Creativity Corner Vive La Différence

Vive La Différence – A Date with Myself

April 1, 2013

Happy easter monday everyone. I hope you’ve all had a most joyous time so far.

It’s vive la différence monday and today we have a special treat for you map fans out there. Let me introduce this months’ guest. Chi from 106 kids. Chi is a talented blogger and children’s wear designer.

For new readers:
The concept: each month i will invite one blogger. They will create and showcase one image. There are 20 themes and 20 objects my guest can choose from. They choose 1 theme and up to 3 objects. I will then also create an image based on their choice. Everyone has free reign on how to create the image. It can be simple photography, a line drawing, a collage, a hand painted image, a styled table top, the choice is yours! The fun part is that you guys will see 2 versions inspired by the same subject matter. There is no right or wrong. There’s just ‘different’.

Chi chose the theme: a date with myself with the object: maps. Here’s her take on this.


As a working mother of one (soon to be two!) I used to regard time alone as a luxury, a guilty pleasure even. Since discovering The Artist’s Way last year, I have begun to see things somewhat differently.According to its author, Julia Cameron, it is absolutely imperative that we – as innately creative beings – set aside a day a week in which to nuture the mind, body and soul of our inner artist child. Like all children, this one thrives on fun and frivolity.

I’ve recently been guilty of letting the so-called busy-ness of life get in the way of this soul-nourishing practice and so to get myself back on track (and for your delectaction) here is my fantasy date with myself.

I’d like to set the scene, if I may. I’d set off from the Northamptonshire countryside with The Gentlewoman – my new favourite magazine –  tucked reassuringly under my arm. The rousing strains of Rufus Wainwright’s Release The Stars would waft over me as I leafed through it, momentarily transporting me to another time and place …..

Vive la Différence - A date with myself - Chi Feasey

Having been a fan of The Artist’s Way myself for the past 20 years, I thought it might be fun to show you all the benefits and learnings i’ve taken with me since introducing the concept of a date with myself into my routine. I still regularly do them!

Here’s a little scenario:

I set off on my Vespa bright and early, having loosely decided on an area of london. Armed with a notebook and pen i might first chose a nice coffee place and consume some fresh mint tea or something similar. In the days of the paid Time Out i would now take a peak and see what exhibitions are on, what film is showing or what new shop has recently opened. These days you’ll find me carrying my camera in case of visual stimulation i can use for my blogging. The point of just ‘being’ somewhere, without a fixed agenda is to see where it all takes me. Sometimes i find myself talking to a stranger who will inspire me with a thought, a comment etc. Other times i will see something, whether on poster or in the street that will spark off an idea of where to go next. I always follow my gut instinct and i try not to look at my watch and be seduced by forward thinking and planning. I like the atmosphere to carry me along, listen to my thoughts and experience being in the moment. I can honestly say that every time i come back refreshed, with new knowledge and with some newly found creative ideas. Best of all, I have taken myself on a date and feel very cared for!

Vive la Différence - A date with myself - Tina Bernstein

Thank you chi for taking the time and enriching us with your map and journey.

Both chi and i were students at anne dietmeyer’s excellent class: map making: learn to communicate places beautifully I believe that anne is teaching this class again on 28th may. Get in touch with her if you’re interested. Both chi and i didn’t manage to submit any maps in time so this, anne, is for you from your loyal students. I cannot recommend her class enough. It’s full of amazing students, excellent resources and an ace teacher:-) Oh and skillshare is an excellent platform for learning. I am totally hooked!

Happy week everyone. It’s a short one. See you back here on thursday!

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  • Reply Prêt à Voyager / Anne April 1, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    Thanks so much for the sweet words, Tina! Love how you both pulled through 🙂 (Don’t worry, I finish most of my Skillshare classes 2 months after the fact!). And yes, it is true that I’m re-teaching it (same lectures) at the end of May (3 weeks). Sign up is open on the Skillshare website!

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 1, 2013 at 7:19 pm

      Thanks, Anne – see you in class! 😀

    • Reply tina April 2, 2013 at 5:13 pm

      Ha… this isn’t exactly the map I was going to do for your class. That’s reserved for when I enrol in May:-)

      I’m definitely hooked on skillshare. It is a fantastic platform with tons of resources and very affordable. Perfect!!!

  • Reply Holly April 1, 2013 at 7:05 pm

    Another great VLD! And this one has never been done before – maps! Both fabulous, and I love both your handwriting!!

    Tina, I LOVE going to the movies alone. Last one I saw was interesting because it was a french canadian film, filmed in Montreal. I wondered how many of the other 15 or so ppl in this theatre in Berlin were also from Montreal. Probably not many 😉 I liked that feeling … and it turned out to be a great film.

    Skillshare sounds pretty awesome, but I’ve never had the time to take a class…although I’m really debating the #designthyself class…anyone else thinking of taking it?

