**CONGRATULATIONS LESLIE DICKEN! You just won Kristen Painter's latest release ALL FIRED UP in eBook format. Please contact me to collect your prize at jaxcassidy @ gmail.com **


THE ART OF INSPIRATION

One thing Jax and I share is a love of great, interesting art, so it seemed a no brainer to me to blog about the topic of art as inspiration. Especially since my debut book, ALL FIRED UP, was solely inspired by a picture I found on Deviant Art called Mixed Ashes by Mahtaliel. If you haven’t been to Deviant Art, you’re really missing out. Some of the artists there are AMAZING!



The picture stayed with me so much that I returned over and over to look at it. Like most writers, the “what if” gene is strong and I started thinking…What if this guy were real? What if the Phoenix wasn’t a bird but a man? What if he had the power to change past mistakes? The questions kept coming and the story began to unfold like a scroll of possibilities.

And so, ALL FIRED UP was born. And Mahtaliel gave me permission to post the pic on my website as well so that readers can see what inspired the book. I even sent a copy of the pic to the cover artist who did my Samhain cover. I think you can see a little of it in there, don’t you?

What art has inspired you lately?

Mahtaliel’s Gallery: http://mahtaliel.deviantart.com/gallery/


ABOUT KRISTEN:

Kristen Painter is a former college English teacher, personal trainer, advertising exec, maitre d’, and runway model. When not building fantastical worlds, creating new characters or plotting herself out of a corner, she hangs out in the forum at Romancedivas.com, the award-winning site she co-founded with Jax Cassidy, blogs at www.kristenpainter.blogspot.com (except for Tuesday's when she's on deck at www.fictionistas.blogspot.com) or tweets at http://twitter.com/Kristen_Painter.

She’s represented by The Knight Agency.

Comments (63)

On September 3, 2009 at 7:50 AM , Kristen Painter said...

Thanks for having me! It's great to be here.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 8:29 AM , Roxanne St. Claire said...

Oooh, I love that painting. I just bought ALL FIRED UP (losing my ebook virginity, I might add) and can't wait to read it.

The "art" that inspires me most often is music - the story inside a country song, or the emotion of a ballad, or the sexiness of some rock 'n' roll. Not while writing (can't stand the distraction), but often I'll listen to music after I've written a scene, and the emotional hook I was looking for is right there in the music.

Great blog and congrats on the release!!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 8:30 AM , Jax Cassidy said...

Thanks for blogging! I am SO happy your book is out! It was really too long coming.... :)

 
On September 3, 2009 at 8:31 AM , Erica Ridley said...

Hi Kristen! Like you, I have a strong "what if" gene, so just about anything can inspire me... (AKA send me staring into space, no longer paying any attention to my surroundings. This is especially fun when someone's trying to have a conversation with me, but the only voices I'm hearing are in my head.)

I'll have to check out Deviant Art!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 8:36 AM , Inez Kelley said...

Don't you love the "what if" gene? I love the inspiration picture. Congrats on your release and good luck!!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 8:46 AM , Kristen Painter said...

Thanks for buying my book, Rocki!

Jax - I totally agree!

Erica - I think you'll get hooked on Deviant Art like me.

Inez - Thanks for stopping by!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 8:53 AM , Jean Mason said...

I love the idea of finding a picture or a painting and coming up with a story. I guess I have to start looking through mags with dead bodies or, better yet, ones with hunky heros and sexy heroines. Yah, that's it!!

I'm so excited for you!!!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 8:54 AM , Kristen Painter said...

Jean - If there are magazines with dead bodies in them, I don't want a subscription. lol

 
On September 3, 2009 at 8:56 AM , December said...

I know what you mean about the What If gene...

I actually find my inspiration from TV, which is weird becuase I don't really watch much. Usually its a particular character that strikes a chord with me, and my mind wanders, and that character morphs into something different, but the spark is still there.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:00 AM , Kristen Painter said...

December - I think TV can be a great tool for writers. I've had ideas spark off watching small snippets of shows.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:09 AM , Judy said...

