We asked some of the most inspiring folks we know to tell us what they are inspired by.

Nihaarika Negi | Film & Theatre Maker I Co-Founder Autotelic Pictures

I am inspired by a desire to make space for the lost mythologies of our inner lives. By a need to excavate at the site of our bodies and reclaim the ancestry of our cultures. I am inspired by the possibility of complete and utter failure. By the practice of sitting with the things that make us uncomfortable. But mostly, as a foreigner and a woman of color, I am inspired by a desire to take the systemic injustices that mark our skins like papercuts and use them to craft contemporary folktales that capture our imaginative potential for healing and change. Read more>>

Nigo Bands | Recording Artist

I tend to find myself inspired by my surroundings, the people around me, movies, a ton of things really. I feel like you can draw inspiration from just about anything, it just really depends on the person looking to be inspired. For example something as tiny as a line in a movie may end up inspiring me to write a song or a whole album even. Or how the sky may look on a particular night. You know, stuff like that. Read more>>

Madison Shamoun | Actor

People for sure. People inspire me the most. Read more>>

LaKeisha McGee | Author, Entrepreneur, Healer, Therapist, Life Coach, Educator, Breast Cancer Advocate & SURVIVOR!

I’m inspired by two things 1. Developing a platform that creates generational wealth for my family which consists of financial freedom, spiritual healing, solid mental health, and physical wellness. 2. Helping those that are plagued by social and economic injustices to heal and succeed. Read more>>

Serena Hope Sun | Millennial Wonder Woman | Social Entrepreneur, Advocate, Serial Creative

Strong women who can also be caring and vulnerable, and who have multiple things going on in their lives. These can be CEOs who also play an active role in their family, entrepreneurs who are not just all about money, creative artists who make a difference in society outside of just self indulgence. I may not have one particular role model in my life, but these are the type of women that I look up to, and the type of person I myself aspire to be. Read more>>

Rosalba Mann | R&D Manager & Paleta Queen

La Michoacana are inspired by Mexican traditions and recipes from artisan paleterias across Mexico. La Michoacana wants to share the flavors of Mexico and the paleteria experience in each of our paletas. That’s why our ice cream bars and frozen fruit bars are so indulging and refreshing because we keep them authentic with real fruit, dairy, and inclusions. Read more>>

Anayaa | Singer/Songwriter

I’m inspired by soooo much. Music helps me express alot of whats going on around me and also in my personal life. I”m inspired by artist like Brandy, Anita Baker, Whitney Houston, Jazmine Sullivan, Kim Burrell, Beyonce & sooo many other great artist. I’m inspired by truth and thats what i try to make my music about. Read more>>

Andrea Hamilton | Songwriter/Composer

I’m inspired by stories of overcoming. My songwriting often reflects these themes of bravery in the midst of discouragement, or persevering and trying again when life deals you something difficult. I’m inspired to write when I see someone dig deep and do the right thing when it’s hard – or when I personally have to double down on my perseverance and grit. This was true even before I had a health crises, but I think living through two years of fighting for my life gave me even more empathy, as well as admiration, for people who have to fight harder in life. Read more>>

Benjamin Hong | Visual Development Artist

Personally, a lot of my inspiration comes from appreciating and finding ways to enjoy any medium that comes from emotion, from photography to food, music or man made objects as well as nature. Thinking about the design choices being made from the respective artists constantly inspire me about how people problem solve aside from just visual. Learning about their intentions and emotional drives always give me new ways to experiment with my craft. Like for example, thinking about how the yellow-orange from an egg can match very nice with the purple red lighting from a music video. Read more>>

Ricky Alvidrez | Kinesiology Student and Physical Trainer

My Mother will foremost be my biggest inspiration. The amount of integrity she upholds daily is inspiring to me. Through her faith and determination, Even though she was been doubted, she perseveres. I’ve always regarded that as awe inspiring. She taught me to always have a sense of gratitude for what the day will bring. Thus, I’m inspired by the possibilities a day can contribute. Just having the ability to wake up, is something I am truly grateful for. Thus, the given opportunities that I have the potential of receiving inspires me. I am also inspired by the goals I have set for myself. My goal is to become an adaptive fitness trainer, and sharing my story of recovery. I hope to perpetuate inspiration for those who are in desolation. I enjoy reflecting on this mission statement. In addition, progress forward day by day. It instills purpose, inspiration, and humility. Read more>>

