s Way is setting up a weekly solo artist date. This consists of two hours a week for just the artistic me, a sort of solitary-play-date-for-creative-adults.

For my first artist date, I did something that wasn’t particularly impressive or interesting–but it was something I’ve been intending to do for a couple of months now.  The city of Praia de Vitoria has many street signs that have been tagged with these delightful vinyl heart stickers. They make me smile every time I see one.

And of course, every time I see one, I think to myself–I really need to bring my camera down here—and just wander around and photograph these.  So–I finally did that.  It was a simple date, but enjoyable.

I also bought a cup of coffee at a little café–alone.  That probably doesn’t sound like much to a normal well adjusted person. However, for carly-i’m-irrationally-scared-of-life-and-trying-anything-new-on-my-own-ever sitting alone in a café eating or drinking, was very much out of my comfort zone. But I did it anyway—and I am glad I did, because it was a wonderful reminder to take those regular small steps beyond what I’m used to.

Hearts, digital photo manipulation, 2011
Hearts, digital photo manipulation, 2011

8 responses to “artist’s way, week one: artist date”

  1. I absolutely believe in the Artist’s Date! My first one revealed how guilty I feel doing something totally ‘self-indulgent’. Wrong mind-set of course as it’s about re-filling one’s well of images. I see you brought back a ‘bucket-ful’.


    • I didn’t feel too guilty because I don’t have kids and I only work part time, so really it just gave me something constructive to do for two hours. I can see how it could certainly feel overly self-indulgent though. I am afraid as the weeks progress though, I will struggle to come up with ideas for my dates.


  2. I don’t have kids either. Guilt was one of my personal issues that was highlighted or perhaps flushed out into the open by the Artist’s Date. Hope I didn’t even accidentally suggest it should be yours!

    Once, I took my camera round bits of Paris taking pictures of anything with leaves on them. It was great fun.


    • Ah! I can see that. No, no–I wasn’t under the impression that you were suggesting anything. No worries. When I was last in Paris I took a bunch of images of street art that I found around Montmartre. That made me happy. I love Paris so much.


  3. The stickers are great and I love the idea of an artists day.

    For several years my artistically inclined friends and I would always meet up on Friday afternoons in this giant white house and just work on assorted creative projects until it eventually transformed itself into a party.

    I know we are strangers but I’m so proud of you.


    • That means a lot to me–seriously, thank you.

      I know a lot of photographers here, but not many hands on-paint/glue/etc artists for actually get together and have play dates. I used to do that more in college, I remember it being very enjoyable and inspiring.


    • I could totally see that. Especially with something like a museum or gallery. It is fun to share the artsy-ness with others–but I understand how there is a benefit of forcing myself to do it alone.


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