Inspiration by Eoin Lane


Eoin Lane is an Irish landscape artist and a writer. Whether through his use of language and the written word or though his paintings, Eoin represents a deep love of and synchronicity with the landscape of his native Ireland.

His colour palette and the textures found in his paintings bring to life the ancient landscape in which he spends countless hours. Accomplished in both mediums, Eoin is a rare and fascinating artist.

Sea Light, Omey Island, Connemara. Oil on Canvas 10 X 14 inches

In this Q&A Eoin talks about Inspiration and what first inspired him to paint, how inspiration informs his work now and offers advice on how artists can make the most of inspiration.

Q&A

What first inspired you to paint? Is there a particular painting, Artist or movement that inspired you the most?

I was twelve when I first painted in oil. An art class, open air on summer holiday at Renvyle in Connemara. My mum wanted to keep me quiet. Distract me for the afternoon. It worked. I’m still distracted and attracted by the light of the land. The sea green glass in the shallows of water, a flicker of light in between clouds, the scars of ridges carved into the mountains. I like to paint wild places I have known and loved. Connemara, the Mournes, Strangford Lough (where I’m based) and the North Coast of Antrim. Places I can feel inside like echoes. The feeling of being there which is helpful when you’re not in the hills but the studio. I write as well as paint and my first novel is about an artist who paints the sea. Writing is basically making things up and verbalising your self-conscious thoughts and landscape painting, I think is like making up what you think you see, feel, saw and remember – a visualising of your inner awareness. It’s a personal squinting of the eyes. An application of techniques by individual hands. Everyone sees something different and that’s what makes it poetic.

Damp Day in the Bog, Letterfrack, Connemara. Oil on Canvas 8 X 10 inches.

We went on holidays every year to Connemara. The summers definitely seemed brighter and sunnier back then. But sometimes it rained, poured down from the heavens with a white shroud of mist across the bogs. You read books on wet days or traipsed around the craft shops in Clifden. There was a gallery upstairs in Millars (downstairs was all richly coloured tweeds). You had to go up a steep spiral staircase into what felt to me like a sacred loft. It was packed with landscapes by Maurice Wilks, George Gillespie, Kenneth Webb, Maurice McGonigal. I was hooked. That was it. The colours, the skies, the fields. I never wanted those holidays to end, to have to go home to Dublin, back to school. But then I realised I’d found a way to take the landscape with me. I could paint it. I had a link. A special key. After school I went to Art College and chose Fashion Design, specialising in knitwear particularly wool and after many years designing in America and England I moved on to horticulture and the language of plants and then again in a later chapter to merchandising and the flavours of food when my partner and I ran our own bistro and giftshop. By now though I was painting again and the work of the early twentieth century Irish landscape painters like Humbert Craig, Frank McKelvey and Paul Henry was reconnecting me to where I first began with their bold compositions, strong sense of powerful form and their keen play of texture and light.

Sun on the Slopes, Baunoge, Connemara. Oil on Canvas, 8 X 8 inches.

What are your thoughts on inspiration and how does it influence your work? Is inspiration essential to paint or start a painting?

If you wait it will come. The sun. In a flash across the hills. Here it comes. Get it down. Lemon greening to lime. Now it’s gone. The clouds drift. The drizzle seeps. I am standing in a puddle of squelch. Boggy water, long, bronze grass. Painting. It’s August. There’s a wind. There always seems to be a wind in Connemara. The sun is back. Shining. Heat on my skin. The colours change. There is no one about. There never is where I go. Across the bog. Up the mountain. Sheep stare and baah. Wander off. Donkeys amble by. They have big brown eyes. Like marbles. Things to try and call up when I’m in the studio. I think it helps to be energised and looking forward to painting when you start a new canvas. But it doesn’t always work out like that. Days when the paint is moved around like sludge. Becomes muddy, a mess. Every artist goes through it. The off days. Brushes and knives, heavy and dead. Long grumbling sighs as you clean down the palette. But I always come back because I know (hope) it will find me again. They say a book will often find you at just the right time, when you’re ready to read it. The same can be said for painting, I think. The days when the paint just swims. You’re in the zone and you’re flying. Inspiration is when everything just seems to align and afterwards, you look at it and wonder ‘How did I do that?’ The desire to paint, the idea – that’s important, the rush to get started. But the real flash often comes only when you’re deep in the work and the whole thing is evolving. I often start with something quite specific in mind but end up with a completely different canvas which can be very exhilarating at times. But everyone is different. Some authors map out their books for example in great, lengthy detail before actually beginning while others just plunge in and see where it goes. Take your pick as a painter. I suspect most of us are somewhere in between.

