Daily Rituals by Mason Curry – Lessons Learned from How Artists Work

This book showcases predominantly male artists/writers/creatives, but I’ve decided to share with you a few of the rituals of the women included, and reflect on what we can learn from their daily routines.

 

Daily Rituals: How Artists Work by Mason CurryMason Curry has put together a collection of the daily routines and rituals of 161 artists in his book “Daily Rituals: How Artists Work.” Some commonalities among the personalities in his book are a dependance on coffee or other stimulants, and either an affinity for working very early or very late. This book showcases predominantly male artists/writers/creatives, but I’ve decided to share with you a few of the rituals of the women included, and reflect on what we can learn from their daily routines.

Lessons Learned from How Artists Work

Jane Austen, in her attempt to keep her identity as a writer a secret, wrote on snippets of paper in her sitting room that she would hide away between seat cushions when receiving visitors, or when servants entered.
Lesson: Don’t let interruptions stop you from picking the pen back up (figuratively or literally).

Patricia Highsmith (The Talented Mr. Ripley) created a ritual which involved writing on her bed surrounded by items – cigarettes and donuts among them – that brought her enjoyment. In this way she sort of tricked herself into working. She wrote prolifically and daily, so it must have worked.
Lesson: Build a ritual that brings you enjoyment, even though there is hard work involved.

For many years Toni Morrison had to write between being a mom and working two other jobs as an editor and professor. How’d she do it? Little socializing, early mornings and contemplating ideas during everyday tasks.
Lesson: You have to make priorities – after work drinks vs. working after work. Use your daily commute, and time during other monotonous tasks, to ideate.

Georgia O’Keefe began each morning watching the sun come up, followed by a walk in her tranquil New Mexico setting, before a day of painting . She ended each day with an early evening drive.
Lesson: Go for a walk. Soak up nature and make solitude your friend.

Alice Munro took almost 20 years to compile Dance of the Happy Shades. She monopolized on nap time and school hours to carve out time for her writing. When her children were older she rented an office for a while, but that space was also fraught with interruptions.
Lesson: Do what you can, when you can. Be in it for the long haul.

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Making a God’s Eye – Revisiting the Camp Classic

This week I’m revisiting a camp classic and making a God’s Eye. A God’s Eye, or Ojo de Dios to the Ancient Pueblo peoples, is a sacred yarn weaving. It may have been thought to provide sight into the unknown. Weaving a god’s eye is a contemplative practice, similar to making a mandala. You could even approach this as creating a yarn mandala. If you create your god’s eye with four, or more, sticks, it indeed becomes a sort of sacred circle.

Materials needed: dowels or sticks, ruler, pencil, glue gun, yarn or fibers of your choice

Measure the dowels, mark the centres and glue to make a cross

Cross the thread diagonally several times, making an x, to cover the centre

Move the yarn over and around each dowel

Keep going with one set,or add another set of dowels to your design

Keep going with one set,or add another set of dowels to your design

Move the yarn across diagonally

Try wrapping the yarn from under instead of over

Wrap around going over again

Wrap around and up each stick individually

Wrap from under again. Try wraping over and skipping every other dowel

Making a God's Eye - Final result

Making a God's Eye: Try experimenting with materials and scale

 

Did you have fun? What should we make next?

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Rediscover a camp classic with this god's eye tutorial. These are very much like making yarn mandalas