Books/Stories that inspire you

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  05 May 2005
Books/Stories that inspire you

Hey all,

I think that a lot of the threads on here are wonderful, asking what paintings, movies, artists, and picture books inspire you to paint/render/draw. But none of them deal with books filled with stories. So I am posing the question, what books have you read that the stories in them left you so inspired that you had to create art as soon as possible?

And I would appreciate if you answered this too: did the book you read inspire a story of your own that you had to paint, or did you feel the need to illustrate the book yourself?

Thanks a bunch!


"The Elvenbane" by Mercedes Lackey and Andre Norton
"The Outstretched Shadow" by Mercedes Lackey and [insert unknown author later]
"Mermaid Tales from Around the World" by various storytellers
  05 May 2005
The Divine Comedy by Dante. Everybody in the world should read it.

I really mean this. It is the most amazing piece of poetry in the world.

....I'm going to read it again tonight....
  05 May 2005
"Sexing the Cherry" by Jeanette Winterson left a great impression on me.
"China Men" and "The Woman Warrior" by Maxine Hong Kingston as well.
"the Master and Margarita" by Bulgakov - -
"Einstein's Dreams" by Lightman? not sure if that last name is correct.
goodness how could I leave out Camus - everything that I've read by Camus.

Gosh there are hundreds of others too. . .
sketch blog

Last edited by stepington : 05 May 2005 at 08:14 AM. Reason: added Camus
  05 May 2005
Kabuki (comics) by david Mack Inspiring stuff
Its Alive (spectacular)

  05 May 2005
"Stranger in a Strange Land" by Robert Heinlein
"Harry Potter" -Before the movie really got to it >.>
"The Giver" by Lois Lowry

I dig childrens' fantasy obviously lol

I am in the process of illustrating a story of my own too ^^
  05 May 2005
Originally Posted by ThePatches: "Harry Potter"

Yeah, I recently picked up those books again, I hadn't read them in forever because of the movies and Harry's attitude in the fifth book, but I can't put them down now.

Originally Posted by ThePatches: I am in the process of illustrating a story of my own too ^^

Sweet! I love making up stories, and then planning illustrations to go along with them. Good luck with that

To Everyone else: Great suggestions!
  05 May 2005
HArry Potter definately has some inspirating points for me, It triggers my imagination

Also the Books of Stravaganza trigger my imagination but I'm not sure if these books are also for sale in other countries besides Holland (where I come from) Its a book about time traveling to another world besides this world. The story plays partly in England this time and partly in Itlay around 1600... but the only difference is... In our world Romus won in Italy (Romus and Remus) Thats why the capital of Italy is called Rome... But in the book Remus won... Therefor everything is slightly different. For Example, One of the books plays in our Venetie (I belive it is Venice in English?) But now Venice is famous for its gold... In the book its not gold, but silver... These kind of things...

It triggers my imagination because places and people are described very detailed. You form a wonderful image of them and that makes me want to design them (although I'm not able to yet :P)

And last but not Least... Darren Shan... that's also very inspiring (its about vampires )

Greetz Maya

Last edited by Mayatjuh : 05 May 2005 at 07:53 AM.
  05 May 2005
Not inspiration, just a really good book

I'm reading this quite an interesting book, The Crusades by Robert Payne. There are many fascinating anecdotes, but one got me thinking about the origins of the Grim Reaper: the king of the Tafurs.

Wikipedia says that the Tafurs were the remnants of the People's Crusade (before the First Crusade in 1095-1099), but in the book they are described as a sort of a wave of half-naked wildmen who e.g. ate dead Turks when the army ran low on supplies. They fought in a blood-frenzy and despised the knights for wearing armour, wielding actual weapons and eating food fit for human consumption. All round a charming rabble of fascinating characters.

So, they had a king, a Norman knight who had made a vow of poverty: he clad himself in sackcloth and wielded a scythe. Get the picture? I bet that with the starving and the hard work, he was probably really thin too.
  05 May 2005
I'm inspired books all the time, but these are books that I sat down and drew a picture of:

"Being a Green Mother" (book 5 of the Incarnations of Immortality) by Piers Anthony
I just had to draw the wedding of Satan and Mother Nature.

"Maximum Bob" by Elmore Leonard
A lecherous old judge propositioning the young defense attorney. An alligator eating the judge's poodle. Priceless.

"Hard Boiled Wonderland & the End of the World" by Haruk Murakami
I love that his books have realistic characters in very surreal situations. I drew some of the beasties that lived in the main character's mind.

"Winnie the Pooh" by A.A. Milne
I did a watercolor of Winnie the Pooh learning to hop like Tigger. It became a birthday gift for my sister. An all time favorite book, and I love that it's a story within a story.

I can't remember a time that I read a book then drew a picture of something else. Closest I can think of is a bio of an artist whose POV made me see things differently:

"Chuck Amuck" by Chuck Jones
He drew inspiration from crummy bosses, stray cats and Mark Twain novels.
"Dream big. Small dreams ain't got no suction." -S. Paige

  05 May 2005

japanese comic" dragon balls" and lots of sf movies such as "star wars""aliens"
  05 May 2005
irrelevant and unnecessary fluff


There's so much to that book but I loved the begining when they turned off the sound to the waterfall in the tunnels.
sketch blog
  05 May 2005
Originally Posted by stepington: OH YEAH! Hardboiled WONDERLAND!!

There's so much to that book but I loved the begining when they turned off the sound to the waterfall in the tunnels.

Heh, I had forgotten about that. I think the woman leading him through the caves was deaf, but he understood everything she thought. I've read five or six of his books and there's always the sense that the main character is just like me and he's walking through a dream trying to piece together the meaning of his life.

Ever read Wild Sheep Chase? There's somebody here on CGTalk with that nickname.
"Dream big. Small dreams ain't got no suction." -S. Paige

  05 May 2005
No. My girlfriend is the one who's the BIG murakami fan around here - she keeps telling me to read it.
sketch blog
  05 May 2005
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