As artists we must be like radios: always with our antennas up, ready to be inspired. When it comes to the work of other artists though, it can be a slippery slope to climb. It’s all too easy to love another artist’s work so much that it seeps silently into our own. Especially since, as artists, we’re curious and always want to develop our skills and abilities.
Now, with the Internet at our fingertips, it’s easy to discover, follow and even be taught by artists whose work we love. But, of course, that’s a two-sided coin. With the abundance of inspiration often follows copied work. It’s when we don’t move beyond that that we’re not being true to ourselves, or fair to those who inspire us.
So, how do you go from inspired to original?
One way is to spend some time with the work that’s catching your attention and discover what exactly is that you love so much. Is it the colour palette? The way they use marks? The compositions they tend to choose? The concept behind the work? The subject?
When you have better clarity about what it is you love, you can use what you’re looking at as a starting point.
I wanted to write down a list of some of my inspirations through the years. It was hard to make it because sometimes I’m not aware where the inspiration came from, but I realised it after a few months/years.
Art Nouveau is an international style of art, architecture and applied art, especially the decorative arts, that was most popular between 1890 and 1910.
I recently went to an exhibition in Edinburgh about the fashion during the 20thcentury. What I loved about this is exhibition were patterns and colours. I loved most the abstract patterns because I could lose myself into them and imagine what every shape could represent.
Christoph is an artist based in Leipzig. He approaches painting as a compositional jigsaw puzzle, each element of his works has an individually delineated shape filling a gap in the whole picture.
What I love about Ruckhaberle are a lot of things but in specific the freedom with which he breaks every rule of space and anatomy. His painting has always a certain movement like a dance.
Martin Sharp was an Australian artist, cartoonist, songwriter and film-maker.
In his own solo and collaborative work, Sharp was committed to social and cultural change. He wanted to make the world a happier place.
From an intense scribbler he became a wonderful drawer, collagist and colourist who experimented with a range of media. His creative skill can be seen in the weaving of words and images to form active, almost animated spaces.
I love Sharp’s movement in all his works. How he created his composition and easily make the eye focus where he wants.
French artist Gilbert Legrand adds some whimsy into everyday objects by transforming them into delightful characters.
I truly believe Gilbert Legrand is a genius artist. Every time I see his works they make me smile and that is what I like most: they are fun.
I love their playful nature and they make me think about the everyday objects in a different way.
Do you have any artists or person who you are most inspired by?I would love to know in the comments box below and be inspired too!