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Thoughts on Being An Emerging Creative Aging Artist

The Rickie Report shares some thoughts about creativity written by guest writer, Jan Stein.  She is the founder of a public educational charity, Creative Legacy Archives, Inc. and DiDiT Media.  Ms. Stein also offers services through E*maginate, L.L.C.   Read more about her goals and reflections.

When The Rickie Report met Jan Stein, she told us that she is “creating a cultural and new media content legacy  reflective of our universal, visually rich humanity using the Internet.”  


Jan brings much experience to her continuing journey with art and creativity.  A former educator and gallery owner, she was a public employee for Art in Public Spaces in Hillsborough, FL.  She still serves on the University of South Florida Contemporary Art Museum Council Board, Hillsborough County Aviation Authority Public Art Committee, Florida Center for Creative Aging, Florida Policy Exchange Center on Aging and Tampa Board of  the University of South Florida. She most recently worked with artist, Lois Brezinski, at her gallery in West Palm Beach.

The Rickie Report notes that recent studies show people are not ready to retire and give themselves up to total recreation.  Indeed, more people are connecting to what their passions are, which may not necessarily have been what they worked at previously for pay.  There are many examples of men and women who continue to inspire us to open ourselves to new experiences which include getting in touch with our creative selves. 

Jan Stein explains, “E*maginate, LLC  is a media project which includes coordinating, planning and management with local and regional, private and corporate, municipal art committees and community art projects events.  It is involved in commissions, installations and all aspects of marketing involving the print and visual media”.


She tells The Rickie Report, “Integral to my emergence as ‘an artist’ is a commitment to creative aging and life-long learning. After many years of advocating for creative persons, processes and tangible achievement(s) by ALL and at ANY age(s), my personal art world is defined by this approach. Likewise, e*maginate, L.L.C.’s motivation is about creative and personal productivity.  The company promotes the idea of creative accomplishment by diverse humanity. DiDIT Media’s digital videos and still images will showcase creative persons who speak extemporaneously about their unique process and tangible creative legacy”.

 “The DiDiT® concept was influenced two Academy Award® and Emmy Award®  writers and media producers, my family members, the late Stanley Shapiro and Neal Shapiro.  As a teacher and parent who values education, the visual arts and quality media content, e*maginate is my way to aspire to that higher level of my family members’ achievements”.
Stein goes on to explain, “The Creative Legacy Archives’ (CLA) mission is to bring the video portrait, oral history through T.V. and the internet. DiDiT® Media’s goal is to inspire future generations of creative, expressive and productive Humanity”.


“When I was young I loved coloring, ballet and tap, reading, listening to music and singing. In fifth grade, I played Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz –wearing the the red slippers.  Somewhere “over the rainbow”, I lost my arts focus, preferring “Where the Boys Are/were”. Fast forward to age 30 and my moving to Florida with a husband and a baby.  I had a chance encounter with an NEA awardwinning painter, a LIFE Magazine Photographer-of-the-Year,  a husband/wife Architect-professional team, and a published author. Those creative professionals revved up my arts passion”!


“In fact, those artsy professionals influenced me to make a life-long commitment to embrace all arts, accomplishment and “Creative Humanity”. Absorbing enthusiasm, but not heeding advice, I was compelled to own and curate my own fine arts gallery. Later, I became the manager of a Florida Public Art Program. For 15 years I  completed public art projects, for which I procured hundreds of works of art by diverse artists in all media and arranged for these to be installed at various county-owned interior and exterior public places. With my concentration on the art-making of others, I never contemplated nor did I engage in personal art making-  especially at my increasingly older age”.

“I remember when a younger woman called me for help, as she described USF’s Creative Aging program. Without missing a beat, I volunteered and was initiated into the USF, Tampa Campus’ Creative Aging culture.  I talked with key advocats, educators and researchers, like  Gene Cohen, M.D. of The National Institutes on Aging; USF Professor Dr. Larry Polika, and most importantly, Creative Aging’s Chief Advocate, Dr. Gay Hanna.  Gay is now the Executive Director of the Center for Creative Aging, in Washington, D.C.  Dr. Hanna is a most positive Creative Aging leader. Her  knowledge, experience and special personality, along with her astute intellect and compassion are highly respected. The Center for Creative Aging and Dr. Hanna receive support from the National Endowment for the Arts”.  For more information see:


“A few years passed and upon turning ‘fifty something’, I traveled to Havana, Cuba. Prior to this first Catholic Charities mission, I purchased an inexpensive digital camera. Cuba’s time capsule 1957-milieu, iconic cultural style and historic places became perfect subjects for me. I observed immense human resilience and demonstration of local creativity, despite Cuba’s super-stunted social structure. Cuba’s arte and musica abounded!  Creativity in Cuba became surreal for me when reposing at Hemingway’s desk, I imagined the author’s life long body of creative work”.


“After my return from Cuba, I reviewed my pictures and I felt artistically capable. In homage to my artists’ acquaintances and their influences, it was my time for art making. Yes, I am “the old dog, who learned new creative tricks.” Shooting “Lucky” digital compositions was gratifying, and soon I realized it was my AGE which empowered me to create my first full body of resolved images”.


“With new found confidence about being expressive, it was much fun when I exhibited ‘Silhouettes’ (pictures from my Cuba trip) at a highly respected library’s art gallery.  How sweet, when more than 150 people attended my reception! Surprisingly, more than one person asked,’ Jan, what took you so long’?  At that moment, I owned my response, “I am an emerging Creative Aging Visual Artist“.  Yes, my visual art ID was reminiscent of that phone call from USF so many years ago”!


“Now at 62, my life is defined by associating with creative aging and accomplished people, representing all generations and creative disciplines. My artist’s statement on my website begins with Creative Aging as a primary theme. Integral to my creativity is my being a lover of life and love, as well as being a lover of art and culture. I love that Creative Aging is consistent with my personal life-long learning lifestyle.  When other Creative Aging friends call me “muse,” this motivates me to write a colorful children’s book or to start a new media production company, called DiDiT® Media”.


“I also founded a new media educational charitable organization, The Creative Legacy Archives.  I am passionate about Creatively Aging, and being artistically expressive. It is in thought and deed that I fully embrace the pro-active mission of the National Center for Creative AgingIn advocating for other peoples’ creativity and tangible achievements, Creative Aging is now a powerful status”.

Note: e *maginate, L.L.C is Jan Stein’s (Creative Aging consulting and media production) start-up business.  Jan also works as the Artistic and Marketing Consultant, and is a board member of Peter Alan Portraits & Art (PAPA). The co-owners, Peter A. Hoffman and Christina Coenan are 67, and 63-years old respectively. Feel free to contact Jan at or call  813 928 5223 to learn more about the Center for Creative Aging and Peter Alan Portraits & Art’s oil paint embellished giclees.  


Jan’s Note Quote, with the help of George Bernard Shaw: Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire; you will what you imagine; and at last, you create what you will… “At any ole age”, adds Creative Aging Advocate Jan Stein.  Visit  for more links and information about her misssion, philosophy, and activities.

For coverage of your events, to place an advertisement, or speak to Rickie about appearing in The Rickie Report, contact The Rickie Report at:

Rickie Leiter, Publisher

The Rickie Report

P.O.Box 33423

Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33420


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