Inishbofin Island in the Rain. Oil on Canvas, 8 X 10 inches
Blue Mountain, Baunoge, Connemara. Oil on Canvas, 8 X 10 inches

What advice would you give other Artists on finding inspiration?

I wouldn’t really presume to give advice, rather just a few random, meandering thoughts. At the moment, for example we’re surrounded by a lot of negativity which can be very draining. And depressing. Plus, we’re heading into the short days of winter. I can get very down if I can’t ‘get’ to my work. Things have a habit of infiltrating and we all have stuff. Currently in my circle, we are dealing with dementia, osteoarthritis and chronic back pain. And these and the knock-on effects can just get in the way. And so sometimes when I do get a window, I’m not always in the perfect or calmest of moods, not always thinking straight. Until I set up. And sometimes even just the basic routines can help. The squeezing out of the paint and the pungent smell. The arrangement of tools and the choice of canvas. When I get up every morning I look out at the sky. To see what is happening. And every day that vignette is like a painting in itself, a reminder, a connection to what I really love to do. But now it is winter with the evenings closing in and the rugged terrain of mountains and cliffs feels further away. In the shopping centre, there are fish in a tank. Tropical fish in black and gold bands, with rainbow coloured gills, little ones, thin ones all gliding around in and out through the caves cut from rocks made of large siting buddhas. And every week I stop. I look in through the glass in my mask. There’s a big, orange, fat one with lips like the knot of a balloon and little fairy fins that flap like toy wings. It swims up to the glass and flaps its fins as if it’s clapping, as if it’s happy to see me as I bend close in. Now, although I’m aware that this is a totally absurd delusion it doesn’t really matter because this fish does it every single week and inside my mask I am smiling. As I write this there are blue tits and coal tits zinging round the bird feeder. They dart really fast like arrows. They are pecking and poking and pecking. And sometimes in the silence of the studio, I find myself smiling because a trigger like that has just flashed through my mind. And then suddenly I’ve got it and the paint has snapped alive. Now, each to their own but there is a certain rush that comes when you get it just right. You can feel it inside and when you stop at the end of the day, you just know. Inspiration to me is a composite of triggers, tiny fragments that out of the blue can send you up a gear and transform a day from the dark of dementia to light.

Eoin’s debut novel BEYOND THE HORIZON published by Blackstone Publishing is out now online and through all good bookshops.

https://blackstaffpress.com/beyond-the-horizon-9781982641542

Eoin’s paintings can be found in the following galleries, The Trinity Gallery, Dublin. The Lavelle Gallery, Clifden. Gilmore, Fine Art, Holywood.
Caffrery’s Gallery, Ballina.

Follow Eoin on Instagram @eoin_lane_artist_writer for regular posts

Inspiration by Robert Rhodes


Robert Rhodes lives and works in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. His abstract paintings are both expressive and colourful and often reflect his appreciation of the landscape. Created using heavy layers of oil paint, Robert’s paintings embody a deep sense of poetry and contemplation. The thick oil paint becomes part of the painting’s identity and the luscious impasto gives a sculptural quality to his work.

