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The capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behaviour of someone or something, or the effect itself: influences. In this post, we dive deeper into being influenced by other artists.
As an artist, you may want to be influenced by others, however, mostly, stay away from copying someone else’s work to remain original. Everything around us somehow has (either a conscious or unconscious) effect on the work that an artist produces. This can come from people, something you experienced and even every tangible or intangible thing around us. So, where do other’s get their influences from in the work they create? How does this process look for them? We spoke with Jitsein Winston, Mitch Barrett and Paula DeStefanis who shared their view on this question.
“By observing others’ art, I typically get a specific feeling about the piece. If it is an overwhelmingly good feeling I tend to try and look in-between the lines and figure out what the artist is trying to convey.”, says Jitsein. In the work that Jitsein creates, he analyses both the story an artist is telling and the work they produce. When he sees that an artist has an underlying point they are making in a piece, he takes note on how to make subliminal points in the work that he creates himself as well.
Paula, an artist and painter from the USA, says that the type of influence of different artists can vary greatly. Most positively, it helps her to find beauty in the most mundane of things. By doing this, it makes her stand still for a moment, look around her and accept the wonder around us that we take for granted.
Instead of influences in the world around that drive him, Mitch Barrett is influenced by other artists. “For centuries artists have influenced each other, from art movement to art movement, from culture to culture and generation to generation”, he said.
Mitch, his first influence was from Salvador Dali. After being fascinated by a poster of Dali’s “Metamorphosis of Narcissus” that was on permanent display in the hallway of his high school, he was inspired in a blink of an eye. When he started working as an artist, he collaborated with Ernst Fuchs, a friend of Dali’s and founder of “Fantastic Realism”. He was a person that influenced his work greatly. Years later, Mitch moved to Vienna and made frequent visits to the Belvedere Museum. “Seeing Gustav Klimt’s “The Kiss”, ultimately led to influence on my painting: Intimacy”, he said.