The Artists Way is a bestseller when it comes to sparking your creativity. At first, the book was self-published but after it was very well received it was republished in 1992 this time by a publisher. Many artists swear by this book. It has helped many find their creativity and awaken the artist in them that had been suppressed along the way.
The book takes the reader through a 12-week journey to find their creative selves again. Following is The Artists Way summary that will take you through what you expect in all the 12 weeks of reading this book and using it as a guide.
Spiritual Electricity The Basic Principles – this part of the book is about spirituality and finding your spiritual electricity. This spiritual electricity is highly linked to your creativity. When you have found your spiritual electricity, you will be able to concur any fears that limiting beliefs in the creative process.
In essence, you become a free spirit yourself that is allowed to venture anywhere. You will also see the universe in a whole new light. You will become more in sync with it and will sense the cues it sends your way every so often because everything you need for your creativity, the universe has it.
The Basic Tools – this chapter is about the two pivotal tools she uses to help you find your creativity; the morning pages and the artist’s date. The morning pages are not meant to be art, and there is no wrong way of doing it. Nothing is too bad or stupid to be on the morning pages.
You can put anything you like. Write if you are a writer or draw if you like it. No one reads the morning pages but you. For the first 8 weeks, you also don’t read them. Just write what comes to mind and put the paper in an envelope. You never skip the morning pages whether you are in the mood to write or not.
The other tool is the artist’s date. It is a diversion meant to nurture your creative consciousness. You take only yourself to this date and let your inner creative child be wild and free. You take your artist out, and you pamper them so they can perform better for you the next time.
Week 1: Recovering a Sense of Safety – This week is all about approaching your creativity without fear. “To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.” In this week you will learn how to crawl before you can walk so you will walk with a sense of safety.
Week 2: Recovering a Sense of Identity – to really find your creativity, you have to define who you are. This week is about self-definition and establishing your needs, desires, interests, and boundaries.
Week 3: Recovering a Sense of Power – this week is about breaking your limits. You are taking power back into your hands. It is an inspiring week with a mix of emotions. To really exercise your power you need to have spiritual openness.
Week 4: Recovering a Sense of Integrity – in this week you start to check on yourself. This week is about introspection and self-awareness. You identify and differentiate the real feelings that you keep secret and the official feelings that you display to the public.
Week 5: Recovering a Sense of Possibility – the possibility is enormous, but most people have limited growth because they allow others to constrict their achievements. In this week you learn of the possibilities and how you can achieve your maximum potential. Do not set limits on yourself.
Week 6: Recovering a Sense of Abundance – the universe is abundant, and everything you need it can provide for you including money. In this chapter, you will learn how your attitudes limit your abundance and luxury in your present life. You will learn how creativity, God and money relate.
Week 7: Recovering a Sense of Connection – here the teachings help you to connect with your personal dreams. You learn how to get back to your interests by learning to be receptive and active (connecting) with your inner self.
Week 8: Recovering a Sense of Strength – many artists lose their way because they are not strong. As an artist, you should learn to turn your losses into strengths, take criticism positively, surround yourself with people who respect you and never be afraid to take the initiative.
Week 9: Recovering a Sense of Compassion – many artists face an emotional block to achieving their creativity. These emotions are usually from past failures. Many artists find themselves developing fear, shame and lack of enthusiasm. This chapter covers how to fight these internal blocks and relearn.
Week 10: Recovering a Sense of Self Protection – creativity is spiritual and therefore you must let the energy of God flow through you. Many artists have set up blocks to protect themselves from letting go and being vulnerable. People hide in workaholism, fame, and competition.
Week 11: Recovering a Sense of Autonomy – to be fully autonomous as an artist you must learn to accept who you are and nurture your artistic side. When you accept yourself as an artist and know that success is continuous, you will never become complacent. You will keep nurturing the artist in you becoming autonomous.
Week 12: Recovering a Sense of Faith – this last week is all about accepting that creativity is spiritual in nature and having trust that you will make it. “Adventures don’t begin until you get into the forest. That first step is an act of faith.”
What I Like About the Book
I like that this book is written in the form of a guide. It will take you 12 weeks to read the book entirely if you follow the guide that comes with it. You are required to read only one chapter in a week and then perform a series of given exercises along the way.
The book is crafted in a way to keep you grounded when you follow the guide while still ensuring that you enjoy your life too and take cues from what you enjoy doing. This is achieved through the morning pages where you write 750 words every morning and the artist’s date where you reward yourself every week by doing what you love doing.
Why You Should Read the Book
This book will help you awaken the artist in you that disappeared when you lost your path to fit in society and maybe family demands. This book is a guide that you follow over a period of 12 months to awaken the artist in you. You will learn to see the ideas that are already out there in the universe and how you can take them and help them grow. Whether you are an artist, poet, writer, musician or screenwriter, this book is for you.