Quarantine: Cold evening near Strasburg. Oil on linen. (2020)

In this Q&A Robert talks about Inspiration and what first inspired him to paint, how inspiration informs his work now and offers advice on how artists can make the most of inspiration.

Q&A

What first inspired you to paint? Is there a particular painting, Artist or movement that inspired you the most?

I began painting when I was 12. For reasons I don’t entirely recall, I started with the very Old World egg-tempera medium, doing very realistic landscapes of the place where I lived, the flatlands of the Mississippi River delta of Northeast Arkansas. It was something I just began doing. It seemed very natural. The only person who taught me at first was my mother, a classical pianist who also happened to be a very gifted draftsman. I still have drawings she did of my friends and me in my childhood. I remember being drawn to painters such as the old masters, as well as to others such as NC Wyeth and Howard Pyle, and to Thomas Hart Benton.

Quarantine: Moonlight and clouds, Lancaster County. Oil on wood. (2020)
Quarantine: Dawn, Woodward Hill. Oil on wood. (2020)

What are your thoughts on inspiration and how does it influence your work? Is inspiration essential to paint or start a painting?

To me, what people call inspiration is something of an illusion, and perhaps even a delusion — as if waiting for lightning to strike were a meaningful way to get anything done. My pictures are very emotional statements, and are guided, I think, by a progression of impulses that show me the way.

Winter: A snowless landscape. Oil on Arches paper. (2015)

If these impulses I experience are to guide me effectively, I find it best to be open and willing to accept them. And the best way to do this is to keep working and listening, and to have a daily practice that makes it possible to see where these impulses lead. I can’t imagine a better way to spend what time I have left to me in this world.

Quarantine: Near Eastland Friends, Little Britain. Oil on wood. (2020)

See more of Robert’s artwork here and follow him on Instagram @robertrhodesartist

Inspiration by Nichola Campbell


Working from her studio near Lewes in East Sussex, Nichola’s ink paintings and collages convey an appreciation for the natural world. Inspired by the environment around her such as the forests and coastline of Sussex, her work is imbued with a romanticism and deep connection to the landscape.

Nichola’s approach is experimental, using lightfast inks, she often incorporates the picture frame as part of the work, creating fascinating paintings that invite the viewer into the landscape.

Black Rock, Ink framescape

In this Q&A Nichola talks about Inspiration and what first inspired her to paint, how inspiration informs her work now and advice on how artists can make the most of inspiration.

Q&A

What first inspired you to paint? Is there a particular painting, Artist or movement that inspired you the most?

I spent a lot of time drawing, painting and making things as a child and I was probably inspired to do so because I was struggling with reading and other work at school. I started painting again about 7 years ago because I think there was a need inside me to express myself creatively to achieve a feeling of being content. I’m not sure there is any specific painting, Artist or movement that has inspired me the most, but I have loved visiting the British Museum and my favourite place is the V&A because I am also interested in art history and the decorative arts.

Mantle of Autumn, Ink framescape

What are your thoughts on inspiration and how does it influence your work? Is inspiration essential to paint or start a painting?

For me, inspiration is something to feed and encourage. All you need is a spark of interest to get you going and from this you grow more inspired upon new discoveries. It all starts with something that I’m fascinated by, or admire, it’s personal of course but it can be anything, from the way light hits a surface, a colour one loves, a period in history, a person, an experience or an emotion. My habit is to learn more and more about what I’m curious about and then with a greater understanding, you can do it in your own way.

Riding the Breeze, Ink framescape
Autumn Spectacular, Ink on panel

What advice would you give other Artists on finding inspiration?

Rediscover your child-like interest in things, try to forget about everything else that is going on around you and just be true to yourself and your work.


