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How 8 Female Creatives Find Their Inspiration
How to unleash your inner genius.
Art Stuff 24 Sep 2019

Ever wonder how artists unleash their inner genius? You would be fascinated how everyday objects, places, and habits can inspire these 8 female creatives to produce their best ideas.
Susan Philipsz
Credit and Copyright ©: Colin Davison +44 (0)7850 609 340 colin@rosellastudios.com www.rosellastudios.com
Image of Susan Philipsz via The Yellow Newspaper

“If you have a good idea, stick to it. Especially if realising the project is a long and demanding process, try to keep true to the spirit of the initial idea.  Daydream. Give yourself plenty of time to do nothing. Train journeys are good, Be open to your surroundings. I try to find inspiration in the character of the place I’m exhibiting in. It helps me if I can respond to something that is already there. Always have something to write with. I seldom draw these days, but I need a pen in my hand to think.  I like reading and watching movies, but mostly I find that it’s things I have seen or read a long time ago that come back to me. The things that you found inspiring when you were starting out usually stay with you.  Keep it simple. Be audacious.  It doesn’t always have to make sense.  I love silence. I can’t listen to music while I work and I need to be alone. I go through messy phases and tidy phases. Being messy during a tidy phase is never good, and vice versa.” – The Guardian, 2012 January
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Louise Bourgeios
Animals were a great source of inspiration for Bourgeois. Attempting to decipher her own behavior and relationships, she looked to animals and insects for qualities they might share with humans. “Identification – the power of identification is very strong. I lend the animal, I project the animal and shape my feelings,” she said. Bourgeois’ obsession with the spider, appears a lot within her work and is inspired by her mother. “The spider – why the spider? Because my best friend was my mother and she was deliberate, clever, patient, soothing, reasonable, dainty, subtle, indispensable, neat, and as useful as a spider.” – Another Magazine
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Image of Annie Leibovitz via Radical Reads
Annie Leibovitz
“I do my homework. When I was preparing to photograph Carla Bruni, the wife of Nicolas Sarkozy, the president of France, in the Élysée Palace, I looked at pictures of the palace. I looked at pictures of other people who had lived in the palace. Pictures of couples in love. Pictures that other photographers had taken of Bruni. She had been photographed many times before. I thought Helmut Newton had seen something in her that other photographers hadn’t. I knew she was a popular musician, and I listened to her music.” — Artspace, January 2019
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Image of Polly Morgan via The Times 
Polly Morgan
“Don’t wait for a good idea to come to you. Start by realising an average idea – no one has to see it. If I hadn’t made the works I’m ashamed of, the ones I’m proud of wouldn’t exist. Leave the house. Or better still, go to Battersea Dogs & Cats Home and rescue a staffie. I did so partly to get out more, as I was spending too much time surrounded by the same objects, within the same walls. The sense of guilt I feel when my dogs are indoors forces me out at regular intervals. One of my favourite new ideas came about when I stopped to examine a weed growing in the forest I walk in. Hard work isn’t always productive. Your brain needs periods of inactivity. I think of it as a field lying fallow; keep harvesting and the crops won’t mature. Don’t restrict yourself to your own medium. It is just as possible to be inspired by a film-maker, fashion designer, writer or friend than another artist. Cross-pollination makes for an interesting outcome. Don’t be afraid to scrap all your hard work and planning and do it differently at the last minute. It’s easier to hold on to an idea because you’re afraid to admit you were wrong than to let it go.” – The Guardian, 2012 January
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Image of Grace Coddington via BoF
Grace Coddington
“I think you have to live a little bit more in the moment and appreciate and see. It is what I’ve always done in my life — just look at where I am. That’s why I love going on the subway in the morning. There are so many wonderful people on the subway. I’m often sad that I only live three stops away from the office in Times Square, because I’m usually just working out who that crazy person is in the corner when I have to get off.” — Interview, November 2012
yayoi kusama art space
Image of Yayoi Kusama via Artspace 
Yayoi Kusama
“One day I was looking at the red flower patterns of the tablecloth on a table, and when I looked up I saw the same pattern covering the ceiling, the windows and the walls, and finally all over the room, my body and the universe,” she recalled “I felt as if I had begun to self-obliterate, to revolve in the infinity of endless time and the absoluteness of space.” – Sothebys September 2018
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Carine Roitfeld via Fashionista 
Carine Roitfeld
“Lots of people, they feel anxious because they think I’m judging them. No! I’m just looking, observing what they’re wearing, what they’re doing, because my inspiration comes from the street, from other people. You know, I’m just curious and I have a good sense of observation. And I can immediately transform this observation into ideas for fashion. That’s always how I work. I’m not going to books, I’m not going to reference a vintage shop. I’m not going to the past. I’m most inspired by what’s happening around me.” — The Cut, June 2019
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Image of Donatella Versace via National AE 
Donatella Versace
“Well, my muse changes all the time because I think every designer is a bit of a muse for themselves in a way — they just don’t want to say it … But as a designer, you always take facets of different people and you mix them together with your own thoughts and information and creativity and passion — because I think fashion has a lot to do with passion — and that’s where you get your inspiration.” — Interview, November 2011
By Peigi Mackillop

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