Planning Your Next Artist's/Writer's Retreat -- From the Dancefloor to the Balcony

I like to study the faces of my beloveds when they're interacting with each other, or looking at me.

I don't like the way some digital cameras, even the good ones, distort or limit what's really there.

I like to see not just what the camera sees...but what's happening...and what it means...and not just what it means to me.

For your Journal/Creative Writing: Take pictures of one entire day, weekend, or week.  If you have a camera and want to use it to accompany your journal entries, do. 

With the camera or just with your mind, frame each picture like a camera's lense.  Describe the details, everything, just as a camera would see it.  Be objective.

Then, go beyond the frame and deeper than. Tell about each picture...from your heart.  Now you're being subjective as you want to be...or as you can. 

I call this going from the dancefloor to the balcony.  One moment, you're part of what's happening.  The next, you're apart from it, taking it in from a much wider perspective, with a great panoramic lense...telling not just what you see, but seeing beyond it, and seeing what it means.

With practice, you can do both at the same time.  It's like driving in traffic...and being a tiny hummingbird hovering, or a great blue heron flying above your own car...what's going on in your mind and heart, in the noise and the smoke, and far beyond it.

The trick or key is, never to stay just on the dancefloor...and never to stay just up in the balcony.  For a full life of learning, growth, and creativity that is both meaningful and rich in the textures of your relationships (with God or Creation, Self, and Others) and experiences (here, within, beyond), you want to be able to have a balance of both, you want to be able to go back and forth from the the the the balcony.  So, in due time, you can experience everything, not just in one dimension, or two, or even three...but in four...going wide and deep, all at the same time...all the time.  This practice gives you the seasoned painter's perspective of the take a photo that is at once so pure and complex, that the viewer sees the tendrils of the vines, the pearls of dew collecting there, and inhales the fragances of the grapes, the richness of the earth, the transcendence of the mist, and wealth beyond and within every grape and hillside.

The gift of this retreat, this practice of moment to moment precision and the transformation you experience and may facilitate for others along the way.