Creative Living with Jamie Episode 281:
Plan Your Creative Season – a Mini Creative Workshop
Every season I love to make a plan for my artistic pursuits. I thought it would be fun for us to do this together and so I made this short planning video for you! I hope it nourishes your creative fire this season!
Take It to Your Journal
Here are the core journal questions from today’s episode.
- What interests you creatively right now?
- What projects have been calling you?
- What would you like to learn?
- What is a guiding word that would represent the kind of season that you want to have?
Resources & Mentions
- Embracing Yourself as an Artist
- You’ve Got Nerve (s) (Being a Highly Sensitive Creative)
- During Dark Times, How Do We Keep Showing Up?
- Join the Studio and get first notice (and a discount) for Journal Club – plus get access to 5 free Creative Practice Workshops absolutely free.
- Devotion. It’s time to be the artist you were always meant to be.
Welcome to Creative Living with Jamie. I’m your guide Jamie Ridler and on this podcast you and I are going to go on a great many adventures together. We’ll explore all aspects of what it means to live a creative life and we’ll embrace ourselves as artists. We’ll get curious, will wonder and we’ll follow inspiration. We’ll wrestle with tough questions and we’ll brave challenges and sometimes will ask our friends for help. Along the way we will discover our courage, our confidence, ourselves and one another. We’ll come to know our artistic hearts and from there we will create. And that’s when the magic happens.
Hey there. It’s Jamie from Jamie Ridler Studios and I’m so glad to be here with you today for what is my very first ever crossover episode where I am attempting, hopefully successfully, to both share on video for YouTube and also to make this a part of my podcast.
And if you didn’t know the Creative Living with Jamie podcast is back. We’ve got a reboot. It’s kind of like Creative Living with Jamie 2.0. So far we’ve done an episode on embracing yourself as an artist, one on being a highly sensitive creative and also, how to show up to your creative work and your life when things all around you are so very hard.
If you haven’t listened to any of those yet, I hope you check that out on Spotify, on Apple Podcasts, wherever you would- with whatever podcast catcher you use. I hope you check it out.
Today I want to share with you something special. I wanted to make this a special episode. I want us to do something together like a mini workshop about planning your creative season. This is a bit of a take on what I do with my Devotion artists. Devotion is a program where I invite in a group of artists to spend their season immersed in their creative work. They learn the principles of devotion. They learn the practices of Devotion and they really have a beautiful season immersed in their own creative expression and really embodying what it means for them to be an artist. This is a bit of a take on what we do.
One of the things we do in that program is create a curriculum for ourselves, so really design what we want to learn and do and create during the season ahead. I’m going to give you a little taste of that, so that you can really make the most of this creative season.
The first thing I want to do is (and this is something I do in all my classes) I just want to shift the energy. I want us to really arrive and be present with our creative hearts, with one another and with this work. I do that by light. I’ve got the twinkie lights on. It’s very bright here today, so maybe you can’t tell. I also do that by lighting a candle. Today I’m using my beautiful Star candle to invoke that energy of guiding the way. We’re going to give ourselves a true north.
The next thing I want you to do is to imagine a container of time. I am going to suggest a season. I find that 12 weeks is such a great amount of time to really make progress, to get things done but not so much that it feels like it’s forever.
And so, I’m going to talk as though the season is what we’re all doing, twelve weeks of a season is what we’re all doing, but you can adjust that to work in whatever feels like the right rhythm for you. Let’s imagine that we’re starting to plan what our creative season is going to look like.
You know what I’m going to say next.
Grab a journal.
We creatives always have a journal nearby or it doesn’t have to be a journal. It can be what I always say in the studio: something to write with and something to write on. It doesn’t have to be precious. This is kind of like sketching out a plan. It is sketching out a plan.
So the first question I want you to answer is what interests you creatively right now?
What interests you creatively right now?
Just let it pour out of your heart and just let the pen keep moving. Let some words stumble out until I ask you the next question.
What interests you creatively right now?
Maybe it’s just one thing and you’re very clear, and that’s cool too. Just hang on there until I come to the next question. Or it can be all the things that’s fine too. Just tell the truth.
What projects have been calling you? What projects have been calling you? What things have you been wanting to make?
What would you like to learn? I know we creatives are lifelong learners. What is it you’d like to learn?
And then lastly, what is a guiding word that would represent the kind of season that you want to have? Do you want to have a playful season? Do you want to have a sacred season? Do you want to have a productive season? Have you decided? Spend some time on it. You can always put me on pause if you need more time to think about it. What kind of season do you want to have?
Okay, now look at all this wonderful stuff and think about the time container that you have created. Start to pull some things, maybe the things that grab your eye. It doesn’t have to be one thing. We are multi passionate creatives. It doesn’t have to be just one thing or it could be if you’re like, “This is my season of writing my novel and I want it to be everything!” Then do that.
