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Madalena Lobao-Tello

3 Years Ago

How Do We Become Inspired?

What do you do to inspire yourself? Do you meditate? Do you write in a journal?

”The artist is a receptacle for emotions that come from all over the place: from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape, from a spider's web.” -- Picasso.

“Go and make interesting mistakes, make amazing mistakes, make glorious and fantastic mistakes. Break rules. Leave the world more interesting for your being here. Make. Good. Art.” ~Neil Gaiman

”When it is working, you completely go into another place, you’re tapping into things that are totally universal, completely beyond your ego and your own self. That’s what it’s all about.” ~Keith Haring

“To draw, you must close your eyes and sing” ~Pablo Picasso

“Creativity is essentially a lonely art. An even lonelier struggle. To some a blessing. To others a curse. It is in reality the ability to reach inside yourself and drag forth from your very soul an idea.” ~Lou Dorfsman

“This world is but a canvas to our imagination.” ~Thoreau

“You need not leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. You need not even listen, simply wait, just learn to become quiet, and still, and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked. It has no choice; it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.” ~Kafka

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As a nature photographer, I become inspired by the beauty of nature - by what our Creator has so generously given us for all to enjoy. Just looking at a pretty flower, or a beautiful landscape is reason enough to fill my heart with appreciation and joy.


Janet Kearns

2 Years Ago

I get the best inspiration from visiting an art gallery, or failing that, trolling the pages of art sites and seeing what others are up to. People/artists never cease to amaze me and then I feel like amazing myself!


Kristine Kellor

3 Years Ago

The possibility of capturing and depicting the inexpressible drives my excitement in watercolor painting

I began my explorations of watercolor painting in 2000 as a way of “entering” rather than fighting severe chronic pain. In a meditative state, I painted the pain I was experiencing. Employing color, texture and motion, I captured and transformed the pain. This process led me to enjoy and embrace painting as a visceral, failure proof, activity.
I believe the process of intentional painting ensures success. If one is content to accept even a tiny segment of one’s painting as an authentic expression of one’s interior or spiritual experience, painting becomes a joyful experience. When I sit to paint, I most often am moved to do so by an inner desire to explore and capture a strong emotion or intuition I’ve found myself incapable of describing in words.
I begin my paintings with the intention to play with a particular color, medium, or technique, altering my approach, as I enter more deeply into the painting process. Experiencing colors interiorly, I symbolically associate particular colors with specific feeling states. Transparent watercolor provide an excellent medium for expressing the flowing, changing, interrelationships of motion, color and emotion.
For the past three years, I’ve been volunteering at a local inpatient Hospice. Happily, I was allowed to design and institute a creative art activity program for the patients and their loved ones. Assisting the actively dying in playful, often joyous, engagement with simple “artful” projects continues to be a rich experience. It has taught me to see again, with fresh eyes, the powerful effects of color, line, motion, texture, etc. on the human spirit!


Debra Forand

3 Years Ago

Nature inspires me, gods beauty. I just close my eyes, clear my head and when I am at peace I just see what others do not. Being a romantic dreamer helps as well.


Catherine Basten

3 Years Ago

Van Gogh stated it well; I dream what tp paint & paint what I dream.
I too dream of an idea; then the painting isn't complete until I conquer what I envision. Many Blessings Catherine


Madalena Lobao-Tello

3 Years Ago

I have known great FAA women artists through this discussion.!!
Thank you so much to share!!


Julie Cameron

3 Years Ago

Nature always inspires me. A trip to a park or the beach is always inspirational.


Christine Drake

3 Years Ago

I am inspired by a beautiful moment, something I see in the sky or through the trees, color, clouds, animals, etc. A wow moment will get me going because I want to share it!


Photography Prints

"I am inspired by the love that I feel for my children, the beauty of flowers and nature, love for music, people, animals, feelings/emotions, passion for art, faith, hope, love... I've been passionate about visual art since I was 3 years old...and music (piano) since I was 4. I don't
know what it's like not to, and I am greatful to have found this site and thus be able to share with everyone my work."

