Firstly, my main source of inspiration does genuinely spring from my imagination. I've been drawing since I was about six-years-old and I always have a seed of an idea singing to me from some part of my brain. The need to breathe life into that little idea is a terrible itch, but a gratifying one.
Most of my pictures are inspired by women. Obviously. I love female anatomy, so my ideas will always start with an idea for a pose. The hair is my favourite part and that often completes the image in my mind - I love creating the flow and shapes. Colour comes next, often inspired by the environment and season I picture the subject in. The image grows from there.
But of course I am inspired by what I see around me. It's fair to say that pretty much everything can be used as inspiration, from day to day media like movies and cartoons, to the texture of a tree trunk or the feather of a bird. But my main inspiration is drawn from other artists, fashion photography, the ocean, weather, seasons and fairy tales.
As with most little girls, Disney had a massive effect on my creativity (and my outlook of life in general), hence why I lean toward Disney fanart so often, but not many realise that videogames were what started my hobby. When I was around 6/7 I was bought a Playstation for Christmas, and became enthralled with the designs of the characters. I loved the concept sketches of Final Fantasy 7 and 8, Dead or Alive and, most influentially, Lara Croft. If it wasn't for them, I probably wouldn't be drawing today. From about 10-years-old and onwards, I was also influenced by anime/manga, which still works to inspire me, even though I'm not the otaku fanatic I was ten years ago!
Though some people might consider taking inspiration from other people's work 'cheating', I would completely disagree. The artist in question would have failed miserably if someone didn't feel moved or motivated by their creation. In fact, I'm sure it's every artist's dream to make other's feel something and remember their work.
With that in mind, here is a list of artists that inspire me most! I'm sure you would have heard of some of them but regardless of popularity, these are the people who make me feel excited about picking up a pen and putting it to paper.
Her skill on Photoshop is undisputed, though what really draws me to her work is her use of earth-tone themes slashed through with one or two vibrant, luminous colours. Her subject matters are also really cool too, and I love how she's not afraid to make her girls curvy! And like myself, she draws her inspiration from the sea.
Although I don't exhibit my watercolour work on dA, it is my second favourite medium to use besides Photoshop. I adore Tir-ri's unique style. Her colours are always varied yet beautifully coordinated, and she uses specks of white in all the right places. What is most striking about her work though, is the story she always manages to tell through the themes and characters featured in her work.
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A well known online photographer. What can I say? Her work is stunning. Whimsical but dark, like every good fairytale that's ever been written. It's also nice to see such a successful female photographer.
Again with the watercolours. Her pictures are always so warming, not only because of the autumn palettes she often uses but because the subject matter is so delicately drawn. It's reminiscent of renaissance art, I feel, though much softer.
5. Vanessa Lake
I have a real thing about beautiful, tattooed women! Although I think it's a shame she's had so much plastic surgery recently (eep, sorry Vanessa!), she's still a stunning redhead with an epic pout, so what more could you ask for? Oh yeah, that's right; she takes wonderful, self styled pictures that are cheeky, provocative and bundles of fun.
6. Cate Parr www.cateparr.com
Moar watercolours?? Oh yes! Fashion illustration at its finest. How she manages to capture the female form with no pencil guidelines, I'll never know. Her colour choices and blending are awe inspiring.
'Okay, you like watercolours, we get it' - You. But seriously, Koyamori's work is a strange mish-mash of simplicity and detail. The closer you look the more you see! The layering is extraordinary. The subject matter is often dark, yet softened with a playful and childish style. These are the kind of pictures I want in my children's nursery.
8. The Master - Alphonse Mucha
Savin' the best 'til last. The man that influenced a thousand artists and more. What could I possibly say to summarise his timeless art?
These are only a few of the people that inspire me. Please share with me your favourite artists and why they inspire you! Everyone has someone they turn to when their brain goes 'blurgh'.