3/6/07

The Joy of Creativity


Tonight I have been working on a talk I am giving at my PEO meeting Wednesday night, called "The Joy of Creativity". Below is what I am going to talk about.




The Joy of Creativity

In the summer of 2005, I ended my career as a reporter to take some time to start writing a book, a historical fiction novel about the Silver Valley.
To help with this process, I formed a group of women that gather together on a monthly basis to help me with this process.
It is not a writing group. It is creative group.
The purpose of the group is to help me with the creative process of writing my book, and to encourage one another in each others creativity.
I had a group of women I originally asked to join, and then other creatives asked others to join our monthly gatherings.
We are called the “Canyon Creek Creatives” because we originally met in a small house overlooking Canyon Creek up Burke Canyon outside of Wallace.
And we all have different ways we express our creativity. These include writing, drawing, painting, photography, graphic design, book making, music and Native American Bead Work.
Since our beginning in the fall of 2005, we have seen the following:
*A retired school teacher stretching her wings by returning to college at NIC and getting her associate arts degree so she can become a graphic artist.
*A single business woman in Wallace learning to enjoy meals at home by herself by taking the time to set the table and doing little things to make it an enjoyable experience.
*A teacher who loves to write, cook and bake, taking some of her special recipes and writing stories about them in a type of memoir recipe book.
*A woman with a dream of becoming a musician who learned to play the stand up bass and now entertains others in a blue grass band.
*A Reiki healer who writes a newsletter each month, and also designed a web page.
*A librarian who learned to use glue stick for the first time.
*My former babysitter, and mother of one of my best friends growing up, has found her voice as a poet.
*And myself, who has started and continues to write the book, has written a melodrama that will be performed this summer in Wallace at the Sixth Street Melodrama, am currently designing a website for my workplace, and have started a daily blog, which incorporates my writing, my photography, and my love of history.
We meet monthly and share about our creative endeavors and encourage one another. We have met at the Cataldo Mission and sat outside on tables and created. We had one of our creatives put on a writing workshop. We have made books. We have laughed together. We have cried together. We are sparked by each others creativity and creative thinking.
We use a book by Julia Cameron titled “The Sound of Paper: Starting from Scratch” that gives different creative exercises to complete. Each month we have a different exercise to help in our creativity.
In the first part of this book, title “In Your Backpack”, Cameron gives three creative tools that should be undertaken and continued each day.

MORNING PAGES: Morning Pages are the pivotal tool of a successful creative life. They are three pages of longhand, morning writing, about anything and everything.

ARTISTS DATES: The Artist Date is a once-a-week, festive outing undertaken and executed solo. You choose an expedition that enchants you, one that truly interests your inner explorer.

WALKS: The third pivotal creative tool is one that links together mind and body. This tool is walking. A 20 minute walk is long enough. Walking nudges us out of our habitual thinking. It builds bridge to higher consciousness. It allows us to access our intuition, to focus on solutions rather than problems.

Cameron also writes in her book “The Artist’s Way” how “the following spiritual principles are the bedrock on which creative recovery and discovery can be built. Read them once a day, and keep an inner ear cocked for any shifts in attitudes or beliefs.”

Basic Principles:
1. Creativity is the natural order of life. Life is energy: pure creative energy.
2. There is an underlying, in-dwelling creative force infusing all of life -- including ourselves.
3. When we open ourselves to our creativity, we open ourselves to the creator's creativity within us and our lives.
4. We are, ourselves, creations. And we, in turn, are meant to continue creativity by being creative ourselves.
5. Creativity is God's gift to us. Using our creativity is our gift back to God.
6. The refusal to be creative is self-will and is counter to our true nature.
7. When we open ourselves to exploring our creativity, we open ourselves to God: good orderly direction.
8. As we open our creative channel to the creator, many gentle but powerful changes are to be expected.
9. It is safe to open ourselves up to greater and greater creativity.
10. Our creative dreams and yearnings come from a divine source. As we move toward our dreams, we move toward our divinity.
I believe living the creative life is the best life possible. And creativity is an ongoing process we encounter in our lives. We can always become both larger and stronger. It is my hope that you will consider yourself on an open-ended adventure. And however you express your creativity, try doing it on a daily basis to enrich your life and make it more fulfilling for you and those around you.


Following the talk, I am going to give each woman present a bookmark with one of the following Julia Cameron quotes on it:


Mystery is at the heart of creativity. That, and surprise. Julia Cameron

The creative process is a process of surrender, not control. Julia Cameron

Each of us has an inner dream that we can unfold if we will just have the courage to admit what it is. And the faith to trust our own admission. The admitting is often very difficult.

Julia Cameron

I have learned, as a rule of thumb, never to ask whether you can do something. Say, instead, that you are doing it. Then fasten your seat belt. The most remarkable things follow.

Julia Cameron




4 comments:

raymond pert said...

bravo!

InlandEmpireGirl said...

This is very well done. I wish I could hear your talk. I also wish you would have posted this a few days ago and i could have used it for my workshop Friday!(:. I believe yours is much more interesting.

Katrina said...

After reading your blog, and your sister's, and your brother's, I am convinced you come from a most remarkable family.

I am going to check out the books you mentioned! I think your talk will go wonderfully well.

Silver Valley Girl said...

Yes, the talk went well. Living the creative life has become quite a passion for me. Another book I would suggest reading is Madeleine L'Engles "Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art". She is my favorite author, and I love everything she has written. Her Crosswicks Trilogy are three of my favorites.