Every artist needs some space to get out of their own head and their comfort zone. And when I find myself feeling stuck or stagnant, I peruse my personal list of ideas for artist dates, and schedule myself a date posthaste!

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If you’re not familiar, an artist date comes from The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. The book is a 12-week program to help heal art scars and create a routine to make you feel more creative and grounded in the work you do. I vlogged my way through it back in 2020.

Do I recommend The Artist’s Way? Yep.

Is it a super easy thing to get through? Not even a little bit.

But if you’re in a place with your creative work where you want a little more personal accountability and what kind of feels like therapy for your creative self, you’re going to love it.

So, find a season in your life when you have a 12 weeks you can devote to the process. You’ll still have time for real life stuff, but you’ll need a few hours each week to complete the necessary activities.

The Artist’s Way Activities

Whether you’re going through the book or not, there are always tons of things for artists to do. So don’t feel obligated to try this if your creative plate is full and you’re struggling to keep up. Again, I always recommend you try this during a season when you know you’re going to have some time.

There are some non-negotiable activities you complete as you go through the program: morning pages, artist dates, and the weekly homework.

Morning Pages

I’ve written about morning pages before, and I think it’s a practice that can be helpful even when you’ve completed The Artist’s Way. Every morning, you write 3 pages by hand in a notebook. You put the pen to paper and you just keep going. It’s all free writing, so just write whatever comes to mind. It doesn’t matter what it is.

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You’re just getting your brain on paper and clearing your head before the day.

(Note: You can type or dictate these pages too. I know the old guard of writers say it’s not writing if you use a computer or a transcription app, but that’s ableist as hell, and I’m not down with that.)

Artist Dates

Each week, you’re assigned to go on an artist date. The idea behind it is you need something to give yourself room to play.

I like artist dates for a number of reasons. They clear your head, give you some space to decompress, and let you get away from the creative work you do.

Artist dates can be as big or small as you’d like. You’re just getting away once a week and doing something out of the ordinary.

(There are tons of ideas for artist dates below!)

Weekly Homework

At the end of each chapter in the book, there’s some homework. It’s not a ton, nor is it anything that would require you to do school-style homework.

It’s mostly activities that reinforce the ideas in the chapter, and all of it is very introspective and chill.

But beware! Some of the homework is maybe a bit more soul searching than we typically enjoy, and for that, I recommend you give yourself the time you need to complete it.

Ideas for Artist Dates

I’ve written about artist date ideas before, and it’s something that I truly enjoy coming up with. The Artist’s Way artist date ideas are fun to plan, and even more fun to partake in. I’ve create a few lists of ideas for artist dates in this post to help you plan out your next creative outing.

Artist Date Ideas at Home

If you prefer not to leave the house, or if you’re trying to avoid a global pandemic, there are tons of artist dates you can do at home. You may need to purchase a few things to complete these, but many of them you should be able to do without paying a dime.

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Outdoor Artist Dates

If you’re the fresh air type, then it’s time to step outdoors. These dates can mostly be done for free too!

Artist Date Ideas for Writers

Now, writers are a particular type of weirdo (I know because I am one) so it only makes sense that they would need a specific type of artist’s date. Here are some more bookish ideas.

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Got Other Ideas for Artist Dates?

There’s nothing quite like a good artist date. Gimme all your artist date ideas in the comments below! Bonus points for stuff I can do at home, and even more bonus points if they feel writerly!

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