It’s kind of like you have a canvas and you’re pulling on the just right amount of stuff. You want to leave some white space. You want to have some variety, some dynamics. You’re designing your creative season and so you know how Full or spacious you would like it to be and what might marry well together.
know I like to have something like that I’m very devoted to that really is my core project, but I also want to have something that feels… I usually have something core for the studio. Then I want to have something for me and then I want to have something playful. So I might pick three things that have those three focuses.
So just start to play. What if you were creating a beautiful curriculum for your season? What do you think might work on it, being respectful of how much time and energy you have and that exists.
And if something new that wasn’t on your list comes to your mind, that’s totally cool. You can include that.
I know it’s hard to choose, but one of the reasons working with the season is so great is you know, okay, this season I’m going to work on. I might choose learning how to make prints, sewing and my garden and then in fall or the next season I can make entirely new choices and get to the other things that are in my idea bank. That’s the other thing I want you to know now. Once you’ve chosen your two or three or whatever feels right to you, as new ideas come up, have a way to capture them. Have a little treasure box of all the creative projects, the creative ideas you want to pursue, all of the creative skills you want to develop. Then at the beginning of each season you can just go into that treasure box and go, “Right. Oh, this one feels really alive for me right now, and this one too. And oh, you know what? I’m not actually interested in that one anymore. I’m going to chuck it.”
It will give you a framework, a time where you choose, create focus, immerse yourself in that creative process, come to completion, and then choose again.
So, you’ve chosen some creative projects for the season. And if you haven’t, it’s okay. Keep noodling. Keep feeling your way into it. Make a commitment to something and live with it for a couple of days and see if it feels right. Don’t– If we just sit there going, “I wish I had everything. I want to do it all.” what ends up happening (you know already) we do none of it!
And remember, promise yourself, “Hey I can come back and choose again at the end of this season. So all of you darlings, I’m coming back I promise. But for this season. I’m going to play with you and you and you and it’s going to be awesome!”
So once you’ve made your choices, I want you to be able to set yourself up for success, and there are a couple of things to think about.
One is the physical reality of this choice. What do you need? What are the supplies you need? What are the tools you need? What’s the environment you need? How much space do you need? Can you set up a dedicated space? If you can’t, how can you make it easy to pull it up and tear it down and pull it up and tear it down?
If you think about that at the beginning of this season, you’re setting yourself up for a beautiful flow and making it easier for you to come to the work. That onramp always matters. So often we have creative ideas we want to pursue and we just never get to them. By making an easier and easier on-ramp, it’s more likely to happen.
So think about the physical realities, tools, supplies, space.
Also, think about temporal realities. What time can you dedicate to these projects? I know we always want all the time. But what time reasonably can you dedicate this season? Is Sunday afternoons the time that you’re going to give for painting? Is half an hour of writing every weekday going to work for you? Is setting up the time something you want to have a conversation with someone else about so that the whole family or your partner holds that time sacred for you? Think about time.
These are the things these are two of the three things you can do to set yourself up for success.
The third thing I invite you to do to set yourself up for success is to think about your energy management. We love our creative pursuits and they fill us up. They give us so much, but they also ask us to pour in energy, time, persistence, all sorts of things. All of our great ideas, all of our magic comes out of this corporeal being that we are.
So how can you take care of this sweet artist that you are? What do you need? Do you need more vegetables? (That’s a good one for me. I always need more vegetables.) Do you need more water? Do you need more sleep? Do you need meditation time where you just let yourself have a break from all the thoughts that are in your head? What about journaling? Sometimes that can not only help you dump all those thoughts onto the page, but also help you see nuggets of ideas. What can you do to nourish you?
Space, time and taking care of this: these are all the tools for setting you up for a great season of creative work.
So we set a magical container today by changing the energy and giving ourselves time to focus on a vision for the season ahead. We generated ideas and possibilities and then we started to choose what made sense in a container that we also chose, that makes sense to us. And we try, as in our art, we try to craft composition and balance. We’re trying to do that with our schedule. Then we know that we’re going to go ahead and create conditions of our success to make sure we have everything we need.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this mini planning workshop for your creative season. I hope it supports really some amazing flow and magic and possibility to come into your studio and remember your life is your studio. I hope you’ll come on by open thedoor.ca and check out all this on offer at Jamie Ridler Studios.
I’ve got journal Club coming up this summer. Yay! We spend an hour on Fridays together, much like this, journaling and thinking and diving deep into who we are and what is meaningful to us.
Also, Devotion. The current Devotion program is wrapping up for the winter. It will not be offered this summer, but it will be offered in the fall, so make sure you get on the wait list. It is limited enrollment, so get on the wait list now so you’ll get first notice when we are ready to start thinking about registration.
Thanks for spending this time with me today. It’s been a joy to spend it with you and have a great creative season.
I’ll talk to you soon.
Oh, and I almost forgot! I always do this when I sant things to keep on going! We want to release this magic to shift our energy back so we can go from our artistic, creative, sacred, visionary space back to our regular lives.
Bringing this energy with it, I am sending you all good wishes to your plans and imagining lots of magic taking hold.