Using Art to Deepen my Writing - Jo-Ann Carson

Using Art to Deepen my Writing


I’m starting a creative journal, sometimes called an art journal, to explore the hidden corners of the manuscript I’m working on, to break through the cobwebs and remove the dust, to find the essence of the story and polish it. Kind of like mining for gold with pastels.
Am I artistic?
Definitely not, and worse I’m a ‘logical-sequential’  thinker, the kind who likes to brainstorm in black and white, numbered, point form lists.
But I know that when I ‘mind map’ or use any sort of graphics to explore ideas, the process enhances my thinking. It adds another dimension – larger, deeper, more colorful. It fascinates me how the brain works. By adding art to my creative palette I hope to enrich my story.
We’ll see. I’ll keep you posted.
Source: My daughter HM blew me away when she showed me her journal, and that’s what got me thinking…
The picture is a shot of the river near my home (October – cell phone)

0 Replies to “Using Art to Deepen my Writing”

  1. Hi Jo-Ann, I am certain you will have a wonderful time with your creative journal.
    I hope you will be letting us know how it works out and what surprises pop up. (hint, hint.)

    1. Hi Andy
      I definitely will.
      I checked out your website on creative journaling ( To quote you:
      “Creative journaling is a close sibling of personal journaling; you may even consider them to be twins, but not identical twins. These twins look and walk quite differently, they engage you quite differently, they reason quite differently.”
      It will be an interesting journey.
      Thank you for stopping by and commenting.

      1. Hi Jo-Ann. Thank you for having the interest and taking the time to check out my blog. As you will now know, I am really, really interested in learning what you personally discover on your journey. Looking forward to reading your post.
        All the very best.

  2. Love the picture, Jo-Ann. I have a similar one taken on my phone looking through the leaves that way at a stream. In New Hampshire. I have a love-affair with the pics we take on vacation. Many hang in our home. I find places inspiring, so I have no doubt this will work for you. (I’m a linear thinker, too. Good Presbyterian–things should be done “decently and in order.” LOL It’s a great line.
    Keep us posted and do share your pics.

    1. Hi Marsha
      I love your ‘good Presbyterian’ line. You gotta use that in a story. It so defines many of us. lol.
      I’m attached to many of my travel photos too. They can be a simple shot of a street, but they bring back so many memories, like a key to a treasure chest. Someday I may get organized enough to put some on the wall. I don’t know why I ever thought I’d have time when I retired.
      But I am loving writing.
      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

  3. I used to go painting with my mother and now, occasionally, I go pastel-ing with my octogenarian friend. I don’t have much artistic talent but I really enjoy getting those unused wheels turning in the corners of my brain. I do personal journaling but you are right. It does engage one quite differently..i would love to see some of your results.

    1. Hi Daniela
      Pastels heh!
      I haven’t done a lot of art, but I did “guck” around with different materials when I taught. I don’t expect my journal to be pretty, but I think I’ll learn from it. As long as I don’t have high artistic expectations of it I think I’ll be okay. I’ll keep you posted.
      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

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