-Thank you so much Madalena for featuring my work in this wonderful group, I truly appreciate it!

:) Marilyn


Karen Lewis

3 Years Ago

So many things inspire me and I love to experiment and try new techniques/ideas. I often find that I am inspired by the work of others - not to copy but often others works will springboard an idea in my head - sometimes they work and sometimes they don't - but I still have fun trying! Thanks to all the above for sharing - it is interesting to see how others find inspiration - some new things to consider!


Shirley Sirois

3 Years Ago

Living in Canada I have the pleasure of enjoying the four seasons which continue to inspire all aspects of my life. What I wear, what I cook, how I decorate the home and what I post on FAA are the result of that inspiration. It's been my way of life since a child and I pray that it will continue as each new day arrives! If I took a picture of each new inspiration my house would runneth over!


Jane Chesnut

3 Years Ago

My emotions really play a big part into how i paint, Music and lyrics spur many ideas and inspire how i paint, some days are moody and dark, some are colorful happy. I try to release my feelings and emotions into painting. Life is a jounery filled with emotions in every breath. I cherish everyday.


T Alyne

3 Years Ago

TRAVEL, exploring new cultures and engaging therein.
TIME ALONE, hiking, biking, drawing, painting.
ENVIRONMENT, weather, colors, nature.
RESEARCH, reading philosophy/poetry/science/medical/etc..., looking at art, museums, architecture, history,....
MAKING CHANGE. Currently, planning a trip to South America or Central America. Afterwards, moving to Colorado.


RC DeWinter

3 Years Ago

History, mythology, personal emotion, admiration for the work of great artists all combine to inspire me. I am also fascinated by architectural style and the different ways of portraying light as well. Sometimes I will create a new work to go with a poem I've written; sometimes I write a poem after I've painted an image and post them together.


Barbra Drasby

3 Years Ago

I am inspired by so many different things and find the best drive to create is when deep emotions from within naturally spills out and escapes. When I'm lost for inspiration it is motivational surrounding myself by nature and just taking time to absorb and philosophically think about the world surrounding me.


Hello Everyone-

What Inspires me??

I am a Wildlife Photographer and Nature Photographer by choice.
This past summer I began shooting still life for the first time...trying to pay the bills.

Surprisingly I have been enjoying it more than I thought.
I have illness and getting out in nature to capture images of wildlife is often very challenging.

Wildlife and nature itself inspires me so that one is easy. Apart from nature...color inspires me.
With my still life work I often get my greatest inspiration when I go to bed... and when I awaken.

I am fortunate to not find myself low on inspiration.... just the energy, time and health it takes to follow through with
the inspiration as it comes.

I do this full time.... so I photograph each and every day.
The more I photograph the more inspired I become... with new ideas.



As a nature photographer, I am totally inspired the moment I am in the presence of beautiful landscapes and flowers. Nature is my passion, and as someone before me said, it is in my soul and spirit! My heart races when I am capturing things of beauty. I always thank our Creator for having given us such a wonderful gift as nature!


Quin Sweetman

3 Years Ago

I am a part of many art groups with opportunities to paint from life ...models, still lifes and outdoors. It's hard not to be inspired with so many amazing and talented women around me. My problem is finding the inspiration to"finish" things in my own studio.


Chrisann Ellis

3 Years Ago

I am Inspired but what is around me... It can be a new song I hear.. A new Voice... or A New Blend of Colors .... I also get so Inspired by spending time on FAA.. and viewing Outstanding artist Galleries.. Gets my blood going to paint, which is my passion!... they surely get my creative side going... :)


Amy LaBonte

3 Years Ago

Walking away inspires me. Walking away from the work to take a shower, make some food, watch the sky, feel the sun. Alone, and away from striving... that's when the answers come.


Mary Sullivan

3 Years Ago

I love the quotes with which you introduced this fruitful sharing and for taking the time for your gentle encouraging responses. Thanks Madalena.


