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My sources of inspiration

My Sources of Inspiration

My Sources of Inspiration


A source of inspiration is a stimulus for the creative muscle in the brain.

When observed, enjoyed, listened to, provoked by, it sparks a corner of an idea.

Not necessarily because it hits the right angle, but because it presented an element that could take part in another act, a different perspective, a different composition, or a subjective story.

It is a pure and human phenomenon taking place when we take two different pieces from two different puzzles, and put them together in our own.

In this piece I will share where my pieces come from, what inspired me, and how they take part in my creative process.

My sources of inspiration do not merely influence the visuals of my work, but also the ideas beneath them.


Illustration of H.C. Andersen's fairy tales

A Dufex Print by Janet and Anne Grahame Johnstone


As mentioned in my biography, the mahogany framed Dufex print of the fairy tales by HC Andersen that stood by my bed when I was 4, gave me a sensation I chase to this day.

When I looked at it, I sensed wonder and fear simultaneously while exploring the fantastical creatures scattered all over the illustration.

A Dufex Print had a light-reflecting characteristic, so it gave a sense of movement when I moved my head on my big, nightly expedition, unsupervised by my parents.

I always try to awaken this exact sensation when I make art.

But there are also other sources of inspiration that aren’t so fantastical.


Illustration of H.C. Andersen's fairy tales

A Dufex Print by Janet and Anne Grahame Johnstone

Ray Dalio

Former Hedge-fund Manager of Bridgewater Associates

Ray Dalio

Former Hedge-fund Manager of Bridgewater Associates


Ray Dalio is the former hedge-fund manager of Bridgewater Associates, and puts forth ideas that continue to inspire and challenge me.

He has written down his principles for a succesful life, and principles for running a succesful company.

In both life and work, he advocates for radical truthfulness and radical transparency.

Following those two principles continue to challenge me, and has caused me much pain — but useful pain.

It has also spared me from pain, because the guidance had me choose what was right and truthful, instead of the opposite.

Sometimes my inner voice is his voice, because I can be overly submerged in his point of view.

“What would Ray Dalio do in this situation?” — is a phrase I get in difficult situations regarding life and business.

A simple but appreciated principle of his is: have clear goals.

It has really changed my focus and daily life, mostly not allowing me to make art, because I had to focus on my website.


Lars Tvede

Investor


Lars Tvede is an investor, hedge-fund manager, author, and serial entrepreneur.

His profession and life reminds me of Ray’s, but the reason I am inspired by him is different.

He holds an optimistic view of the future.

It allows him to act in a way, where the future is promising.

It allows him to look for opportunities more than he looks at obstacles, which is probably important when you’re investing.

But he also put forth an idea about the decentralization of power, which inspired the composition of ‘Decentralization’ made in 2019.

His danish heritage is also a reason for my fondness of him — knowing the danish culture, it hits closer to home to see one succeed as he has, when he originates from a culture I have partly grown up and lived in.

But if I may, I will also mention some people who have had a visual impact on my creative endeavors.


Lars Tvede

Investor

Don Rosa

Donald Duck Illustrator

Don Rosa

Donald Duck Illustrator


Don Rosa is probably the one I idolize the most of all people.

He is a legendary comic book writer and illustrator of the Donald Duck realm.

I have a collection of all his work, taking at least 4 days to read all the way through, if you read 12 hours or more each day.

He has mostly focused on the life of Scrooge McDuck, where his stories of Scrooge McDuck’s life is the most beloved of all Donald Duck fanatics.

His collection was the very first thing I bought when I earned my first paycheck on the fishing ship.

He and his work has not only entertained me more than anything, but also inspired me to strive for half the amount of detail and storytelling as his work.

Many of his stories include and take place during historical events and around historical people — if you enjoy that about Forrest Gump, you’re going to have a blast reading Don Rosa’s work.

His speech bubbles are bigger than any illustrators, and his research and intricacy is unparalleled.

He says that his work is not meant for children, and that is evident in his sense of humor.
My favorite ‘scene’ in his comics was when Scrooge McDuck just arrived in the States where his fabled drunk sailor uncle told young Scrooge McDuck a tall tale about how much it rained one day:

“It rained so much that I think I saw salmon swimming around!”.


The ‘think’ part was one of the bits in his writing that made me laugh, as much as a comic strip can make you laugh.


Pablo Amaringo

Painter


Another visual inspiration with a more direct connotation to my work is Pablo Amaringo, THE Ayahuasca painter from Peru.

I hold the same admiration for him as Don Rosa, but Pablo’s work has more direct visual implications to my own.

What inspires me with him is his compositions, color schemes, and the many variations of patterns.

I don’t really care whether or not he took a mind enhancing brew, nor do I care whether or not he was inspired by the visuals and experiences of his psychedelic visions.

To me, it doesn’t make a difference — all of my sober dreams are also very peculiar; last night I dreamt a catfish tried to kill me with a knife — to its dismay, I was a slippery fish too in my dream.


Pablo Amaringo

Painter

Carl G. Jung

Psychoanalyst

Carl G. Jung

Psychoanalyst


Talking about dreams, Carl Jung is one I have to mention on here.

I was mostly inspired by his autobiography where he recalled dreams, memories and reflected upon them.

It was just a profound experience to dive into the depth of his psyche while him being aware of the presentation and using his profession for the reflection of his experiences.

I think his way of thinking inspires me before any idea begins taking root, if that makes any sense.

I was touched by how close and relatable someone could get to the human experience of life.

He, his experience, and his ideas somehow roams around the same place in my mind, soul, being (whatever you want to call it) as that Dufex Illustration that sat by my bed when I was 4 years old.


To round it off, I would also like to mention artists like Drake, Smokey Robinson, and Jay-Z as individuals who inspire me, each contributing to the puzzle of Paalu.
Their influence will have a separate page for itself regarding the music I listen to when I create my craft.

They all got something just right — navigating their realities successfully and inspiringly.

And I do not know why these exact individuals had to inspire me more than others, they just hit a nerve that no others had.


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