See more of Nichola’s work on her website www.nicholacampbell.art and follow him on Instagram @nichola.campbell

Inspiration by Luke E Tucker


Luke Tucker is an oil painter based out of the Columbia River Gorge. Through his moody and often muted landscapes, he explores his Pacific Northwest home, using memories and photographs to guide his hand. Luke picked up the brush after years of struggling with addiction, searching for a discipline to anchor him in sobriety. He has established his own style and breed of tonal landscape that is ethereally atmospheric and distinct. Luke currently lives in The Dalles, OR with his wife and son.

City lights, River Town

In this Q&A Luke talks about Inspiration and what first inspired him to paint, how inspiration informs his work now and offers advice on how artists can make the most of inspiration.

Q&A

What first inspired you to paint? Is there a particular painting, Artist or movement that inspired you the most?

I discovered painting, sort of by accident, during the early stages of my recovery from alcohol abuse. At the beginning of 2018 I was at a point where I was sober longer than I had been in a very long time. Feeling good and in desperate need of something to do with my new found freedom, I remember asking myself, what would I be doing if there was no one here? How would I spend my time just me and myself in a vacuum of sorts? Maybe the answer to that question, I thought, would send me in the right direction. I came to the conclusion that in my own post apocalyptic world, where I am the only one left, I would most likely be creating weird shit to occupy my time until I croak. Strange sculptures, bizarre bunkers, imagery of the past, the works.

So I ran with it. I happened to have three 5 X 5 canvases tucked away in storage that I pulled out and started painting away. I was immediately pulled into the process and lifes background noise seemed to fade away. I was hooked.

I started out painting pretty aimlessly and painting whatever came to mind, with no real vision. I wasn’t really a student of the craft until I saw the works of British contemporary landscape painter, Kurt Jackson. I was blown away by what a landscape painting could be. Something with depth, movement, color and a uniqueness that I hadn’t seen before. It inspired me to really buckle down and focus on forging my own unique voice through painting.

Insufficient lighting in my makeshift shed/studio inadvertently led me to one of my biggest influences, American Tonalism. I was inspired by how the masters of the movement were able to portray mood through muted colors and atmosphere, something that I now value above anything else while creating my own works. As landscape painters, we are kind of behind the eight ball as far as being able to portray a clear message or meaning in a given piece. It was inspiring to see that ultimately the mood or feeling of a painting can be just as moving as a painting with a concise message.

Deschutes, evening, Oil on canvas
River, new growth, Oil on canvas

What are your thoughts on inspiration and how does it influence your work? Is inspiration essential to paint or start a painting?

I am currently in a great place to talk about inspiration because right now I have ZERO of it. I’ll go through phases of being completely lost and questioning everything about my process and subject matter. Pacing back and forth, staring into the stupid blank canvas before me. Suddenly painting seems more like work than play.

But ultimately it is the work that unlocks the elusive door to inspiration. Very rarely does inspiration just appear out of thin air. In my experience, inspiration is something that is sought after and usually comes after a series of failures. The feeling of inspiration after failure is a high I think most painters are chasing. There is nothing like being able to convey your ideas accurately and artistically as in a given painting.

So I definitely do not think inspiration is essential to starting a painting. Most of the time I find myself being inspired halfway through or even towards the end of my process. The important part is to simply paint and put in the work, it’s a proven formula that WILL provide inspiration eventually.

Deschutes, spring, Oil on canvas

What advice would you give other Artists on finding inspiration?

Keep grinding it out. Paint all the time. Think about your work. Be mindful of your surroundings and opportunities to cultivate inspiration. Whether that be through specific research or getting up early to catch the morning light.

I’ve come to believe that painting is 90% work and 10% inspiration so keep on working and the rest will come.


See more of Luke’s work on his website www.letucker.com and follow him on Instagram @luke_e_tucker

Inspiration by Katy Brown


Katy Brown has exhibited in London, Bath, Cornwall and her native home, Jersey. For the last twenty years she has painted the ethereal landscapes of both Jersey and Cornwall, where she now lives as artist in residence on the Earl of Edgcumbe’s Estate. Inspiration from nature and its transient elements have always been integral to her work.