Cherokee Bux | Knife Designer & Artist

As an knife designer, I am inspired by the freedom of being creative, all the while combining the original vintage styles of yesteryear, to come up with a work of art, I can call my own. As a Business Man, my inspiration is success! Which in my case means too deliver a High Quality of Product , and Customer Service, that will hopefully continue to keep our customers happily satisfied, and returning for years to come. Read more>>

Darrel Dunn | Movement Composer

I’m inspired by the idea and truth that “you only get one of these.. life.” Without taking moment by moment, life is simply just passing us by. That is why we must create and be present in the very minute moments. In one hundred years most of us will have passed on, so will our “perspectives” and aspirations. This inspires me to be truthful at will with nothing left to chance. Tomorrow is not promised. “Right now is.. today.” Read more>>

Tracey Laguerre | Animation Producer

I’m inspired by the all the women who I see in varies stages of life making beautiful fulfilling lives as artist or working in the arts. It’s really beautiful to see entrepreneurship and creative comes together like that and it encourages me to. Read more>>

Lakesha Coleman | Inspiring Generational Wealth

My inspiration comes from my family. I have strong support starting with my husband. My husband has supported and encouraged me to keep going and striving to success even when the sales are down. He reminds that the reason why I do this is to create a legacy for our family and ensure that our family is setup to maintain generational wealth going forward. My kids are always supporting me. They are always willing to help me make the candles, make the labels, sample fragrances, ship the products and even help with selling the candles at local farmer’s market and swapmeets. It brings a level of satisfaction and confidence when they google candles and see that my website is there and their faces light up with joy knowing that I am putting everything I have into this business to ensure that it is successful for them. Read more>>

Jowal Quitl | Photographer and Videographer

Film has always been the main source of inspiration for me, it’s what first sparked my curiosity in creating images. The movies I saw, especially those in my formative years, have deeply resonated and the influence can be seen in my work and how I approach shooting. The use of color, composition, subject, framing etc… in film is what guided me when I first started doing photography. When I look at my early landscape and city photos, I can see how a film like Collateral, directed by Michael Mann, had in impact on my work. Even now, the films of Seijun Suzuki, Michel Gondry and Nicolas Winding Refn are inspiring me to evolve and push myself creatively. Read more>>

Rodney (Famousz) Sanni-Gilkey | Producer, Artist, Writer, Businessman, Entrepreneur, Investor.

I’m inspired by the thought of legacy. Just thinking about legacy leaves me full of ambition and determination. Legacy lives on longer than i actually do. Legacy is what my great great grandchildren and nieces & nephews will have to cherish. The type of legacy I leave behind may spark inspiration in my family & Friends. Read more>>

Jenn Salinas | C0-Founder of Mosaic PR

I’m inspired by the people around me. Our clients have a dream and a gift. It is honestly, my pleasure to promote their gift, and watch their success. It’s very exciting to take this journey with people who trust us. Read more>>

Tanya White | Artistic Director, Santa Monica Repertory Theater

I find where we are right now, as a nation, inspiring. There are a lot of tough conversations around equality and accountability that people are having. There’s an emotional and value-driven rigor of personal and national examination happening that art facilitates and supports. I am writing with more frequency and abandon, with less censorship. The expression ‘the personal is political’ is really resonating, especially in the poetry I’m writing right now. Read more>>

Manny Zaldivar | Actor, Writer, Director, Filmmaker

Possibility. Take a look at your physical surroundings wherever you’re reading this. Everything you see did not once exist. Everything you see started out as a nugget of an idea until someone was bold enough to bring it into existence. The perspective that something as simple and as intangible as the concept of an idea can literally shape the world around us tells me that the possibilities are endless. If something seems impossible, it’s not. We just don’t have the proper information to understand it. That inspires me to create everything I do and I don’t know how to not get excited about that. Read more>>

