So, over on Deviant Art, people have been creating these "Influence maps" for a while. I became aware of these earlier this week, and figured I'd goof off and try to make one while having a nice adult beverage. Boy was I wrong.
My real pool of influences is super crowded, and always growing. So, how does one choose who to put on the map? It's not that I Like the work of someone who made the list (J.C. Leyendecker for example) is "better" in my mind that someone who didn't (like maybe Norman Rockwell).
Ultimately, the fun part was, looking internally and asking "what kind of artist would I like to be one day?" For me, the answer is someone well rounded in two and three dimensions who can work physically and digitally. I'd like to have a better sense of color and a better sense of representing volumes. Along with all of that, I'd also like to to have just enough "style" to be distinctive, but not so much that I pigeonhole myself in a single creative direction.
I know, lot's of artists have similar goals, but once I defined those ideals as targets for which I could shoot, I could narrow down the list more by really looking at people I thought exemplified those attributes. Anyway, it's easy to take this as some kind of cerebral artist masturbation, but really, I think it was a cool way to ask myself questions I might not have otherwise, and I certainly feel a little more focused now.