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Posts Tagged ‘daily ritual’

The Ten-Minute Sabbatical

07 Oct

This fall I am fortunate to be the 2011 Artist in Residence at Mammoth Cave National Park.

Residency programs are the sabbaticals of the art world. They can range from a month to a year and are a chance for an artist to step away from the trappings of daily life and focus on work. I don’t mean necessary day-job work, but real vocation, which most artists will say their art work represents.

I arrived at Mammoth Cave just a couple of days ago and am already starting to settle in… thinking about things differently. I am using my time here to research and to write, read, sketch as much as I can. Although this is what I do at home, there is a different mind set to this time here. Sure, a month is not a year, but it’s a month. A powerful paradigm shift can occur in a month.

What would happen if I took some time every week, say an hour, to consciously change my mind set? To think and write about broader goals in life and work, to sketch in my sketchbook. What about even 10 minutes? What if everyone did this? I like to think of this as a ten minute sabbatical.

No matter what job you do, whether artist or salesperson, scientist, teacher, or IT specialist – a small sabbatical of sorts can be just the thing to keep your life and goals on track. You may not have a year like Stefan Sagmeister, or a month like me, but you might just have ten minutes.

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‘Daydream’ on Purpose

14 Jun

I recently stumbled upon The Energy Project. They’re a cool bunch helping to redefine what it is to be productive at ‘work’.

I was browsing through their practical energy tips and saw our missions overlap with, “Daydream on Purpose.” Here’s what they have to say:

“Schedule at least one hour a week to brainstorm or strategize around some issue at work. You can help access your right hemisphere by doodling, daydreaming, or going for a long walk—anything that lets your mind wander. That’s when breakthroughs and spontaneous connections are most likely to occur.”

So go ahead… try it out, and daydream on purpose. You can see plenty of our tips on doodling, drawing, thinking on paper, daydreaming (whatever you’d like to call it…) in our blog under Practice.


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A drawing a day turns into a business.

10 Jun

Adam came across the Obsessive Consumption project recently on Twitter.  Kate Bingaman-Burt has been documenting her personal consumption habits for years by drawing everything she buys.  Over time, this self-processed obsession has become an entire line of graphic work that is now shown in galleries as fine art, published in books and even printed on pillows.  Her drawing work is sought after by companies such as IDEO, ReadyMade Magazing and the New York Times.   All this by drawing everyday.

Now mind you, she is a working artist, and many of you may not consider yourselves to be artists.  But the exercise of drawing daily can still be a valuable tool to tapping into your very own brand of creativity.   There is a wealth of research available out there about tapping into the right side of the brain which houses the more creative, holistic thinking processes.  Listening to music, going for a scenic drive or a long run, and of course, drawing, are all ways to tap the less used hemisphere of the brain.  Have a look at Bingaman-Burt’s work and be inspired to try documenting something in your own life.  You could doodle what you buy like she did, or the dogs you meet, like I often do.  Currently I am spending quite a bit of time in the garden trying to figure out if certain plants are flowers or weeds.  I was recently informed that the thistle-like flower I have been so keen on is actually a weed that will quickly push out all of my other plants.  So I pulled it up… but not before I did a quick sketch of it!

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