    Happy Monday to you Xx.

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 1, 2013 at 7:25 pm

      Thanks, Holly! 🙂
      I saw a movie on my own for the first time last year. I chose Rust and Bone – a great story/performances but a real tear-jerker. That said, I’m hooked but I’ll choose something more upbeat next time! 😀

    • Reply tina April 2, 2013 at 5:19 pm

      MAPS yay!! I was so disappointed that I couldn’t really partake in Anne’s Class that this here has somewhat alleviated the disappointment.

      I’m so glad Chi chose Maps… and I totally love hers!

      Going to the movies alone is one of my favourite secret past times. I love getting completely lost in the movie and always come out refreshed and inspired!
      I urge people to try it and unless you live in a village, there’s no real stigma to it. Lots of people go on their own. Of course, I combine it with a good dose of going to the cinema with friends etc.

      You must check out Skillshare. You can do homework in your own time and the resources and videos on teaching are worth every penny. The classes stay up on the platform so you can really finish stuff in your own time, even after the class ended!

      Must check out #designthyself xx

  • Reply Chi @ 106 April 1, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    I LOVE the contrast between our different perspectives (grasshopper and Zen Master). 😉
    In fact, yours is being printed off for my wall as we speak! 😀

    I must admit that I’ve always admired your willingness to talk to strangers – something I’m far too shy to do myself and really need to work on.

    This has been such fun and rewarding in so many ways. I’m so glad and honoured to have been a part of your wonderful blog if only for one day. xo

    • Reply tina April 2, 2013 at 5:25 pm

      Hello Grasshopper:-)

      Ha. Seriously. I’m flattered. I wanted to write more learnings on the map but knew I would overdo it and then have to start all over again. Happy I refrained!!:-)

      Talking to strangers, like everything else, is a matter of practice. I think it stems from the fact that I went to Boarding School when I was younger and have lived here in the UK without family ever since. You learn to rely on the extended world rather than only on your nearest and dearest. I’m also known to often talk to my fellow passengers on a plane and some friendships have come out of those:-))

      Aww, Chi, you always say the nicest things. I’m really glad you enjoyed this little exercise and the honour is all mine!!!

      Thank you for your hard work and choosing a subject close to my heart. xx

  • Reply Catherine Bedson April 2, 2013 at 7:17 am

    Priceless, what fabulous days both you and Chi planned for yourselves. I love going to the cinema alone also but haven’t done it for so long. You guys have inspired me to plan my own date very soon! Tina you must pop over to my blog to see my Skillshare project I’ve just posted about. LOVE Skillshare it’s the best!

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 2, 2013 at 2:04 pm

      Thanks, Catherine – happy to oblige! 🙂

    • Reply tina April 2, 2013 at 5:27 pm

      Yes, but we know you’re about to embark on a new life!!! The woman who is coming out of her shells, taking classes on Skillshare, posting videos, buying flowers at the flower market…. what next??

      I think you are doing incredible well right now with taking lots of risks and trying out new stuff. You can plan your date and see where it takes you. No hubby or kids though:-)) So proud of you!! x

      • Reply Catherine Bedson April 5, 2013 at 11:22 am

        Thanks Tina & Chi, I’ll have to make sure I plan it soon..can’t wait it’ll be fun!

  • Reply Michaela April 2, 2013 at 8:17 am

    What a lovely piece of writing!!!

    The idea with a date with yourself is a brilliant idea. I can’t tell you how much coffee shops, and mimbling about, listening to my fave music (I’m with Chi on Rufus Wainright – I love that voice!)

    I’m quite a home bird and a fairly intoverted person sometimes (although I can be incredibly noisey too), and I love just being on my own sometimes – I haven’t had children, but I wonder about how I’d actually cope with so little me time! Sounds like Chi has found a perfect balance, and how jealous am I about Skillshare – we don’t have many things like that in sunny Newbury, although there is a pottery course I really like the look of in Bermondsey! 🙂 xx

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 2, 2013 at 2:07 pm

      Thank you, Michaela – great to “meet” another Rufus fan! 🙂
      The beauty of Skillshare is that you can learn without leaving the house – in your pyjameas, if you so wish. 😀

    • Reply tina April 2, 2013 at 5:33 pm

      Oy! I’m also a fan of Rufus….. he has the most penetrating voice…

      When I first came across the book and the dates with yourself it opened up a whole you way of thinking for me. I am both an introvert and extrovert (most people are both, it depends on the percentage) but am often most happy in my own company. That does not mean staying at home, it means being out there with myself!.