Braeden Dragon | Singer/Rapper/Producer

I am inspired by anyone who is willing to push and achieve the unthinkable. I’m inspired by those who aren’t worried to express themselves artistically. I’m meeting more and more creatives everyday and the collective grind that everyone possesses fuels the already burning passion I have. Read more>>

Gloria Ross | Artist

In one word, nature. From the plant and animal world to the geometry of lines, shapes and angles, I find inspiration for art all around me. My thoughts about color, form, and movement all have the common thread of nature. When I paint, I am drawn to images or scenes that are inviting to me and through my art I try to bring my audience there. The art I appreciate most always transports me to a different place and time. A good artist can evoke a memory or a feeling as much as a familiar aroma can. My own senses come alive at the touch of a luxurious fabric or the sight of animals at play. I love the scent of fresh paint and just hewn wood and the sound of rushing water or waves crashing. This is where inspiration lives for me. Nature has never let me down and I look forward to all the experiences ahead of me. Read more>>

Ghislain Grellier | Ballet Teacher, Choreographer & Producer

Paintings, musics, architectures are my inspirations. I do practice different art forms around a theme that would help me create my choreographies. When I created the work Constellation, it actually started with a painting I made inspired by the constellations and the work of the artist Caroline Chariot-Dayez who creates oil paintings about the fold of fabrics. On my painting I work with the texture of paper to create a fabric texture. It is like a piece of fabric floating in the air and frozen on a canvas. In my choreographic work I made alive those texture by playing with the movement of the fabric. I believe it is an example of how other art practice help me create dance. Since my young age, I had the chance to follow a musical education, mostly playing piano, listening to classical music and studying it. These knowledges are great supports to create dance. Read more>>

Kristin Teig | Food, Travel + Lifestyle Photographer

I pivoted in college from plans to study journalism to fine art, eventually working on a post-baccalaureate certificate in painting in Italy. While I was there over the holidays, my photography instructor invited me to join his family for a meal. For hours I watched as plates of food were shared along with long conversation, and I always think of this as the moment I knew I wanted to photograph food, and also document food culture. I’m most inspired by venturing outside of the familiar, and the people I’ve met while traveling who I may never see again but have left an indelible mark. Prior to the pandemic I worked with my friend, author Jody Eddy, photographing the food in monasteries and temples around the world for her upcoming cookbook. The generosity of people and excitement to share their stories was constant, with food as the unifier. For Chef Hooni Kim’s cookbook, we traversed South Korea, visiting families and places that sparked memories from his childhood. Read more>>

Perry Janes | Writer

This year, I’m inspired by unabashed expressions of imagination; by artists, thinkers, and people who freely and wildly think outside of themselves. I reflect often on how, in our adult lives, we’re told to be practical, to stay grounded, to “stick to what we know.” I’m not saying those aren’t virtues worth considering, but all too often they’re placed in binary opposition to our imaginative lives–as though practicing one sacrifices the other. But isn’t it our ability to imagine that facilitates our ability to change? To envision new futures for ourselves and the world? To practice empathy? Today, I’m inspired by people who assert that not every action or creation needs to be boiled down to its utility; who are vulnerable enough to move outside their own certainties and explore the weird, the wondrous, the unknown and unfamiliar. Read more>>

Payton Murillo | Actor, Dancer, Choreographer, Stunt Fighter, Teacher with Theater of Hearts

I am inspired by the strange and unusual, with a side of wow factor. The kind that sends electrical impulses up the brain-stem into the neocortex and thalamus, sparking the match of imagination, and blurring the lines of reality and fantasy. My parthenon of inspiration comes from a wide variety artists, such as, Tim Burton, Jack Nicholson, Michael Keaton, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Margot Robbie, Wade Robson, Galen Hooks, Lady Gaga, Marlon Brando, Jose Limon, Alvin Alley and countless others. These timeless inspirations consistently teaching me and feed me knowledge with their artistry to lift me from my couch, or my seat in the stadium or theater to building a bridge, extending into their fantasy-world that is so real to them, that it becomes, my own reality. All of these artist are standouts and rebels that pushed artistic limits as well as changed the status quo. Read more>>

