Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The Artist's Way Week Four: Recovering a Sense of Power

We always begin our weekly sessions with some sort of stretching or breathing exercises, usually led by me. Last night I turned over this activity to the group, asking each woman to lead a stretch. Well, these women know how to boogey! The first woman, "K," led us in some gentle standing lunges, followed by another "K," who led us in some nice spine stretches. Then "A" jumped into action and had us all doing the Hokey Pokey, right up to putting our head in and shakin' it all about. Not to be outdone, "L" taught us the Time Warp dance from the Rocky Horror Picture Show and we were rockin' the living room. To bring us back to reality, "B" had us sit back down and do some gentle arm and neck stretches, which helped us get focussed and ready for our evening.

Our creative activity for the night was making a Life Map, also known as a "geography of self." (A fun book that goes along with this theme is Katharine Harmon's Personal Geographies and Other Maps of the Imagination.) Each woman was encouraged to think about some of the events which have occurred in their life and then translate those events into some sort of map, or personal geography, using any vehicle they wanted, i.e., a geographical map, a house, DNA, a bus route, a game board . . . I supplied the women with watercolor paper, water colored pencils, oil pastels, and a fun assortment of colored pens and they were free to do their map using any and all of these materials. Their results were astounding, reflecting their diverse and creative approach to this assignment.

Something I have added to this Creative Cluster, is I am having each woman take a piece from the center piece each week so they can build a shrine at home as a reminder, or monument, of this weekly process. The first week they each took a rock, the second week a shell, the third week they chose a Scrabble tile, and last night they each got to take a word of their choice from the dish of poetry beads spread across the plate. One woman was absent last night, "S," so each of the women chose a word for "S" and when she returns next week, she can choose from the five words specially selected for her. I think the ladies are enjoying this added feature of the Creative Clusters.


gl. said...

ooo, i've done that! it's fun.

i like the taking stuff home idea: i've thought about doing it but never had a good system to -regularly- do it, so i like making it a part of the centerpiece.

Dayna Collins said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dayna Collins said...

gl - The ladies have been very enthused about getting to take a momento home with them each week . . . and I have something very exciting planned for them when I use sand as the centerpiece!