Immerse yourself in Inspiration
I'm going to say something that seems to be an unpopular opinion:
Allow yourself to be inspired by other artists.
I've read so many pieces of advice for artists to shut themselves off to their community for fear of plagiarizing them.
This is self limiting!
Creativity breeds creativity. The more you are inspired by what surrounds you, the more you can find inspiration in yourself.
On the other hand, shutting yourself out to the world limits the things you experience and therefore, limits your opportunities to find creativity.
To be clear, I'm not suggesting copying. Inspiration is different from duplication. Be inspired by the subject matter, the colours, the composition. Then sit with that idea and let it inspire you. Let it transform in your creativity before making it your own.
I'll give an example from my own life. In the summer of 2022, I met a hawk moth in my backyard. I was awestruck by it and would visit it in my garden in the evenings.
Fast forward 2 weeks, and I came across these beautiful earrings by Maiden Perras on Instagram. I bought them straight away as they reminded me of the moth I met under the moonlight.
I knew I wanted to make something for myself as an ode to moth, inspired by both the actual hawk moth and my new earrings, I got to work on a bullet journal spread so I could keep that memory in the space and time of it. I love creative bullet journalling because I can review my journals later on and have them bring me back to the feelings of that moment.
Though I really loved my illustration, I knew I wanted to digitize it to share it with my community as a print and put my perspective of this moth into the world. Digital design helped me to realize the vision I had of this moth illustration from the start, but wasn't able to depict on paper.
My moth print is now available on my website, or by private message.
The journey behind this print is being inspired both by my surroundings and by a fellow artist. It's not copying, it's not plagarism, it's inspiration. My print is my creative perspective from all the inspiration that led me to this idea.
Supporting your fellow artist does not exclude you.
There is room for you in the creative space, and building other artists up, in turn, will build you up. You can't build other artists by shutting yourselves off to them.
Be inspired by everything you do and see, your interpretation of the world deserves to be enjoyed and may, in turn, inspire others around you.
Go find what inspires you,