Hi, Kristen! Interesting blog. Your book sounds wonderful. Congratulations! I'm so excited for you!!
I love all kinds of art. As a writer of children's stories as well as women's fiction, the art that has inspired me lately as been by Liz Conrad, a very talented children's book writer and illustrator who died recently of cancer. Her characters are round and fun and colorful. So once I finish revising my present adult book, I'll maybe be inspired to do something fun in the children's line.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:15 AM , Lara Santiago said...

Ah yes...the "what if" gene runs strong in me as well.

Infinite story possibilities lurk in the shadows of all the things I see and do. So many stories...so little time.

All Fired Up is an awesome book inspired by an awesome painting.
You know what that means, don't you? You're filled with awesomeness, too. :)

Congrats on your first release, chickie.
L

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:17 AM , Leslie Parrish said...

Kristen, I love that painting! It really is cool to hear how other writers are inspired to do what they do.

The original painting used in the movie The Picture of Dorian Gray hangs in the Chicago Art Institute and I stared at that thing (and another by the same artist) long and hard just trying to find the words to describe it.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:20 AM , Kristen Painter said...

Judy - It's amazing how another artist's work can inspire us!

Lara - I think you have the What If gene even worse than I do!

Leslie - I don't think I've ever seen that painting. I may have to look that up.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:24 AM , Bonnie Ferguson said...

Congrats on the release, Kristen! The what if meter can go off the charts in any number of ways, from looking at great artwork to remembering snippets from a dream. :)

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:30 AM , klara kline said...

Kristen, I love your inspirational art. The what ifs are wonderful to writers. Good luck and congrats.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:34 AM , Kristen Painter said...

Bonnie - Dreams are another great inspiration for me!

Klara - Thanks for stopping by!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:42 AM , Jeannie Lin said...

Wow, it's cool to see how the cover came about and, yes, I do see some hints in there. :)

Seems to be a recurring theme on my blog surfing today - the pictures that inspire us. It's wonderful how an author can see a picture like that and just be hooked and compelled to fill in the story.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:44 AM , Leigh Duncan said...

Kristen,

Congrats on the release of ALL FIRED UP, and yes, I do see a few similarities between that fantastic painting and your equally fantastic cover.

Little slivers of real life spark my creative fires.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:48 AM , Vicki said...

Congrats on the book release. :) I love the 'What if' gene. I've got three pictures above my desk that I've had for years, all done in sepia coloring. I would stare at them wondering who might have sat on the bench, or whose window might that have been. One day while working the scene from each of those pictures just kinda came to me and ATB was born.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:57 AM , Leslie Dicken said...

Oooh, I want to win a copy! ;-)

I love how your story grew out of one image. Art truly inspires other artists. I can definitely say I've seen visions of imagined landscapes and it's had my brain going. Who would live there? Etc.

Congrats on the new release. That cover model is HAWT!! :-)

 
On September 3, 2009 at 9:59 AM , Danielle Yockman said...

Oh you guys I won a an ARC of All Fired Up...it was such a great read! OMG...expect to have a serious Cinnabon craving after reading this. Honestly...I can't say enough about how good this book is! -Obviously I don't need to win another copy so skip me on the contest!-

 
On September 3, 2009 at 10:18 AM , Kristen Painter said...

Jeannie - I love these kind of little behind the scenes peeks!

Leigh - Thank you!

Vicki - I love that!

Leslie - Here's hoping you get lucky. Hah!

Danielle - Aw, thanks for the great review! I'm so glad you enjoyed it.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 10:18 AM , Louisa Edwards said...

I get inspired every time I get a new issue of Gourmet or Saveur! Those food photos make me want to get in the kitchen, for sure, but they also make me want to sit down and write.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 10:19 AM , Kristen Painter said...

Louisa - Rats, I thought you were going to say they inspired you to come to my house and cook. lol

 
On September 3, 2009 at 10:38 AM , RKCharron said...

Hi :)
The art of Michael Whelan always inspires me.
Also reading great writers inspires me to continue to write.
(I guess when I read a really really bad book and say to myself, "THIS was published? I write better than this!" is also inspiring to me).
:)
ALL FIRED UP sounds great and it is already on my ToBeRead list.
:)
I wish I had Kristen Painter as a college English teacher, that would have been extremely great!
All the best,
@RKCharron
xoxo

 
On September 3, 2009 at 10:41 AM , Kristen Painter said...

