What is inspiration? The word comes from the Latin word inspirare, which literally means “to breathe into”, and it generally refers to a burst of unconscious creativity.
“Where do you get your inspiration?” is probably the most often asked question an artist hears. “Inspiration is for amateurs – I love to paint and the process inspires me every day.” ~ Chuck Close
Where is inspiration found? Start by slowing down, paying attention, and seeing and listening to what is around you.
Join a critique group. Get out of the house and find a group of like minded individuals. There will always be someone there to inspire you. Connect with other creative people.
Never stop learning. Take classes, read books, go to lectures. Alway be curious!
Make a weekly art date. In The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, she describes them as “assigned play…they fire up the imagination. They spark whimsy. They encourage play.” Listen to Julia describe The Artist Date here.
Observe. Look at art, get out, go to museums, go to galleries. Again, slow down, look, ask yourself why you really like certain pieces of art.
Take a walk. If you are lucky enough to live somewhere that has public art, go look at it. There is a permanent installation by Sol Lewitt in Atlanta, pictured below. If not, look at the architecture, look at nature.
Most of all remember why you started making art in the first place! Roger Ebert said “The muse visits during the art of creation, not before. Don’t wait for her. Start alone!”
Where do you find your inspiration? I’d love to know!