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10 Artists Share Their Creative Process

ByLaure Lansonneur
10 Artists Share Their Creative Process

Drifting Towards Ecstasy - Andy Yang

An artist's creative process is one of the most intriguing aspects behind an artwork, as each artist has their own unique way of approaching their art practice. However, where does creativity come from? Whether it's sculpting, drawing, or painting, their creative process can either come spontaneously or can be prepared through initial sketches and drafts. Creativity is subjective, deeply personal, and sometimes difficult to be captured on a consistent basis. Many of them keep their mind artistically stimulated by taking walks, going to museums, or reading! 

In this article, The Artling looks at 10 artists breaking down their creative process, and sharing what inspires them!

Daniel O'Toole

Daniel O'Toole is an Australian artist, based in Melbourne. He is inspired by the 'Light and space' movement of the 1960s (Los Angeles), and his work is positioned in the post-digital context of contemporary Australia.

"I am drawn to immersive works that explore the relationship between sight and sound, video works that examine synaesthesia and natural phenomena, large scale paintings that feel all consuming yet subtle. Films, books, music, poetry, nature, art, dance, light, colour, smells, tastes, life." 

He describes his creative process as working with a range of media, to understand what personal truth is written in code regardless of the materials being employed.

"The relationship between painting and video has become and area of interest and I enjoy using film as a method for image creation. Video works are the source material for paintings which are often framed behind a frosted screen."


Joris Graaf

In his abstract digital photo-art, self-taught visual artist Joris Graaf (The Hague, 1980) seeks to create tension by forming a synthesis of opposites: noise and melody, growth and decay. His work is inspired by contemporary abstract painting. He is fascinated by the emotive power of shape and color.

"I typically make multiple-exposed photographs of scenes that I either find or create myself with all kinds of materials, including paint. I then process these images in a software package called Lightroom."

Joris uses his camera as an instrument to capture textures and structures, either from the world around him or from assemblages of paint and other materials that he makes specifically for this purpose. These are the raw ingredients that he uses to compose his work in the digital realm.

"Purely driven by emotion, my work is not intended to convey any messages or stories. With my images, I intend to create an atmosphere and to convey the feelings and emotions to the viewer that I felt at the time of making them."

Recurring stylistic elements are the use of an altered, minimal colour palette and an interplay of order and chaos, of spontaneity and restraint.

Sumali Piyatissa

Sumali Piyatissa is an artist based in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Sumali is a self-taught, active artist who develops her own style, composing her own artistic identity, and creating unique works of art. She enjoys experimenting with vibrant color palettes and different media. Her works range from classic oil paints to alcoholic inks and epoxy resins. 

"Color blending and playing with different color palettes would be my main style. Depending on my mood I would use very vibrant hues or subdued hues. I use a lot of gold leaf and the gold dust. It gives such a rich finish to the painting and somehow brightens it up. Each painting is different and I layer it with texture and paints. I use the palette knife to create and define the painting. Which is also one of my favorite tools to use along with the fan brush."

Her all-time favorite artist is Van Gogh; She also likes Monet's style and Klimt's use of color.

"There are many more talented artists that I follow online for inspiration as well. There’s so much of talent out there and so much that you can learn."

Nadim Kurani

Lebanese American artist Nadim Kurani was born in 1965 and spent his youth in Beirut, Lebanon. He lived through the Lebanese civil war – a blunt period of balancing survival with creativity. His early years were absorbed by collecting rocks and fossils, and re-drawing cereal box graphics. 

"I see and bring value to the most basic and mundane objects."

He is inspired by commercial products, pop culture, brutalist architecture, modernism, minimalism, and mother nature's paraphernalia.

"Three words that describe my work: Brutal, balanced, proportional"


Mime, is a French artist living in Paris. After studying art market design and contemporary art, he decided to try his hand at collage.  Mime draws his resources from his travels and his numerous visits to second-hand libraries. He browses, sources, skims, cuts, clips, trims, hides and glues visages and busts from all time periods, all eras.

"I cut subjects from second hand old book i find during my travels. I mix them with textures/real materials, looking to respect proportion, and then i include my blue signature at the end. This blue is my signature and the witness of the scene that i transcribe on the paper. All of these collages are handmade unique pieces with no computer during the production process. However, I remain open to use the computer depending on my upcoming projects."

