Saturday, 20 March 2010

discovering morning pages

I’ve heard the words “morning pages” and “artist’s date” from a Yahoo!Group I was a part of , but I must admit that I haven’t really paid much attention to them before; I always assumed that “morning pages” meant finding time in the morning to do pages and “artist’s date” being a thing to do or a place to go to encourage creativity.

Although I wasn’t too far off the mark with the artist’s date, I didn’t realise “morning pages” wasn’t just a flippant phrase, but an activity which means quite a lot to many people.

I’m sure most people who visit this page already know what “morning pages” and “artist’s date” are, so I won’t bore you with the details. For those who are new to the idea, please feel free to visit Julia Cameron’s website, where she has generously uploaded pages from her book, “The Artist’s Way that specifically describes what the two activities are.

Below is are the pages from my first attempt at doing morning pages (as I was using a Moleskine sketchbook, I counted a double page spread as one page). The first three pages were pre-background and I thought I would stop writing there. However I felt an urge to continue and boy was I glad I did.

morning pages

It could have been because of the backgrounds that were already laid out, or that I was slower to relax because it was my first try, but I only begun to let go on my fourth page. My handwriting started getting larger and messier until I no longer cared that I couldn’t read what I’ve written – it was all about letting it out. It was quite fun.

Those pages were done after I got home from work. As the point of the pages were for me to unload, I believe I had more to write about after work than if I wrote after waking up refreshed from a good night’s sleep. By doing my pages after I get home, I would have left my stressful work day behind me and free to get on to some creative stuff.

I’ve read elsewhere that doing the pages at the end of the day doesn’t work for them as they end up recording the events of the day which leaves them exhausted. I personally feel that by writing about the day, I would be able to put things into perspective. But everyone is free to do as they will. As Julia Cameron says, there’s no wrong way of doing it.

I know we aren’t meant to re-read our morning pages, nor are we to share them (to avoid feeling the need to censor our pages), that’s why I kept the pictures small. But anyone else want to share their experiences with morning pages?

10 comments:

  1. I've done morning pages in periods and I think it's a great way to start they creative day. I hope you'll enjoy continuing to write and explore. Get Julia's book too, it has lots of more info than the webpage!

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  2. I've had great experiences with mp's too (although, i usually did them in the afternoon and still got a lot out of the process!) :-)

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  3. I found them to be a waste of time for me. I have done them during two periods of time about 10 years apart but all they do is wear me out. I do much better just wandering the quiet house with a cup (or two or three...) before my husband wakes up. That's where my thoughts really wander, solve some art problems or come up with new ideas. You are right that we need to do whatever works for each of us. I would suggest that you buy a cheapo notebook for these pages rather than using the pricey moleskine if you plan to keep this up.

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  4. These are so wonderful! It's so important to just let the words "spill" out.
    Much Love

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  5. @iHanna yeah I plan on buying her book next month (spent too much money this month already), it seems to come highly recommended.

    @freebird After that first day I got out my scappy notebook to do my ranting, as you say it's quite a waste of good paper to do it on the moleskine...

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  6. Hi - I have been doing morning pages - in the morning - for nearly three years now and I wouldn't be with out them. I don't know how I processed my life before I did them so regulary. I will wake up earlier in the morning if I have to to get them done. Some days I just whitter around and don't write anything that seems remotely useful, other times they are dynamite and I shoot through something that I would, in the past, have been stuck on for weeks. Anything by Julia Cameron is worth reading. One of the other books she has written is called Vein of Gold, which I describe as The Artists Way on steriods.

    I found you on the Creative Every Day web site I have just signed up.
    Love Rosie

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  7. @Rosie - Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment! I've also had days when there doesn't seem to be anything useful written in the morning pages and it's nice to know that it's normal. I'm really going to look forward to getting The Artist's Way.

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  8. @Leah - sorry I didn't see your comment till now. Do you find that you end up recording the events of the day when you don't do morning pages in the morning?

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  9. Love my morning pages:) Wonderful that you are finding your way with them!
    Enjoy!

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  10. @organicsyes - I find that the morning pages journaling make a very nice first layer for my backgrounds, although I find it both liberating and a shame to have to cover up some of the words

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