Barbara Keith

3 Years Ago

Inspiration? It comes to me just before sleep.. I get an idea and have to write it down because - these days - the memory just isn't what it used to be. I usually do animals of just about any type but I've recently discovered the joy of painting flowers (that inspiration came from the gifts my cousin's children gave me after she passed. She was into watercolor and I avoided it for over 40 years). Now, that takes care of the "ideas".. to keep me going it's music!! I always listen to something and that range goes from smooth jazz to rock and roll, to rhythm and blues, to country to classics to anything that sounds good... even Gregorian Chants!!
Then there's the oddities that "happen". I'll be working on a piece when suddenly a "vision" pops into my head of a complete piece - very exciting stuff that - and I, again, have to write it down with a little thumbnail sketch to help me remember. You have no idea how many ideas I've lost over the years for lack of pen and paper!!


Bonnie Goedecke

3 Years Ago

I am inspired to paint by observing special lighting effects that create interesting accents on a scene or person. Also emotional connections to what I am painting gives me inspiration. Sometimes just have to step back for awhile until it comes to me.


Madalena Lobao-Tello

3 Years Ago

Alys Caviness-Gober, Catherine Basten, Nikki Frazier, Nicla Rossini, Catherine Howard, Heart On Sleeve ART, Sydne Archambault, Sophie Vigneault
Thank you so much to share with us!!

- Buddha suggests to those who need inspiration for their art to go to it before a perfectly blank wall until its design, composition and subject reveals itself. - Jack Rutherford


Madalena Lobao-Tello

3 Years Ago

- Inspiration arrives as a packet of material to be delivered. - John Updike

- I learned... that inspiration does not come like a bolt, nor is it kinetic, energetic striving, but it comes into us slowly and quietly and all the time, though we must regularly and every day give it a little chance to start flowing, prime it with a little solitude and idleness. - Brenda Ueland

- If that condition of mind and soul which we call inspiration lasted long without intermission, no artist could survive it. The strings would break and the instrument be shattered into fragments. - Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky

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Gun Legler

3 Years Ago

I most often get inspred by looking at other people's images. I can see a mood or just a detail and something in me wakes up. Then everything seems to go by itself. I feel guided in a lot of my images, not in all. I love to play with forms and textures, and suddenly something appeares that I build on. I never, or almost never, I start with a plan, therefor my images are a mess of motives and techniques, but it is so I am :-)

Förgot to say I am fascinated with peoples faces, the things that happen in the eyes and how they mirror the mood and the soul.


AnnaJo Vahle

3 Years Ago

This is a great discussion. What a wonderful question....and I would have to say that it could be anything or everything. It could be my feelings or something that I see. I never seem to run out of ideas. I dream them when I sleep and am conscious of them every where I go. I have painting on my mind at all times. It may be simmering on the back burner of my mind while I am busy with life, but it is always there. I wish that I had enough time to paint all of my ideas. Unfortunately, I am a rather slow painter. Sigh. I agree with most everything that everyone has said previously in this conversation. I most certainly agree with the saying you quoted...

“Creativity is essentially a lonely art. An even lonelier struggle. To some a blessing. To others a curse. It is in reality the ability to reach inside yourself and drag forth from your very soul an idea.” ~Lou Dorfsman

Never having heard that exact quote, it is something that I have reminded my friends from time to time. I studied art as therapy when in college and have used it for my own therapy. To be an artist, I believe, is to be very lucky, indeed. I can't imagine life without it.


Fran Hogan

3 Years Ago

I am usually surprised by what has inspired me. Sometimes it is remembering an image from a dream, sometimes it is just a flash of an image I've passed in my car, sometimes an idea comes to me seemingly from nowhere. Sometimes it is just a word I hear that triggers an image. Sometimes nothing inspires me for weeks or months, then suddenly the ideas won't stop!


Angela Davies

3 Years Ago

I really like and relate to the quote by Kafka! Some of my most inspired work has occured when I sit quietly looking out the window of my studio. When I go out searching for inspiration; it is not always there. Inspiration seems to be more of an inner thing for me.