The most important tool when creating his work is to take care of proportions and to make colors and textures fit together.

Heidi Lanino

Heidi Lanino is a graduate of Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York. Lanino studied drawing, painting, sculpture, and printmaking. She frequently exhibits in the United States, and abroad.

"My pieces express an emotion, state of mind, or a moment past by infusing line, shape and figure to convey a story, a piece; with a beginning, a middle, and an end. I capture moments of my life, or elements from historical paintings that resonate with our times and help inform our future. It’s this emotional resonance that I draw upon in my work."

She first begins with charcoal, on paper or canvas; making marks, erasing, beginning again, and leaving marks behind. She is drawn to beauty in art, and how beauty is found in art.

"My life experiences, my interactions, passions, interests, reflection, all manifest in my artwork and change over time. My work has always been about being a woman and how I feel being in that space, my personal response; reevaluating and revoking memories is what inspires me."

Ewelina Skowronska

Ewelina Skowronska is a Visual artist (b. 1980 in Poland) and currently lives and works in Tokyo. The female body is at the forefront of Ewelina’s prints and ceramic sculptures. She moves away from showing it as a finite whole, instead of expressing it through a sense of space and fluidity, producing a distinctive vision of feminine physicality.

"My work is on the edge of figuration and abstraction. I use printmaking as my main medium. Printmaking has a long history and tradition, and, as a medium which is not very immediate and which has quite a lot of limitations, it is very often placed in a different category than, for example, fine art. That is why it is very interesting for me to use traditional mediums, such as etching or woodcut, while working on my subject matter. I am interested in pushing the boundaries of this medium."

Through the exploration of the fundamentals of color, form, lines, and negative space, she focuses on ephemeral and unspoken aspects, using a combination of different printing techniques to produce a unique and powerful contrast. By exploring the interplay between nudity and carnality, she creates images on the edge of the figurative and abstract.

Andy Yang

Andy Yang (b. 1973, Malaysia) is a visual artist based in Singapore. Andy is known for his abstract visual & sound experimentations. After the first few initial figurative investigations, Yang gradually moved to the abstract plane. He felt that this was the most fertile ground for his artistic research, essentially because of the freedom afforded to him in exploring colours and forms. He shared his creative process with us: 

"Most of the time I would pick up an idea or topic from the collection from my sketchbook. Rough ideas that I have recorded throughout the years waiting for me to work on them. I will work on them for a while and see if they are worth pursuing before I dedicate more time to develop them."

His most important tool when creating his artwork is his pencil, portable watercolour kit and sketchbook to record his ideas on the go.

Lali Torma

Lali Torma is a German artist based in Berlin. She is inspired by nature, surfaces, patterns and light movement. Once her decisions about color and starting point are taken, Lali works by staying in the moment, thus keeping connected to each element and step of the process.

"I work with a large nib calligraphic pen that, after thousands of lines, has now become an extension of my body. It is a meditative state reinforced by the repetitive movement, a state of simple spontaneous flow where I vanish and let bigger forces play."

Some artists that have influenced her works are: Yayoi Kusama, Eva Hesse, Agnes Martin, Sol le Witt , Gerhard Richter, Jason Pollock, and Mark Rothko.

YongHo Park

YongHo Park is a South-Korean metal artist. He seeks the harmony of metal and painting and tries to balance both mediums. For him, metal is such a suitable material to express his thoughts and sensibilities - he always tries to reflect his inspiration into various metallic materials.

"I apply the metalwork to the painting. So every artwork essentially includes metal as the main material and it's combined with the textured and colored wood panel. Depending on the subject, I choose the most appropriate one out of various kinds of metals (steel, stainless steel, aluminum). Unique three-dimensional effects came from the harmony of metal and other materials such as wood, plaster."

For YongHo, the most important tool when creating his work is metal wire - to draw lines and make images. Bending technique and welding machine is necessary.


The creative process is different for every artist, as is evident from what these artists have shared. They each have their own unique ways of expressing creativity through a certain medium - whether it's metal, calligraphy, paint, or printmaking, the source of inspiration is a big part of the artistic process!

The Artling has a wide selection of artists from around the world with new artworks added to the site daily, click here to find out more!

Any views or opinions in the post are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the company or contributors.

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