This influence Map has been bobbing around the Internet for a while now, and I’ve seen some of my favourite online artists fill it out, and its so fun to see what influenced them. I filled it out myself a while ago, and have it hanging on my wall so when my muse is all gone, I can just glance at my influence map. It’s also interesting, just in the exercise of having to carefully consider what and who has actually inspired you. As I don’t only do art, but also a lot of writing, this influence map reflects both those interests.
1. This is an image from Angela Kohler, a photographer who I adore, and who’s style I try to emulate. I love how casual, yet beautiful her photography is, and how much impact she can put into a picture, even when said picture is of such normal, even mundane events. And than there are the stop-motion films that she has done for Amazon and A Fine Frenzy’s music video, Lost Things. I just love the whole concept of stop-motion films, but Angela Kohler takes them to a level where they are an amazing artform.
2. This is an image from one of Kate Beaton’s comics, on her online comic website, “Hark a Vagrant”. I love Kate Beaton’s work for many reasons. First of all, her comics are hilarious. And its not cheap funny, its intelligent funny. Many of her comics poke fun at historical, politic, scientific, or literary figures, events or concepts, and I’ve realised that you do have to have a background knowledge of these things to find the humour in her comics,. My sister who has no interest in history at all rarely gets the punchline. But being an archaeology student, and having studied English Literature and History for my British A-Levels, I have all the background knowledge I need to be delighted and laugh out loud every time she releases a new comic strip. I wish I could be that funny. Also, I love her very sketchy style, which very much resembles some of the random in-class stuff I do. Basically, I wish I could make comic strips like Kate Beaton.
3. This is an image from another online comic, “The Dreamer” by Lora Innes. I love it for the history, the plot, and obviously, the amazing art. I don’t know how many times I’ve tried to recreate Lora’s style and art, but I often fail. Point is, that Lora’s art is truly one of my muses, and an amazing artist and writer.
4. Jane Austen! Honestly, she made me fall in love with her world and Mr. Darcy and Mr. Knightley and Colonel Brandon, and seriously… I am a goner… I am totally naming my first son Fitzwilliam.
5. I bet your wondering why on earth twilight of all things is on here. How can that inspire/influence anyone? But whatever its shortcomings, there is just so much EMOTION in Twilight, and all that angsty teenage emotion is such a good art muse.
6. Harry Potter. What else can I say, he instantly injects magic into my world! Plus there are just so many good themes going on their to analyse. And so many fantastic varied, deep characters. Its heaven. In seven books no less! Its always so good when its a long series, but not too epically long either.
7. C.S.Lewis’ quotes always make me think and they are fantastic when I want to write or draw something a little different. In fact its a while since I did a piece based on one of his quotes, I think its time to break one out…
8. John William Waterhouse is among my favourite painters. I just love the style, the figures, compositions, colours etc. But apart from the technical aspects of his paintings, I love the legends and myths behind. I find myths and legends fascinating, and they inspire a lot of my own art. I also use J.W. Waterhouse to get inspiration for some of the historical costumes that I draw or paint. I love costumes, and I often go to his paintings for medieval or greek ideas.
10. Monet is another of my favourite painters. I’ve loved his work since i was little, and one of my favourite holidays is when my parents took us to Monets garden on one of our big roadtrips. I love how everything just seems to merge together and look real when you look at it from afar. I think he is probably my biggest inspiration to abandon the rules that my art teachers taught me, and to experiment on my own, and that even though it might not look perfect in the details, its the picture as a whole that makes the impact.
11. History is a major fountain of muse for me, particularly historical costumes which I loved to research and then draw, its such amazing good fun. As you’ve probably noticed in some of my drawings. :)
12. William Morris was among the people who founded the Arts and Crafts movement, focused on the charm and importance of something that one has made with ones hands, carefully crafted, rather then mass-produced products which were at that time the new vogue due to the Industrial Revolution. He makes beautiful things, truly a man of many talents, in particular I love his fabric patterns, of which this is an example, and his stained glass windows which are gorgeous.
13. The sea is probably of of my major creative influences. Throughout my childhood and teenage years we lived in Denmark, which is a bunch of more than 300 tiny islands. What this means is that even if you live smack in the middle of any given island, you still live pretty close to the sea. That and the fact that my parents have always been the nature sort, so we frequently went to the beach, and I always loved the sea. It now features in a lot of my art.