jjcommunity How much of what you create really comes from you? I think it's a fascinating discussion. I've had times in my career where I felt like, if I wasn't 100% original, I was cheating. Ive talked to more than one person that made me feel like if we aspire to shoot like someone else, we're plagiarists. Here's my question to you. Why is it so important for you to be original? Do you handcuff yourself creatively by not being bold enough to steal from others the things that really turn you on ?
In my experience, I'm more fulfilled and more productive when I open myself up to inspiration. Inspiration of all sorts. I'd encourage you to to actively seek out painters, cinematographers, photographers, anyone that inspires you. Then be strong enough to take whatever it is that moves you about their work. Its not weak. You're not breaking the rules. You're actually being faithful to what I'd suggest is the most important rule of all. Find what moves you. Then create more of it .
In my opinion that applies to the inspiration I get from Van Gogh as much as it does the warmth of the sunlight on my lawn last evening. I may find myself creating images with more bold colorful shapes like Van Gogh, or shooting images that are full of warming orange light. In either case the point is to find inspiration and create .
Stop worrying about being original. Here's how I see it. If you are passionate about what you are making, it is yours.

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