Peaceful Morning, 2012, Jo-Ann Sanborn
acrylic on board, 5"x7"
I recently wrote about making original art. Its been said that nothing is truly original. So how do we grow as artists? Does our inspiration come from our deep within our own brain, or is it triggered by something we see? The answer may be a little of both.
Art History should be a part of what every artist knows. We look at the art of those who came before us. We also look at the work of our contemporaries, to see what they are doing. When we look at the work of others, what happens? Some assessing and some absorbing, and yes, maybe even some borrowing. But not stealing.
I know that I'm personally interested in seeing what other artists have done or are doing, particularly the work of other landscape painters. I often see something that I am drawn to in other artists work. I might post a copy of what interests me on my inspiration board, and look at it for days, trying to understand the technique or appreciating the delicateness of the work. Some of this will stay with me, and when the opportunity arises I might try the technique or use the color combination in a part of my painting.