Instagram inspiration for your art that won't lead to copying! Some non-painter accounts to follow for inspiration from outside your usual places.

In last week’s post I wrote about how sometimes the places we find our inspiration don’t necessarily help us develop our own work in its full uniqueness.

Sometimes they lead to copying, however unintentional, and sometimes they don’t lead to the authentic, unique art that only you can make.

With that in mind, I thought today I’d share some of my favourite Instagram accounts for painting inspiration that are not the accounts of other painters.

I want to demonstrate that inspiration from outside our own area can really enrich and develop our work in sometimes surprising ways.

You’ll notice how I’m looking beyond the initial ‘wow that’s lovely’, to find inspiration in certain aspects of the images like composition ideas, or colour palettes, or distribution of values.

Perhaps you’ll find some new accounts to follow…

{Click on the titles to open the accounts in a new window. You don’t have to have an Instagram account to see them.}

Daily Overview {@dailyoverview}

This account is all about the earth seen from above {and who can resist that?}. What I love most is the ones that look like abstract paintings. It blows my mind how the planet makes its own perfect art without even trying, and then sometimes I find a beautiful image only to discover it’s an oil spill or some other manmade horror.

It seems wrong to find beauty in such destruction, and at the same time I think being an artist is about finding beauty in the most unlikely places. These photos show me possible compositions and colour palettes, patterns and shapes; their way of showing a new perspective is just mesmerising to me.


Travel Escape {@travel.escape}

There are so many travel accounts out there, I’ve become quite picky. 😉 I love this one because of the compositions and use of negative space, apart from the obvious gorgeousness of the locations, and also the fact that they’re not jarringly over edited. I look at these and my mind converts them into abstracts or abstract landscapes. I sometimes use them as a starting point for paintings, without actually painting what’s there.

Travel Escape

Elizabeth Pyle {@ehpyle}

Elizabeth has a way with light, for me. That central image blew me away when I first saw it; it reminds me of the Dutch masters and their still life paintings. I confess I’m not a huge fan of the floral accounts, although I understand the appeal. They just don’t do it for me. But I’ve been following Elizabeth for a while and I love how she sees through the camera; such simplicity, and different views each time too.

Elizabeth Pyle

Luca {@luchitopres}

Mostly coastal, and often of this dilapidated wooden structure, I can’t get enough of these photos. I haven’t yet painted from one of them but I do see the influence of those lines and the distribution of values showing up in my recent work. I love the strong palette, and his photos tend to have very inspiring compositions.


The Walking Drone {@walkingdrone}

Cornwall! So plenty of coastal photos, many from above, although much closer than the Daily Overview images so a different perspective. All of these below inspire me towards potential abstract paintings, and of course there are some of my beloved boats {well, kayaks in this case} too.

The Walking Drone

AKA Light Blue {@akalightblue}

I don’t know the name of this artist, but I love her digital paintings more than any others I’ve seen. They are often reminiscent of landscapes, with flocks of birds regularly showing up, and I learn a lot from the bold layering of colours and the subtle details. Digital art doesn’t appeal to me at all to make myself, but I find it to be a great way of making me consider layering in new ways.

AKA Light Blue


Where do you find inspiration outside your main area? If you’re on Instagram, what are your favourite non-painter accounts for art inspiration? It’s always great to expand ideas beyond our usual boundaries, so please share in the comments!