How do you find inspiration? What triggers your mind to seek inspiration or apply it to an aspect of your life?
It is truly an amazing feeling to me as an artist to randomly find inspiration. That little spark can be the key ingredient to someone’s masterpiece. One of the most common forms of inspiration comes from one person studying another’s work. For example, if you head to my Flickr photostream and search for my photo entitled “Surrounded”, you’ll see that it was done differently than most of my other work. Here’s the story behind my photo:
I was browsing a photography blog when I came across an article about a guy around my age that was currently working on a 365 project using surrealism. I had seen beautiful images of surrealism in the past, but none that were modern. He seemed very passionate about his work, and obviously put forth a lot of effort into his self portraits. After clicking through the majority of his pictures, I found another photographer that solely did fine art self portrait photography. These two people inspired me to try to create my own work of art by viewing photography as an art form instead of just the process of taking pictures.
Once I got an idea in my head, I went outside on a cloudy day to set up the shot. Of course, my original idea was slightly different from the final edit of the photo. That little broken mirror effect was actually discovered by accident, as were the colorful clouds while I was playing with different effects and lighting. Before I found those editing options, however, I was a little disappointed in my picture. It was too much too plain and simple, and it was nothing like those other photographers whose work could win awards. That got me thinking, does inspiration have a better effect when we stop trying to copy the very thing that inspired us? Yes. Originality is something that is missing in this culture. In church, many think they can be saved simply by acting like everyone else. Only when that very person truly sees God’s work and believes that He exists will they be saved. There is a difference is acting like others around you to fit in and being like Jesus called us to be. The same principle applies to kids in school. Some choose to act like the popular kids, even if that means doing things they shouldn’t, just to be accepted by their peers.
Inspiration’s purpose is to give someone an example of how to do something, not step by step instructions on how to copy something without giving it any meaning.
Once we start acting like ourselves, we will be much better off. For those of you reading this, have you ever had any issues with being original?