Mateo Barragán | Audio Engineer/ Producer

Music. I am very passionate about music and I would say it is the main source of inspiration for me. My love for music is the reason I decided to move to LA in the first place and I really think that it was a life changing and the decision I have have made for my career. I am an audio engineer/ producer and I work at a recording studio, which has allowed me to work with many great artists and musicians. Working with people that is very talented but also very passionate about making music really inspires me and pushes me to want to become better and better at my craft so that I can make them sound the best as possible. Read more>>

Mitchell Fairchild | DJ and Producer (SPEKTER, Quiet Mitch)

I really got into house music and DJs during middle school when I first discovered Daft Punk and Deadmau5. Since then, I’ve really gotten into more deep house and tech house music, which is what SPEKTER is really based around. Some of my current inspirations are Gorgon City, John Summit, Noizu, CID, and Lee Foss to name a few. Read more>>

Nick Isham | Singer Songwriter / Acoustic-Pop Artist

I find that inspiration is always around. I am/ can be inspired really by anything and everything around me – from other performing artists and writers, to my family and friends; conversations I have, to personal experiences; movies/ TV shows I watch, to things I see walking down the street. It’s just a matter of making sure I keep my eyes and ears open and taking it in. Read more>>

Fabiola Lima Medina | Fine Artist

Most of my inspiration comes from emotions. I consider myself a very emotional person although I’m the kind of the person that doesn’t show it much, and that’s the main reason why I base my art off of my own feelings, it’s a really good way for me to reflect on them and art helps me go through my ups and downs; kind of like my best friend. Read more>>

Brittany Crawford | Licensed Cosmetologist and Salon Owner

Being able to make women feel good through my hands. Turning a bad day around by giving a client a new hair cut and style. Read more>>

Aja Whitten: Pan Afrakan Holistic Wellness Guide

In-spiration The experience of breath I invite myself to Be it
To breath deeply of my own essence Bring awareness of my heart
Beating in Time With the flux Of breath Deeeeep inhale As I expand in inspiration Hold on to this fullness Allow the pause to fill my cup
Until it feels as if my chest will explode With Inspiration
And as I surrender my breath to This moment My exhale releases the fear of ex-piration Annihilation Of the space created betweenthe world around me Limitless. Read more>>

Tomer Peretz | Artist

What’s most inspiring to me, especially now is how people react to certain events that are happening around us. I feel moved by the contrast that there is going in life. Lately I woke up and saw how the system that we’ve been controlled by is so corrupt and that they put themselves a mask to be good and helpful to all the people. We are controlled by the higher power and we walk around like sheeps. I am inspired by showing the truth and what I’m seeing. The way I show this is through my art and my next upcoming show “Welcome to America”. Read more>>

Dimitri Dunn | Recording Artist & Actor

I’m inspired by other artists and the great music they make I also get inspired by nature just existing in a space with fresh and being in tune with myself really sets my mind at ease. Read more>>

Fatima Iqbal-Zubair | 2022 AD 64 State Assembly Candidate

What inspires me daily to keep putting in the work as I run again in the State Assembly race are the people in my community and all that they have been fighting for, for decades. I have lived in Carson for almost a decade, have worked in Watts as a public school teacher for several years, and mentor a phenomenal Robotics team I founded. Additionally, my five year old special needs son goes to public school in Carson as well. While housing was being built in the projects in Watts, a large sign in front of the grounds of the public school states that it is contaminated by lead- this simply would not happen in a more privileged neighborhood. Additionally, there are schools and areas in South LA that still don’t have clean water. Rates of respiratory diseases, cancer, police shootings and infant mortality rates are higher in our district, and life expectancy is lower. Read more>>

Dr. Linda Salvin | Metaphysical Clinician, Psychic Hearler

I am inspired by helping people reach goals and succeed in their own process. I love being a guide and opening doors to opportunity or eyes to possibility. For nearly 28 years, I have been assisting others spiritually and psychically to embrace challenges and obstacles on their path. Read more>>