I can't believe I haven't shared this with you yet! Brooklyn designer, illustrator and 'alphastructaesthetitologist' Jon Contino did this short, somewhat off-the-cuff interview about motivation, dedication and inspiration a while ago and it is pretty awesome.
(If you thought about skipping over it... don't! Start watching for the Brooklyn accent and you'll be hooked for the rest.)
Around the middle of it Jon muses, "Now that I'm able to actually produce the stuff that I like, I find more inspiration in the people around me who do other things... watching my wife bake a cake or sing... is so much cooler and more inspiring than seeing someone draw something slightly different than what I draw."
Jon's whole work ethic is invigorating but I had to share this part because I can identify with it so much; lately everything except art has been creatively stimulating for me, which I'm guessing is a transformation that happens to a lot of artists of all kinds once they start to mature and find their groove. We realize that our style is (thankfully! finally!) on its own track, and seeking and absorbing the work of other artists like us (or whom we wish to be like) isn't going to create momentum for our work the way we might have thought it would when we were first starting out. Not that appreciating other artists' work is a bad thing at all - I could pour over the portfolios of other painters and collage artists in a contented and loving daze all day - just that it's not where we should find all, if any, of our creative fuel. At least for me personally, the things I create change so much for the better when I incorporate the rest of the world into them rather than just the rest of my particular world of makers. Painters need to learn from writers, writers from dancers, dancers from surfers... the best ideas are created from our reinterpretation of what is new and novel, if only to our eyes.
What do you think... do you work better when surrounded by similar influences or when perked up by novel sights and things?
(P.S.. I fixed the comment section! It should be much easier to sign in with any social media account or comment with just your name, if you like :)