RK - Oh my gosh! Micheal Whelan rocks!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 10:45 AM , Carly Carson said...

I love using pictures to motivate me on characters. Yet another great thing about the internet is the exposure it gives us to so much wonderful art (though I hope the artists have a way to get compensated).

 
On September 3, 2009 at 10:59 AM , Chans said...

I love how one form of art can be an inspiration for someone else to create something with another form of art such as drawing can be an inspiration for writing a book!

Things that inspire me are music and photographs. The art of capturing something, an emotion for instance, inspires me to do the same, whether that's in my own (amateur) writing or something else doesn't matter. As long as art inspires others to do something or feel something; it's good art!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 11:02 AM , Laurie said...

Wow! Thanks for sharing Deviant Art with us - I just went and signed up because I'm a very visual writer and use pics all the time for inspiration and to keep me grounded in my wip. I *love* both the painting and your cover (very yummy!) I also am inspired by music and do what everyone likely does - make playlists for my characters so I can "hear" their essence whenever I get stuck. Congrats on your release, it sounds fabulous. :)

 
On September 3, 2009 at 11:24 AM , Kristen Painter said...

Carly - one of the nice things about Deviant Art is the site gives artists a chance to sell prints of their work.

Chans - I totally agree - if it inspires, it's good art.

Laurie - You're welcome! Glad to share it.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 11:29 AM , Nancy G said...

Book sounds great. I like hearing where inspiration comes from. Sometimes mine comes to me out of the blue-a group of words just sounds good together and suddenly I'm off and running.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 11:32 AM , Bella said...

Hi Kristen, congrats on the release of All Fired Up! It looks hawt, and I definitely see your inspiration.

I get inspired by art, music, dance, almost anything. I'm not very creative personally, but I appreciate those who are immensely! If I had to narrow it down to one thing, I would say it is dance. I go watch performances and it soothes the soul and inspires me to be better at what I do (and to exercise more -- such drool-worthy bodies)!

I am on my way to Deviant Art right now to check it out.

~bella

 
On September 3, 2009 at 11:58 AM , ARCyndi/Dr. Cynthia Morgan said...

What a very cool painting. It stirs up a lot of "what ifs".

Good luck with ALL FIRED UP. Don't bother putting me in the book giveaway. I already have the book. It's up next in my TBR list!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 12:05 PM , Kristen Painter said...

Nancy - Inspiration is funny that way, huh?

Bella - You know, I never thought about dance that way.

Cynthia - Thank you!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 12:21 PM , Tara S Nichols said...

A very cool idea, Kristen. I love hearing the story behind the inspiration.

-Tara

 
On September 3, 2009 at 12:25 PM , Kristen Painter said...

Tara - Thanks for stopping by.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 12:30 PM , Missy Lyons said...

Congrtulations on the new release Kristen. How the artwork inspired is just an wesome story. I can't wait to read it too. It's on my TBR pile.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 12:37 PM , Karin said...

Art can definitely be inspiring. I love the cover for All Fired Up.

The 'art' that really speaks to me and captures my imagination is what I see in nature. It's hard not to appreciate the beauty of a great sunset with the Rocky Mountains as a backdrop.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 12:43 PM , joder said...

That is a beautiful painting you posted! And the kinds of pictures I like are those that are bright and abstract. I get so sucked in looking at those.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 12:55 PM , Kristen Painter said...

Missy - Yay! I love hearing AFU is in someone's TBR pile!

Karin - Nature is some of the best art around.

Joder - Abstract can really inspire because they can be anything.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 1:00 PM , Laurie Cooper said...

Like many, I get inspiration from everywhere. And I'm also particularly fond of the arts. But I think what resonates the strongest are things important to me, connected to me. For instance, I have a son with a genetic abnormality, so doing a story involving genetic manipulation was thrilling.
I'll have to check out the art site you mentioned when I have time to play. lol
Congrats on the book release! I love the second chances take. (And I have the book.)

 
On September 3, 2009 at 1:08 PM , Kristen Painter said...

Laurie - Thanks for buying All Fired Up!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 2:23 PM , Priscilla Horn said...