      Why are you jealous about Skillshare? It’s an online platform with people taking part online from around the world! It’s amazing. Go and check it out and enrol in something that takes your fancy. Seriously it’s perfect fro people who don’t necessarily live in a big city with big learning opportunities. Furthermore, the level is really high and the resources priceless!!!! xx

      • Reply Michaela April 3, 2013 at 8:01 am

        Wow cheers Tina – I thought it was a London thing – which is fab but I can’t alway get to something if it’s on a regular basis. PS, are you going to either Pulse or Clerkenwell design Week in May – would be great to catch up?!!

        …am off to check out the Skillshare site properly 🙂 xx

      • Reply Michaela April 3, 2013 at 8:31 am

        Just found this which I think I’m going to do!! Hurrah!
        Thanks ladies you’ve made my day! 🙂

        • Reply tina April 3, 2013 at 7:53 pm

          I knew you would find courses to do… wait and see… you’ll get completely hooked!! It’s such a great platform and everyone teaching there seems very knowledgeable and talented.

          Best of all it’s really affordable!

          Enjoy lovely. xx

  • Reply Louisa Blackmore April 2, 2013 at 10:54 am


    Love this series, your blog is so flipping cool and you always have great must-read posts.

    Love it.

    Louisa x

    • Reply tina April 2, 2013 at 5:34 pm

      LOUISSSSSAAAAAA and Alfie:-)

      Thank you, you mad hatter:-) You know I welcome new guests so let me know if you fancy being on the list:-)
      Thanks love and please hug Alfir pug for me xx

  • Reply Parisbreakfast April 2, 2013 at 11:38 am

    I absolutely love this post! Big merci
    I signed on for Anne’s class but didn’t enter the online classroom.
    I think I must sign on again in May. It sounded brilliant
    Loaders of inspiration in your diagram
    I’m tattoo ing this to my forehead
    X Carolg

    • Reply tina April 2, 2013 at 5:36 pm

      Thank you Carol.
      Oh, don’t worry. She’s repeating it and I can tell you that the resources and people’s projects are hugely inspiring.

      Please sign up for May so I get to see you in class:-)

      Hahahahaha. That even beats Chi’s printing it out. Love it.. xx

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 4, 2013 at 8:20 pm

      Thanks, Carol. 🙂

  • Reply Gerard @WalnutGrey April 2, 2013 at 6:54 pm

    Going it alone is often a little pleasure of mine… watching the world go by. I am happy to be with myself and in the moment so to speak.

    The mapping idea is great… reminds me of my days as a facilitator. I haven’t done a personal map in quite some time now. I really should.

    It’s actually refreshing to see real handwriting, squiggles, lines & doodles. We don’t… or rather I don’t… do enough of that anymore.

    Thanks both 🙂 xx

    • Reply tina April 2, 2013 at 9:04 pm

      Thanks G. Personal maps are so fascinating aren’t they? My map project for the course I took and will re-take in May is: 30 years living in London. Mammoth task.

      I’m in love with hand-drawn maps. There is something so satisfying about them. I loved doing this and am going to do more for different projects.
      Glad you enjoyed xx

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 2, 2013 at 10:13 pm

      You’re welcome, Gerard and thank you – glad you liked it. Personal maps are great, aren’t they? I love the clarity they bring. I’m definitely hooked! 😀

  • Reply geraldine April 2, 2013 at 6:57 pm

    Brilliant posts from two very lovely, inspiring and confident ladies. Now I know where you are both getting it from! Although to be honest, I think those qualities are innate to both of you. I’m definitely one for a date with myself – space to think and unwind. I do the ‘go to restaurant ‘ by myself, haven’t tried the lone cinema date yet. Something to aim for. xx for Tina and xx for Chi

    • Reply tina April 2, 2013 at 9:07 pm

      Thanks Geraldine for such a compliment:-) The notion of confidence and whether it’s innate is an interesting debate. I believe confidence comes from ‘doing’ and seeing that one can achieve, however small. Do you remember before you started Instagram. Bet you didn’t think you would love it so much and be so good at it:-)

      I think I remember a post you wrote on going to a restaurant by yourself and how you enjoyed it. re-read it to give you a kick-start.. xx

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 2, 2013 at 10:19 pm

      You do say the loveliest things, Geraldine – thank you! 😀 x *blushes*

      The duality of Vive La Différence presents such a unique creative outlet. I had a great time doing this and Tina does have a knack for bringing out the best in people.

  • Reply Igor April 3, 2013 at 9:47 am

    A great new post to this fab series! I love Chi’s creativity and seeing you two work together is really inspiring. The doodles look really refreshing – finally something off Photoshop etc.:-) I think we should all remind ourselves to take ourselves more often out on a date. I mean hey, it’s a life long relationship, right? 🙂

    • Reply tina April 3, 2013 at 7:58 pm

      Thanks Igor. It’s always nice that you support this series.

      I’m really glad you mentioned the P word. I’m obviously a huge fan of Photoshop and use it daily but there’s something so satisfying about hand-drawn. I really want to do more of it. I remember the map you did for a guest post. I loved that!

