A little background

2017-08-21 Me

I have been creating so much of my life that it is as basic to my survival as breath. It may sound precocious, but I began working creatively with art and writing at age three. As soon as my mother taught me to read, I begged to write. I am not sure I realized it then but know I soon knew that creative expression gave the power to communicate. I hope my skills have improved significantly over the 51 additional years I have spent working the crafts.

My first publishing credits were in elementary school newspapers on pink mimeographed pages with purple ink which I loved to smell. Part of an early effort that for some reason has stuck in my brain (which rarely contains anything I write after it is written) these many years, is:

Lonely Shadows

Lonely shadows
In the dark.

Lonely shadows
Do they stay?

Lonely shadows
Do they play,

In the mid
Midnight dark?

The whole thing was longer, but I guess it a blessing I forgot the most of it.

I wrote books by hand and illustrated them with pictures I created, drawing on paper, cutting out the image and pasting it on the page with my words. My first efforts were made with crayons and colored pencils. I was often scolded for wasting paper because if I made mistakes, I would start over on new pages. I have always had a sense of perfectionism. It is a hard thing to overcome.

I graduated to graphite and then ink pen. I still do a lot of writing by hand. When you practice penmanship as much as I have you feel obligated to use it at times. I am a pen collector extraordinaire. I have friends who are enamored of fountain pens, but somehow they always make a mess for me, so I use ballpoints, roller balls, and gel pens. I like the feel of ink moving across pages due to my hand. I sometimes use my scanner to import handwritten pages to the computer. When I can, I leave screens for a bit and get back to that primary sense of control.

I inherited the old typewriters that had come from my father’s years at seminary and my brother’s years in school. These clunky machines gave me output in print, but they were no joy to work with, and correction tape was at best an iffy thing. The innards would become tangled and cause frustration, and the keys required much finger strength to manipulate.

After begging for a computer for years, I bought my first one in 1991 while managing a convenience store. Since then, at times when I owned computers, writing has been a dream of ease. Much writing and almost every final draft are done with a keyboard on a screen.

Art was compelling to me in younger years, but periodically I drift away from it. To me, it seems to require much time-consuming commitment and effort to perfect. Writing is less demanding on me. I am attempting to rediscover my artistic skill, but it is likely to take a while.

I think I was six when I got my first camera. It was an Instamatic knock off, quite likely bought at Grants. In 1991, see a pattern here, aye, I got my first semi-professional camera. I tried a Cannon, and that did not work right. I had bought it at K-Mart. I took it back, and made a trip to Wolf Camera and bought a Nikon SLR. Let me tell you life was never quite the same from 1991 forward. I have taken beaucoups photographs since.

I have joined those elements in many ways over the years. In the nineties I desktop published a gray-scale magazine of art, photography, poetry, writing that was digest sized and went out to contributors the world over. I joined in on the blog craze at the beginning on MSN Spaces and have migrated that around. It can be found at Chronicles. I suppose it could be said that my creative focus, the heart of it all, is writing and publishing. I have designed works combining writing, art, and photography so often, I cannot quit. For the last year, my poetry and writing have been appearing in local magazines at times, and I have worked as a copy editor for those publications.

This is a new website but does not signify I am in any way new to the work. I wanted to start something new with the reasoning that it would be meant to encourage creativity. There have been many times had I not used the creative drive I might have given up, and we can as people can never give up. Creativity gives hope and ways to express the pain that lift us beyond it and bring us out of the darkness of despair into the light of love. Every day of our lives holds the opportunity to express our creative impulse and improve the world.

I hope you will be a part of the ongoing adventure. You may follow the website by clicking the button or just return often if it suits you better. I would not have posted my story, but I guessed some of you might want to know why I feel I can encourage and inspire you creatively. I do a great deal of reading on the subjects of creativity, genius, inspiration, writing, poetry, art, and photography and put much of the knowledge I gain to work. So rather than having to do all that yourself, you might pick up a few timely tips here and there.

Write something about your own creative journey and share it somehow. If you like leave it in a comment or on the contact page. You never know, what you share might help someone realize they can make their dreams reality.

Thank you for visiting Haphazard Creative, please come back when you are able. Keep a smile on your face, and you will find the world is a much happier place. Take care.

© Jo Ann J. A. Jordan

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