Kristen, thanks for sharing your artistic/inspirational journey for All Fired Up. Creativity lies within each of us, and I read somewhere that there is a 45-minute window of opportunity each day that encourages us to cultivate that spark. When I can't think of anything to write on a blank white page, I can turn to a blank white canvas and cover it with oil paint or acrylic paint to get the imagination working! (I'm looking forward to reading your newest Work of Art!)

 
On September 3, 2009 at 2:38 PM , Kristen Painter said...

Priscilla - I love that you're painting now! I think that's just awesome.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 2:54 PM , Nikki Duncan said...

Hi, Kristen! Welcome to HOR. The book sounds awesome.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 3:51 PM , ddurance said...

I love Luis Royo's art!

www.luisroyo.com

Deidre
deidre_durance at hotmail dot com

 
On September 3, 2009 at 3:58 PM , Kristen Painter said...

Nicki - Thank you for the welcome.

Deidre - He's another great one!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 4:55 PM , Jessica said...

Wow, cool pic! Thanks for sharing how your idea came about. And very cool about the artist letting you use it. :-)

I would say normally that music will inspire ideas in me, rather than paintings/photos, but if I saw more of them I'm sure I'd get inspired too. LOL

 
On September 3, 2009 at 4:58 PM , Kristen Painter said...

Jessica - Music definitely helps me set a mood, so in that way, it inspires me too.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 6:34 PM , L.K. Campbell said...

Congratulations on your new release, Kristen! Wishing you many happy sales.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 6:52 PM , Kristen Painter said...

Thanks, Lucinda!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 7:58 PM , Sharon M said...

I love art but I can't say that one particular piece has ever inspired me. I usually get my inspiration from music, tv shows, and lately... the tons of books I read.

I also read a lot of children's books to my son and their artwork can be inspiring: from the simple drawings of Mo Willem's pigeon books to Paige Miglio's artwork in Rick Walton's Bunnies on the Go.

I think it's great that you could take such an awesome painting and turn it into a story!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 8:25 PM , Kristen Painter said...

Sharon - thanks for stopping by!

 
On September 3, 2009 at 8:49 PM , MarnieColette said...

Thanks for stopping by -- I love it when I learn about where an author gets inspiration for a story.

The art is very nice - actually its something I find amazing which is a rarity for me.

 
On September 3, 2009 at 10:29 PM , Kristen Painter said...

Thanks, Marnie! It's been a fun day.

 
On September 4, 2009 at 4:10 AM , D.D. Scott said...

Hello, Kristen!

D. D. Scott here!

Love the art piece and how it inspired you. And can't wait to read your book!

Art also makes my muses tick. I gravitate toward those funky antique/vintage signs w/sassy retro women saying things like 'I haven't had my coffee yet - don't make me kill you' and 'amazingly enough I don't give a sh!$#@t'...LOL!

My heroines thrive on that kind of wise-cracking power.

Also, I really love art glass, so I always have unique pieces in my office. Not sure what they do to my 'what if's' but I sure love lookin' at 'em! LOL!

Thanks for sharing what makes your muses dance on the page (and on your book covers to!).

Sexy, Sassy, Smart Inspiration Wishes --- D. D. Scott
http://www.DDScott.com
http://twitter.com/ddscottromcom

 
On September 4, 2009 at 6:46 AM , Kristen Painter said...

D.D. - I hope you enjoy reading the book as much as I enjoyed writing it.

 
On September 4, 2009 at 8:28 AM , Gena Showalter said...

Pictures inspire me, too!! And I love the one you have!

 
On September 4, 2009 at 9:22 AM , Kristen Painter said...

Thanks, Gena! Sometimes cookies and icing inspire me too. ;0)

 
On September 4, 2009 at 12:03 PM , Maria Geraci said...

Inspiration comes to me from so many places. I'm a visual person, so pics are right up there. I can't wait to read All Fired Up!

 
On September 4, 2009 at 12:21 PM , Eliza March Writes Red Hot Romance said...

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. The greater the art, the greater the inspiration. We see it then we write the words. :-)

 
On September 4, 2009 at 9:16 PM , Elissa Wilds said...

Kristen, awesome cover! I can't wait to read the book!