Favourite Modern Artists & Illustrators // A Study of my Inspirations


Today I would like to share a small study of the vast world of my inspirations.

Of course there are endless sources to my overflowing fountain of ideas, but in this post I will be focussing on a few of my favourite modern artists and illustrators. Look out for further posts sharing all the other people and things that inspire me soon.

I hope you enjoy this post and possibly find someone new to inspire your own creative work! All artist names are below their work, with a hyperlink to their online portfolio.

Brett Manning

I follow Brett on Instagram, where she shares her work and glimpses of life as an artist. I love her subject matter – usually women, fantasy, magic and science-fiction – along with her small detailed line work and brush strokes.

And Smile Studio

Viktorija is another artist I found through Instagram. I love how she doesn’t always use outlines, and especially recently has been using paint more freely and exploring bright, fun colour palettes.

Yelena Brykenskova

I am captivated by every single piece created by Yelena. Her work always depicts simple, everyday scenes with incredible details, making small things suddenly special and precious. I also enjoy her muted colour choices.

Laura Callaghan

I feel like Laura’s work is quite similar to Yelena’s, just with the volume turned up! Her work oozes attitude from every corner, and she is extremely bold and brave; just looking at her work makes me feel a little more confident.

Fran Meneses

Fran is the queen of cute everyday doodles and observations, and even has her own line of travel-journal zines, full of amazing illustrations. Plus she has a super cool YouTube channel full of advice for artists!

Jacquelin Deleon

Jacquelin also has a YouTube channel, where you can watch her create some amazing paintings. I love the combination of watercolour, coloured pencils and pens used to make her awesome portraits. She also works with digital art and produces graphic novels.

Karen O’Brien

Karen’s work is very different to the other artists mentioned above, but I am a HUGE fan of collage and mixed-media! I bought her book ‘Imaginary Characters’ which is stunning, just like her art. The physical and metaphorical layers built up in rich collages like Karen’s are so captivating to me, I could look at work like this for hours!

So, as a small analysis, from looking at these examples, it seems that I am drawn to work that features: women, everyday scenes mixed with magic and fantasy, watercolour and layers. I better go and make some work that uses all those things then!

There are so many more artists I could list here, but to see a few extra examples of work I admire go to my ‘Art’ board on Pinterest. I add new inspiration fuel all the time, plus I will be adding pins of my own work soon!

Who inspires you? Why do you love their work? Where else do you get your ideas? I’d love to hear your creative stories; let me know down in the comments or over on social media.

If you like, why not come back this Wednesday when I will have a new YouTube video to show you. Find my latest one below and have a wonderful beginning to a fresh new week, I hope your dreams come true!


Peace and love

Rachel x

(note: the header/feature image is my own work)


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