What inspires you to not just make art, but to be a better artist?
This is a hard question, because the answer is so broad! I suppose the simplest most pared-down answer is that I have a need to make beautiful things (I’ve always been product-oriented rather than process-oriented, as they say), and that need drives me both to create AND to keep pushing myself to improve, to better achieve the beauty I aim for.
But that’s only a piece of it. Simple beauty is not enough, and at its basest is mere decoration. At its best, though, it’s something transcendental: a piece of art that communicates well, that has feeling, that moves you somehow is the most beautiful sort of art, and such beauty can be entirely independent of the notion of ‘aesthetic’ appeal.
So, the things that affect and move me - literature (mmm Shakespeare. But also Tolkien and McKinley and Le Guin and so many others, I could go on and on and on), films, other people’s art (the main reason I spend so much time here on tumblr; it’s SO inspiring), people both real and fictional, things in the world around me ranging from typical to unexpected - things that make me think, feel, that make me want to pass what I feel on to others - those things are what inspire me to make art. And because I make art in response to being moved, I want that art to be worthy of the things that moved me. I can think of no better motivation to be a better artist.