The word “inspiration” comes from the Latin meaning “the act of breathing in”. And I found that the act of breathing in can often lead to hyperventilation — too much intake with no benefit. I have learned that if I want to accomplish anything, I need to quiet those voices of inspiration. I need to focus, limit myself, and slow my “breathing”. (Daniel Sroka)

Stop. Breathe. Allow yourself the luxury of doing nothing for a moment, or an hour, or even a day. It is in emptiness that inspiration will appear. (Carole Katchen)

"Quiet Plain" 11"x13" Acrylic on Canvas copyright 2010 Ruth Armitage

What moves men of genius, or rather what inspires their work, is not new ideas, but their obsession with the idea that what has already been said is still not enough. (Eugene Delacroix)

The painting above is part of my recent series “Quiet Solitude.”  I’ve been working mostly from memory and imagination for this series, with occasional peeks out the window. Who knows how long the inspiration will last, and whether I will be able to find something new to say about the subject each day? I can only show up and do the work.

I’ve recently enjoyed reading Loriann Signori’s blog regarding painting from memory. She has some fascinating insights. http://loriannsignori.blogspot.com/

Inspiration is a mysterious thing, often a process of associations stirring up memories and sensations…. ideas stimulate new uses of colors, textures and other elements of painting. This is quite the opposite of posing a figure and recording the image with visual accuracy.” (Skip Lawrence “Your goal: Expression not description” The Palette Magazine #36)

Skip’s quote above is a pretty accurate description of how I work, or how I try to work! Skip also talks about inspiration on his blog Skip Lawrence Studio Notes. He reminds us of the importance of having an idea that you’re passionate about before beginning a painting.

I am inspired by symbols and stories of the desire to bridge a gap. This could take the form of our conscious and our subconscious, between lovers, or between humanity and the divine. (Dana Levin)

At a certain point in your life, you have to stop looking outside to look internally for inspiration. (Catherine Nash)

Wishing you inspiration for your day!

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