How Minted Artists Find Inspiration in Faraway Places

We’re far from the first to hype the benefits of stepping out of the your comfort zone. Whether it’s shaking up the status quo with a slightly different routine, taking a hike just a few miles away, or traveling to the other side of the world, new places and new experiences do wonders for creative inspiration.

For this edition of #WhatInspiresMe, when we asked Minted artists Susan Brown and Ana Sharpe how travel inspires their creativity, they sung the graces of their recent vacations.

Susan Brown
The Wisconsinite finds inspiration in Florida every winter

My husband and I spend January and February each year living in a pink house on the Florida Emerald Coast. To say that the vibrant Florida colors provide inspiration is almost an understatement. The sun is so bright and clear that it makes me, a Northerner obsessed with black and navy blue, fall in love with pastels— shutters, furniture, art, clothing, even pastel cars all look chic and sophisticated in this friendly climate. Primary colors are equally compelling: true, pure, saturated, happy.

Sunsets, palm trees, all things nautical, Southern magazines, and the relaxed lifestyle provide me with fresh ideas and themes to explore in my design work. New routines and experiences recharge my brain and inspire me to keep learning and improving. And did I mention that it’s just a tad warmer than Wisconsin this time of year?

An Angle” Save the Date Card by Susan Brown

Holiday Pastels” photo card by Susan Brown

Ana Sharpe
The New Jersey artist finds inspiration in Barcelona and beyond

I believe you can get inspiration from many places, but nothing makes it come so naturally as when I’m with my 4-year-old twin girls or traveling. When I lived in Brazil, 15 years ago, my first major international trip was to New York City, and I remember how importantly and positively it impacted my life, because I became more open to new things.

I enjoy the feeling of full immersion into a new culture—using all my senses, from the taste of a new food or the smell of new gardens, to the touch of new textures. Experiencing new places influences my work and style, adding more layers and meaning to my creative process.

My latest cultural trip was to Barcelona, an endlessly inspiring town. A simple walk down Las Ramblas or stroll through Park Güell is to experience Barcelona’s best. From the architectural buildings of Antoni Gaudí, to the surrealism art of Salvador Dalí and paintings of Pablo Picasso, to the mosaics of Juan Miró, I met a vibrant city that together with my homeland, Brazil, became one of my favorite places in the world. I dream now of repeating that experience with my husband and daughters and visiting many other interesting places.

Geo Heart” Valentine’s Day Foil Card by Ana Sharpe

Fun in the Snow” Children’s Birthday Party Card by Ana Sharpe

How to Make Goals That Stick
How does food inspire your creativity?
Does routine inspire or stifle your creativity?
Has anything ever scared you so much it’s inspired you?

Published February 10, 2016 • Become part of the Minted Artist Community—submit to a Challenge here.

  1. Susie

    So lovely to read both of these! Love getting a small peek into other artists’ inspiration. 🙂