Sandra Pena de Ortiz

3 Years Ago

My main source of God, His grace and His plan to dispense Himself in man, to be one with man, to transform man, and to build up His church, which will consummate in the New Jerusalem. Whenever, I see something that I want to photograph it is because some aspect of it transports me to the divine and mystical realm of Christ and brings me closer to Him. Also, many other times, I photograph things that inspire me because of their beauty, emotional content, or the eliciting of important memories. Many times, going back through these images I discover aspects in them that inspire me as I also find God in the image. I acknowledge that my visions and inspirations differ from those of many but I find joy in sharing what I see to others within the descriptions of my work, because I think those who appreciate art also want to know what is behind the artist's inspiration for the specific piece.



Debi Starr

3 Years Ago

If you asked me this question every day, I may have a different answer every day. Everything everyone else has mentioned before me (emotions, nature, beauty, people, relationships, travel, things, etc.) definitely influences my inspirations, but not always the same way or together. I feel my creativity is a necessity daily in some way or another and many times it comes spontaneously. My head is overfilled with ideas I have not yet begun. I have found that I get many ideas while exercising and then I can't wait to get started working on new projects. Visiting artist's studios, galleries, art fairs and art exhibits definitely inspires me, too. In fact, the smell of oil paints is very stimulating...although I prefer acrylics for their drying capabilities, hence my spontaneity. I am a very high energy, high strung person and painting and drawing is one way I relax and's definitely therapeutic.


Nan Wright

3 Years Ago

I love this discussion.... because it made me think about what inspires me to paint. A question I have never addressed! When I first picked up the brush, inspiration came from just seeing if I could paint. Then, the challenge was to see how many different subjects I could paint. Then it wasn't long before I found that animals of all kinds really inspire me and they are what I loved most to paint. People fell into that same category. I am still evolving in the whole process. Looking at all the great works of art from all of you, inspiration comes to me to become a 'looser' painter. It may be an unrealistic goal of mine because I am so detail-oriented in everything I do. Thanks, Madalena, this is a very interesting topic.


Rhonda Humphreys

3 Years Ago

I am inspired by taking a walk alone and being close to nature.there is nothing more beautiful to me then to watch a bird take off in flight and feel the freedom they possess. Just looking around at all the beauty in the world inspires me. But truly the other place I go is to look at the fine work on FAA of all of you is inspirational.


Janet Antepara

3 Years Ago

Flipping through my sketchbook and seeing all of my sketches inspires to me create pieces from them. Looking at all of the amazing art here and other POD sites makes me want to create as well. I cannot create if I'm in a bad mood though, only if I'm happy.


Maria Urso

3 Years Ago

Great discussion Madalena! What inspires me most is the acknowledgement of those things in which I see or stumble upon which most people would overlook. From the tiniest baby grasshopper, to the aged lines in an elephant's skin, to the one leaf floating down a stream of shimmering sunlight to the darkest places of the earth or universe, there is beauty in it all, and it is all created by our Creator and created perfectly. To realize that those things most would consider ugly or unsightly or far from being art, if they would only consider the Source from which it came and was created. The very energy in the life of a forest draws me deeper into it's depths, the smell of the earth and to know from it, we humans were created. And my very deep love of ALL animals big and small, their very nature, their instinctive habits and the nurturing of their young never ceases to amaze me. These are the things that inspire me along with music. When I play music and decide to paint, I am no longer on earth, but in another world, a world of spiritual beings, not of flesh and blood, a world of peace, where all things co-exist in a peaceful and loving environment, where there is no judgment, bias or any other negativity. I forget about problems and illness and all those things that would drag a person down each and every day. I must confess, it's not only when I paint, but when I draw as well. It is me and the subject matter (usually animals) nothing else exists when I'm drawing.


Aniko Hencz

3 Years Ago

Personally, I do absolutely nothing. For inspiration I just follow my dreams - many of my works were inspired by a sequence or a whole dream. They can be really surreal sometimes, so I just wait for them to show up. In my opinion inspiration can not be forced; when I miss it, I just go beading or playing with my dog:) A shadow or a crack on the wall can inspire me as well as nature or voices, songs.


Lehua Pekelo-Stearns

3 Years Ago

"Art does not reproduce what is visible; it makes things visible." Paul Klee, artist.
I photograph each image to "tell it's story" and to reflect upon it's unique and strong visual aura. My inspiration is to share that with others thru my photography.


