Blank Canvas: Who Inspires You?

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Another installment of Blank Canvas, where Go Media asks the readers to tell us what they’re thinking. This week’s topic: Who inspires you?

We want to hear about the designers, illustrators and other creative types whose work or personality has had a big influence in your creative career. Inspiration sources can be people you know, or just people whose work you know and love.

I’ll get things started with some of my inspirations:

As an illustrator, much of my inspiration comes from other illustrators and cartoonists. Growing up, I was mesmerized by the artists in MAD Magazine, which pretty much set me on the art path throughout my life. In particular (and in no particular order): Mort Drucker, Sergio Aragones, Jack Davis and Don Martin. Being a fan or monster and wild creatures, of course I was influenced and inspired by B.K. Taylor (the Odd Rods specifically), Ed “Big Daddy” Roth (of course!) as well as Stephen Blickenstaff. Rob Bottin‘s special effects work on John Carpenter’s The Thing was a huge, huge influence on me as a kid. I was blown away by the ingeniously creative and demented creature designs he came up with for that film. The late special effects guru Stan Winston also had constantly amazing creature and character design coming out of his studio.

As I got older, different artists inspired me. Robert Williams was a huge inspiration (and still is), as well as the biomechanical style  originator H.R. Giger, psychedelic visionary painter Alex Grey, and just about all of the regular contributing artists to the Book of the SubGenius. Movie poster master illustrator Drew Struzan was also a huge inspiration growing up as was psychedelic cartoonist Rick Griffin.

Some other inspring artists: cartoonist Jim Woodring, illustrator extraordinaire Von Glitschka, and Rion Vernon’s Pin-Up Toons. I’m sure there are tons more, but these are the artists I can recall off the top of my head as being huge inspirations to me.

I have to give a special nod to former cartoonist and filmmaker Robert Rodriguez. I’m a huge film buff, and I love the creativity-inspiring extras on every Rodriguez DVD. His cooking classes aren’t bad either! Rodriguez just has an extremely infectious and inspiring personality for creative people in any medium.

So that’s me. Who inspires you? Sound off in the comments and please share links when possible. Go!

Discussion

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