      Haha. You are so right. It actually is the most important relationship and the foundation for any healthy ones we conduct with people…. you know the saying: you need to love yourself before you can truly love another:-)

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 4, 2013 at 8:09 pm

      Aww, thanks Igor!

      “I think we should all remind ourselves to take ourselves more often out on a date. I mean hey, it’s a life long relationship, right? :-)”
      Couldn’t have put it better myself. 😀

  • Reply Anya Jensen April 3, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    Hi Tina & Chi – another fab take on the VLD series. I always love these (and all your other posts) as it’s such a pleasure seeing how 2 different minds work. These hand-drawn maps rock – love them. Hope you guys are keeping warm – we have snow and sunshine, so I cope. Sunshine sunshine sunshine.
    Much love

    • Reply tina April 4, 2013 at 1:01 am

      Ha. Yes, still think back fondly of our Sex and the City vignettes. That was so much fun.

      Everytime I think that his series has run its course, I fall back in love with it and realise it’s still got mileage in it.

      It’s flipping freezing in London and I’m truly sick of it. We also have sun in the mornings but it’s bitterly cold!!!!! Sun please. Do you remember the weather we had at The Hive last year? 29degrees….

      Here’s to dreaming..l. thanks A x

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 4, 2013 at 8:11 pm

      Thanks Anya! You must join us on the 28th of May for more hand-drawn fun. 😀

  • Reply leah of sang the bird April 4, 2013 at 4:02 am

    Both these maps are so great! You and Chi are such strong, confident beautiful women, your words are so empowering.
    I love this concept “a date with myself”… This would be so lovely. I think I might go to Kiva for a massage, spa and sauna; and then take me and my book to the new Japanese restaurant for a late lunch.
    Much love xx

    • Reply tina April 4, 2013 at 7:52 am

      Awww, thank you hun. That’s so sweet!

      Oh, I think that’s exactly what I need. A turkish bath / hammam to warm up my bones. It’s so cold here, I am starting to dispair… you’ve inspired me, thank you!!

      Yes, a late lunch at the new Japanese restaurant sounds divine! Go on, treat yourself xx

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 4, 2013 at 8:15 pm

      Now I really am blushing – what a compliment! 😀 Thanks, Leah. x

  • Reply Louise - 30s Magazine April 4, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    Awesome! Maybe I should take that map drawing course after all….

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 4, 2013 at 8:16 pm

      Thanks, Louise.
      Yes, do! The more the merrier. 😀

    • Reply tina April 4, 2013 at 8:58 pm

      Haha! Told you. Why are you being resistant??? 🙂

  • Reply annie April 5, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    I love these maps. I’m going to check out that course. And Cheadle Dee I love that you went to St Dunstans! I miss that place but never get to go there anymore 🙁
    spending time on one’s own is the only way to have intelligent conversation sometimes 🙂

    • Reply tina April 5, 2013 at 9:44 pm

      Glad you enjoyed!

    • Reply Chi @ 106 April 6, 2013 at 7:07 pm

      Thanks Annie! 😀
      Of course, I have you to thank for introducing me to St. Dunstan’s in the first place. 🙂
      Do check out the map course – I’m sure you’ll love it!

  • Reply Nicola April 5, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    Hey Chi and Tina – lovely to see some great handwriting and I’m going to have a look at the course as I love maps.

    As an introverted extrovert (according to Quiet) I have to have some on-my- own time and can totally relate to this.

    Just out of interest Chi, did you manage to do the writing as soon as you woke up every morning? I tried but was constantly interrupted! And congratulations on your exciting news xx

    • Reply tina April 5, 2013 at 9:44 pm

      Thanks N,

      Go on, join us. It’s really a wonderful course. Good news is that I’ve already bought most books recommended so it’ll be cheaper for me second time round:-) It will be fun to egg each other on…. you will love the resources!

      I think I might be one too.. or maybe an extroverted introvert!

      BTW, I have also done the pages for a couple of years and yes, I did it as soon as I woke up in bed! Loved it and it really helped me through a tough time xx

  • Reply Chi @ 106 April 6, 2013 at 7:17 pm

    “Hey Chi and Tina – lovely to see some great handwriting and I’m going to have a look at the course as I love maps.”

    So glad you like it, Nicola – thank you!
    Hooray! Tina, I believe our work here is done. *dusts off hands* 😀

    “Just out of interest Chi, did you manage to do the writing as soon as you woke up every morning? I tried but was constantly interrupted! And congratulations on your exciting news xx”
    I did and still do. Yes, I do get interrupted by my three-year-old sometimes but I’m teaching her that dawn is Mummy’s time to write in (relative!) peace. It really sets the tone for my day because that way, I can proceed with a clear head.
    Thank you! It’ll be interesting to see if I can keep up the morning pages when the baby comes. 😀 x

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