Tadpole Cathedrals, Oil on canvas

In this Q&A Katy talks about Inspiration and what first inspired her to paint, how inspiration informs her work now and offers advice on how artists can make the most of inspiration.

Q&A

Hi Katy, what first inspired you to paint?

I grew up in a creative household. My Grandfather used to lecture in The Arts within a library in London. My Mother painted wonderful, delicate watercolour classical studies and my Father made beautiful pottery influenced by the St Ives Movement, especially the Bernard Leach Pottery

Gradually, I realised that art was the subject I wished to immerse myself in and at 16, I purely focused upon Art subjects at school, where our art tutors were highly supportive and the art block was very inspiring.

I was very fortunate to grow up on the North Coast of the Island of Jersey, where the landscape is both beautiful and wild, with a light pure and luminescent. The bay nearest to my family home is submerged when the tide is up, however, when it goes out, a breathtaking beach with red granite cliffs and a series of caves are revealed. One cave in particular has beautiful fiery red walls with a freezing cold waterfall that pelts down over smooth boulders that are covered in emerald seaweed and turquoise pools in the dips and gullies. This beach and the colours of the Island were the subject of my first solo show in the Jersey Arts Centre after I graduated from Winchester School of Art. The exhibition was called ‘Plemont Bay, The Dreaming Grounds’. The show was made in Brighton, where I had secured a little garret studio before leaving college. 

The success of this show meant that I was able to consider making a simple living from making paintings. The Island colours still have a strong presence in my pieces today, even though I’m currently living in Cornwall.

Summertime Fields, Oil on panel

Is there a particular artist or movement that inspired you the most?

As a teenager I visited Spain, Italy and Prague with my school. With each visit, we saw many Old Masters Paintings and it was whilst in Venice that I deeply resonated with the Venetian Style of painting, which typically used the process of layering and blending colours to achieve a glowing richness

Joseph Mallord William Turner’s Romantic paintings of Venice capture the exquisite essence of this floating city, and his have always been works that I return to for inspiration. The Romantic notion of The Sublime is where one is overcome by awe, reverence and at times terror, by the beauty in nature. This emotional understanding transcends rational thought patterns, words or language. I have always been drawn in by paintings that express this state of all-encompassing reverence for our world.

As a student, I was encouraged to view the paintings of Avis Newman in Camden Arts Centre. The series of abstract paintings and objects by Newman appeared to be floating within space and time, suspended in a deep, delicate network of marks and webs. These simple yet complex monochromatic pieces were beautifully accomplished and polished, their scale perfect for the sublime essence exuded.

For my thesis, I chose to explore The Sublime because the challenge of presenting and defining the illusive and indefinable, seemed a fitting path to follow for my own painting practise. I titled my study ‘Now The Sublime is like this’ and I followed the thread from the first recorded definition of the Sublime from the 4th Century by Saint Augustine, through Romantic Painters such as Caspar David Friedrich (The Sea of Ice), John Constable (The Hay Wain) and J.M.W. Turner (Snow Storm) right the way through to Edvard Munch (White Night), and the more contemporary installation artists; James Turrell (the Roden Crater, Painted Desert, Arizona, a gateway to the contemplation of light, time and landscape) as well as Anya Gallaccio’s transitionary sculpture, Intensities and surfaces (Wapping Pumping Station).

The Magical Field oil on panel

What are your thoughts on inspiration & how does it influence your work?

People can be inspired by anything, it just depends upon how you perceive it.

During the first year of my painting degree, our tutor asked us to spend several days depicting the corner of a room, in black and white, perhaps with a light Naples Yellow added in. Essentially the corner was just a blank space, however, the longer we looked, the more there was to observe…the play of light, or indeed absence of it, was what brought the void to life whilst providing a painterly focus of presence within the space.

