As i was thinking about what to write for my speech I was pondering about all my life experiences, asking myself what has shaped who i am? but i found myself jumbled among too many memories and moments that only present a small portion of what has made me become who i am today and to speak only about one of these seemed short ended. As I was thinking i came to the realization that there is a large part of everyone’s life that is often overlooked but so important, it often shapes so much of who that person becomes throughout there life and insists the changes they make in there life. It helps them to grow, mature and refine themselves. From a baby looking to his father to learn to walk and talk, to an (insert something) we as humans instinctively look to others that are older, wiser, smarter, braver, more experienced and so forth. At such a confusing, often unstable age everyone in this room stares into the relm of ‘the real world’ and im sure most of you have started to figure out how shitty this place can be. So at a time where the weight of the world is on our shoulders we must stay true to our instinctive human ways, keep an open mind and fill ourselves with the knowledge of our influences and inspirations. shape our lives based on those who have been battered and broken by the brutality of this world yet still achieved greatness in their professions, careers and within their own minds to push through the crap that is littered throughout our lives and achieve far more greatness, love and happiness.
Weather its football, filmmaking, rugby, makeup, modeling, dancing, painting, writing, drumming and so on, In order to push yourself to the next level of expertise in whatever areas of interest or passion you have it is vital to study, watch, understand and deeply invest yourself into learning the techniques and ways of the people who have mastered these areas themselves throughout there own lives. Living in a world dominated so greatly by social media and the internet the possibilities to scour and search for inspiration are endless, more than ever we have the ability to discover people who are better than we are at what we do and use them as inspiration and drive to work harder and to learn from there abilities. Being able to teach yourself and expand your knowledge on what you love to do is one of the most intellectual skills one can have, and the best way to do this is through the constant seeking of inspiring people and there work (or sport ect). The most beneficial knowledge i have ever received was not from a teacher or a book but from studying the ways in which basquiat so emotively painted a canvas and the way he characterized figures, after simply visiting Brett Whiteley’s studio once and whiteness first hand the richness of the colors he mixed and the elaborate proportions of the figures he drew, my own paintings and drawings made an enormous transformation as i mimicked his techniques and abilities and transferred them into my own work. in my eyes the ultimate goal should be to feel the same sense of amazement and excitement that is insisted into you from these inspiring figures work, performance or skill from your own. By constantly striving for this goal obvious and constant improvement to your skills will always be happening, and it is the basis for turning what might have just been a hobbie or past time into something more than that, something that brings you happiness, serenity and an escape from the struggles in your life, something you can do for the rest of your life, make money from and even at best form a career and ultimately work towards living a life far less ordinary. whoever it is that influences you, they themselves in almost all cases will have spent there own lives researching there own influences work, and constantly striving to be inspired and push there skills to achieve mastery, and of course succeeded. Basquiat who i previously referred to was influenced by the likes of artists in the generations before him such as Pablo Picasso, cy twombly, jean dubfufet, Robert Raschenberg and Rene Ricard. All of these vital influences had a key part in the development of Basquaits style and by comparing there works many similarity’s can be seen. he was able to use there techniques and push them to new levels beyond even his influences abilities to become one of the greatest artists of all time and the first true African american artist immersed in the fine art world, by looking to his influences he was able to create a far gretaer more prosperous world for himself, he went from living on park benches and friends houses selling hand painted tshirts to survive to one of the richest most successful artists of all time. One of my personal favorite writers hunter s Thompson before writing any of his own novels would copy entire books from his favorite writers, he once stated in an interview “If you type out somebody’s work, you learn a lot about it. Amazingly it’s like music. And from typing out parts of Faulkner, Hemingway, Fitzgerald – these were writers that were very big in my life and the lives of the people around me – so yea I wanted to learn from the best I guess.”
Just as important as using your inspirations to push your skills and abilities is using there knowledge, standpoints, approach to situations and ordeals and researching their lives to gain an insight on the minds of these amazing people, adopt and be open to there ways of thinking in order to help yourself grow, become more open minded and in some cases enlightened and be able to live a far more knowledgeable understanding life and tackle whatever it throws at you. As teenagers in the transition to adults we face more freedom than ever and for the first time we have absolute control over our lives. This freedom although exciting can be somewhat daunting and i have found that by do things such as watching documentaries, interviews, reading articles and so on to do with the people that we admire is somewhat liberating and incredibly inspiring. By doing these things not only are you able to gain so much insight to the way in which these people think but also there standpoints, how they reacted to attention, how they lived and treated the ones around them, the list could go on and on. By becoming enticed with the lives of successful, revolutionary people you begin to understand what it takes mentally in order to flourish as an individual and deal with personal and impersonal issues in order to be free to live your life as you please and to pursue your passions with complete confidence and trust in yourself and live a life far less dull. These figures that have reached the highest point in there careers, mindfulness, intelligence and understanding of the way humans and life operates are here to give insight into the crazy, unpredictable, awful and beautiful ways of the world. weather through biographies, films, quotes and documentaries they are here to be studied and learnt from so others alike them can become there best self and reach personal greatness. I have been inspired by countless artists like Andy Warhol, anthony lister, keith haring. Musicians like kurt cobain, de la soul, gang starr, directors like stanley kubrick and quinten tarentino of which I have learnt countless lessons from and gained a far broader view of life, I have grown a love for learning from these people, from there years of hard work, disappointment and success. If you do not allow yourself to be open to new ways of living, creating and thinking then life can become so quickly monotonous. we must continue to push our understanding of ourselves, life, the world ect. and through our influences we can do this easier and faster and live a life avoiding the mundanities and routines that are too easy to be trapped upon and that cause so much grief in our world and be ready and strong for all the negatives that lie ahead and help ourselves to live a greater life in every way we can.
Unlike any other animal on earth we as humans have given ourselves the obligation to find meaning in our lives, we have become too intelligent for our own good and if we lose this sense of meaning we lose a sense of life, it can become a struggle from day to day to live for nothing, with no motivations or aspirations. We must stay inspired, we must. we have to have people to look up to to continue to grow, to be inspired by the meaning they have created in there life and insisted into others lives. Be inspired by the quality of life they have created for themselves by having the ability’s to not only master something they love but become successful, revolutionary people and fight through the issues in their life. Inspire not to become famous or wealthy or rich, but inspire to become like the ones who inspired you, inspire to inspire others and bring meaning to their life as these people did to yours and watch as your life becomes far far less ordinary, and far more filled with joy excitement and love.