We asked artists: Where do you find inspiration?

—Art by Colin Ruel

This week, The MV Times Calendar section continues prying into the lives of local artists and writers. Some are loving the solitude of the Island right now. Others fled for warmer or less isolated climates months ago. So we asked:

Do you go somewhere, on-Island or off, for inspiration? What else is currently inspiring your work?

  • My husband and I took a trip to Barcelona last October, and the works of Gaudí crept into my soul and served as inspiration to me. His color and design, as well as his energy, serve as my latest muse. —Donna Straw
  • As a photographer I went to Panama, a full transit of the Canal both old and new, then Costa Rica and Colombia, along with a few other places. It has always been a dream to go to Colombia to shoot. I absolutely loved Old Town in Cartagena! The colors are so vibrant. I am especially glad I went in December, before the Zika scare. I will be showing some of the photographs at the gallery this summer season, and also doing a slideshow and Q and A. —Louisa Gould
  • I am going to Newport to a fancy-shmantzy inn for a few days (for more solitude). —Nancy Aronie
  • I’m living in Brooklyn right now, which is inspiring in that I am surrounded by museums and galleries and artists, but in another way the city is disgusting, dirty, and stressful. I think that gives me a sense of perspective and longing for the country and the absence of so much humanity, which is good for painting. —Colin Ruel
  • My inspiration comes, for the most part, when it gets dark out or when the sun starts to go down, and I can go just about anywhere outdoors on the Island and be inspired. This is a very magical place. —Christopher Wright
  • I never have to go anywhere for inspiration. I get everything I need right here on the Island. —Susan Branch
  • I’m inspired wherever I go, wherever I am … I carry an internal studio and create works wherever I go. —Carol Brown Goldberg
  • Every spring I teach a class on Comics at Rhode Island School of Design, and find my students’ enthusiasm and creativity inspiring. —Paul Karasik
  • I am actually working in the Elizabeth Islands right now. But funnily enough, where I go for inspiration is back to Martha’s Vineyard! Being among friends and the creative buzz of the Island is always inspiring. I’m also inspired, possibly driven, by the rapidly changing times. I feel the need to preserve on canvas who we are and the better aspects of the times we live in. —Elizabeth Whelan
  • I am always inspired by color. The winter light is so fantastic, I recently wrote in my January studio newsletter about it. Winter light is clear and bright one minute and soft and calm the next, I relish these days of quiet studio time. —Deborah T. Colter
  • The images of barns and stone walls continue to be part of the subject matter in my work. I am trying my hand at some land/seascapes. The spectacular sunsets this winter are getting my attention. —Wendy Weldon
  • I’m traveling a lot off-Island for research, mainly to Texas. It mostly inspires me to come back to the Island again. —Tony Horwitz
  • If I go off-Island, usually I’m going to my hometown in central Massachusetts. I miss big trees and mountains. —Danielle Mulcahy
  • I’m often inspired by current political/social issues. —Harry Seymour
  • A trip to New York was very energizing. Frank Stella at the New Whitney Museum in the meatpacking district, Picasso’s sculptures at MOMA, and early Jackson Pollock at MOMA. All artists looking for a new turn and twist for their art. —Fan Ogilve
  • I love being by the water; that is where I find my greatest inspiration. Being on the Vineyard keeps my juices up. There are so many things that capture my attention for inspiration to paint. That is why most of my painting are in the category of “in and by the sea.”  —Bettie Eubanks

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