The foremost inspirational trigger for my paintings is being consumed by landscape, to the point where the moment I find myself in, is completely absorbed by that experience, that moment, and in turn an evolutionary journey sparked by that experience. It is the motivation behind my work. Often, I find myself caught in between my heart and my head when trying to capture a moment. This is because I will urgently look for my mobile to photograph the scene that is grabbing my attention, yet, if I stay present and simply observe the event, then it is more likely to sink in as a lasting memory.

I have watched footage of India where Howard Hodgekin is sitting in one spot for hours at a time, purely to immerse himself and capture the moment because it is then that it is etched in his mind. He is then able to return, perhaps years later, to a canvas with the ability to know what he is expressing and thus therefore how he is going to paint it.

Blue, Oil on panel

Is inspiration essential to start a painting?

When beginning a picture, I believe it is important to have a starting point for a painting, especially as an abstract artist. My tutor said ‘You can’t make an abstract painting out of nothing.’.. there has to be a subject upon which you are basing your work. For me, as an abstract painter of landscape, there are themes that return time and time again.

I read recently that Picasso once said ‘Inspiration has to find you at work’, which I believe is true. You cannot always predict when you will feel inspired. As a practicing painter for well over 20 years, I would say it is important to turn up if you want to make the work. Some days it is hard. Some days you are unsure of what it is that you are trying to say, or how to say it, but perseverance pays off and when it does, and you are in the zone, there is nothing like it.

Before the Harvest, Oil on linen

What advice would you give other artists on finding inspiration?

Inspiration seems to be a delicate, illusive entity. One can’t hold it too tightly, as it is more of an intelligent feeling than a process. In order to capture the initial spark of inspiration, it can be useful to put it down in the form of a few descriptive words or a quick sketch in a notebook kept to hand. These ideas can then be collected and considered later if one does not have the chance to act upon it immediately. If you can respond in the moment by producing a painting, then the essence of the experience will be fresh. If there is a gap between the moment of intuitive observation and the act of committing the moment to canvas or another surface, then the painting may convey a more dream-like quality.

My partner and I, and many other artists experience the process of making art rather like a meditation. The more one gently focuses and places oneself within the realm or zone of what one wishes to say (in this case using the language of paint), then all the more magic can be brought to a piece, as an expression of the self’s unique truth.

Simultaneously, it is as if one is a conduit for unconscious universal truth. 

I try to remain open where the painting may lead and find the idea that you can travel to, and explore infinite places within the dimensions of a 2D plane, frankly, mind blowing.

Lastly I would say in the long term, choose a subject that captures and holds your attention. One that you find yourself returning to often. Be open to play and experiment with materials, make your own implements, research paint, brushes and surfaces. Find a language of marks, of colours, of processes that excite you, and essentially, that is your own language within.


See more of Katy Brown’s work at www.katybrown.co.uk and follow her on Instagram at @katybrownartist

Inspiration by R.K.Blades


Richard K Blades is an artist from the UK. Working in the English Romantic Tradition of Landscape painting, his work is very much focused on the emotional impression that the landscape creates. Often capturing fleeting moments in time, the ephemeral and sublime nature of light is a key inspiration for his Oil Paintings. Richard is also a teacher and works with artists to help them find inspiration and carve their own creative path.

East Coast Storm (After Seago), Oil on canvas

In this Q&A Richard talks about Inspiration and what first inspired him to paint, how inspiration informs his work now and offers advice on how artists can make the most of inspiration.

Q&A

What first inspired you to paint? Is there a particular painting, Artist or movement that inspired you the most?

I always enjoyed art when I was younger, however, I didn’t become truly inspired to become an artist until I was in my mid 20’s. I had seen some paintings in a magazine whilst waiting in a Doctors surgery that created the initial spark. Something about those paintings, the artist whom I can’t remember, had a real impact on me. It was my first moment of true inspiration and in that moment, it opened the door to my urge to learn more. 