Marie Gale

3 Years Ago

What a great topic Madalena,

MUSIC is definitely my main source of inspiration...I listen to a lot of music and when a song triggers some emotions...(which happens with almost every song...!) an idea is born...and becomes an image...


Madalena Lobao-Tello

3 Years Ago


Good point!
I looked back some of your works. You're right, they are made of small big things, those that do every instant a unique moment.


Thank you Madalena, I am touched


Geeta Biswas

3 Years Ago

Madalena , you have started a nice discussion,only after reading 'What do you do to inspire yourself ? ' I thought about it...really what do I do ? Well, the answer is also so beautifully given here...

“Creativity is essentially a lonely art. An even lonelier struggle. To some a blessing. To others a curse. It is in reality the ability to reach inside yourself and drag forth from your very soul an idea.” ~Lou Dorfsman

I agree with this statement fully...I am inspired by ideas which come to me when I am alone and that is why my aloneness is a great blessing to me and I enjoy being alone and merged in my ideas...the creative process is going on as long as I am brimming with ideas....


Madalena Lobao-Tello

3 Years Ago

We can see in your artwork what you infinite force of inspiration!!


Madalena Lobao-Tello

3 Years Ago

Life is a great source of inspiration.

At times, perhaps, be a little hard, or perhaps our suffering, is only what we are able to bear. Neither more nor less.
For sometimes I feel that everything has been very hard, I am no longer capable of taking a single step, but art allows me to stand back and follow a few steps, until a new work brings me to keep fighting for what I think.


Jan Bickerton

3 Years Ago

What a great discussion Magdalena!
I am inspired by my own possessions. Collecting things together, pairing objects, moving 'treasures' from one room to sit next to another on a shelf. A treasure can be anything from a feather, seed head from the garden or an old tea cup and saucer. I will see shapes, or sometimes colour combinations which make me reach for my camera.
I'm also inspired by the work of others. Not to copy but to try something new to improve my craft.


I am inspired by men portraits, searching sensibility, expression of emotion in their eyes,
I am inspired by colors, light, music, emotions, dreams, and love in my abstracts
I am inspired by cats, their look, their so lovely attitudes
life, sun, wind, nature, all things around me give me imagination, feelings and inspiration ... and more and more ...


Glenna McRae

3 Years Ago

Madalena, I have thought a lot about the creative process. I am very right brained so music, colour, nature, something new that I've seen or felt inspires me.
Like most artists, I can be very emotional! But lately as I've seen your work and how you share your life and emotions through your art; I wonder if l I have been more of an observer or recorder of what I see around me. I truly desire to move in a direction where more my art has more depth or meaning! I'm searching for something that truly reaches others. Not there yet but hopefully that souce of inspiration will burst forth into a "new song or work of art!" glenna


I am inspired from travelling, my family and friends. On the other hand my emotions leads my hand and my best work comes into being when I am very angry or very happy.


Phyllis Beiser

3 Years Ago

I am inspired by the beauty and wonder that God puts before me each day as I open my eyes. No matter how bad circumstances bombard me, I still and always have tried to focus on beauty. I was once told by a dear friend many years ago that I could look at a mangy dog and find beauty somewhere in it! This is my inspiration....The Creator of all.


Ryno Worm Tattoos

3 Years Ago

Tattoos are inspiration. The art that people choose to display on the body and the pain they go through to keep that art with them forever. The human body is the most inspiring canvas!


Madalena Lobao-Tello

3 Years Ago

Heart On Sleeve ART ( great name)

Yes, emotions make us forget food, sleep, friends, love, everything...less create!


Hilda Lechuga

3 Years Ago

I am inspired by people, nature, and everything that happens around me. I am always on the path to an Art adventure. I love to experiment with new Art techniqes.


Heart On Sleeve ART

3 Years Ago

I am inspired by emotion. I do my best work when I am angry, remorseful, sad... I am also inspired by boredom. I refuse to be bored so I generally pick up a paint brush or my Nikon and get un bored!


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