Living down in Cornwall at the time, I flung myself headfirst into art. The paintings in the magazine I had seen, gave me a reference point and soon I was becoming obsessed with painters such as Turner, Rothko and some of the St Ives school artists, Peter Lanyon being one.

I was very fortunate to meet two practising artists early in my journey, Heath Hearn and Katy Brown. Both of them helped me to nurture my passion and assist me with how to take painting seriously. Over the years that inspiration grew and evolved, as did my skills and identity as a painter. 

I went to Art school, however, it wasn’t until I experienced some difficulties in my life that art became the framework through which I was able to heal and redirect my life. I began painting every day and taught myself to paint in a way that brought me a great deal of focus and growth.

Symphony, Oil on board

What are your thoughts on inspiration and how does it influence your work? Is inspiration essential to paint or start a painting?

For me, inspiration works in a couple of ways. There is the inspiration that may arise from something I see from being out and about, or from a picture I find online, such as a landscape – or the way the clouds are moving and thus affecting the light of a particular scene. 

Then there is also the inspiration that is at the core of my creativity which serves as the motivation for becoming the artist that I am today.


These two manifestations of inspiration are intrinsically linked and are the fuel for my practice.

Sometimes I will see something that just captivates me and I will take a photograph or screenshot. I never copy the photograph, the inspiration I derive is always much more about the essence of the scene and not the details. I find that focusing on copying a photograph can lead to bypassing my inspiration. My philosophy has always been to let photography be photography and paint be paint. However, visual resources for inspiration are key to my practice. I have thousands of photographs, sometimes multiples of the same scene. I will never work from them but instead, have them there for reference. When painting I will keep these photos out of my line of sight, usually behind me as I paint.


I am also a big fan of utilising technology and have used my iPad and iPhone for many years. I use them not only for photography, but also to work on ideas for paintings. The ‘Procreate’ app gives me the space to play whilst on a train or away from my studio. The ability to ‘paint’ quickly on my device when inspiration arises, is now integral to my process. Most of my Oil Paintings begin as sketches created on my iPad.

Springtime, Oil on board

What advice would you give other Artists on finding inspiration?

Inspiration is such a subjective thing so every artist is completely different and having worked with many artists in the groups I run, I have found that their sources of inspiration are as varied and diverse as their personalities and life experiences. I am a big believer in intuition and being able to recognise inspiration on a visceral level. Like love, you will know it when you feel it. There is no right or wrong way to be inspired. It is what you do with it that matters. 

Inspiration is the spark that can ignite a fire but for me, painting is the fuel that sustains that fire. The spark is only part of the process and creative action is the fuel. Practising artists often understand this early on as the initial inspirational aspect of the creative process can evaporate quite quickly. Starting to model that inspiration into reality on the canvas really helps you anchor it within reality. This means that even though the initial inspiration has long since vanished from your mind, you have taken control and begun to make it something material, something that now exists in this world.

I also think that other people’s art is also a very important aspect for artists to draw inspiration from. I will often ask artists what kind of art, or which artists speak to them the most? With whose style do you most identify? I often make a list of artists with whom I most identify, such as;

JMW Turner
John Constable
Fred Cuming
Gustave Courbet (Sea)
Edward Seago

Having these Artists as inspiration can help you see yourself as part of that style, genre or tradition. Being in a studio or out in the landscape can be a lonely experience, but knowing you are in good company can help inspire you, especially when one is feeling a little lacking in the inspiration department.

To finish, I would like to say that inspiration is, in many ways, a frame of mind.
Creative skills are learned and whilst inspiration occurs naturally, learning how to use it can also be a part of the learning process. I have worked with all kinds of people, from 8-year-olds to people in their 90’s. Age and lack of creative experience doesn’t disqualify anyone, as inspiration is a frame of mind and is accessible to anyone and everyone

Approach, Oil on panel

See more of R.K.Blades work at richardkbladesartist.co.uk and on Instagram at @r.k.blades_art