On Inspiration

‘Inspiration is a farce that poets have invented to give themselves importance.’
— Jean Anouilh

‘Ideas for gadgets for the disabled were coming into my head so fast they seemed to be arriving from somewhere outside of me, beamed down by an unremitting force. I had little control over them, or their flow. I would wake up in the middle of the night. A blinding flash of an idea would rouse me from my bed and I’d rush down to my workshop to have a go at it before the inspiration dimmed.’
— Trevor Baylis

‘That was the Alka-Seltzer moment, the moment when the tablet hits the water and begins to fizz.’
— Trevor Baylis

‘Vision animates, inspires, transforms purpose into action.’
— Warren Bennis

‘To see a world in a grain of sand, and heaven in a wild flower; to hold infinity in the palm of your hand and eternity in an hour–is inspiration.’
— William Blake

‘Those who have changed the universe have never done it by changing officials, but always by inspiring the people.’
— Napoleon Boneparte

‘It isn’t that inspiration doesn’t exist, but it comes only with writing.’
— John Braine

‘Inspiration may be a form of superconsciousness, or perhaps of subconsciousness––I wouldn’t know. But I am sure it is the antithesis of self-consciousness.’
— Aaron Copeland

‘Genius is one percent inspiration, ninety-nine percent perspiration.’
— Thomas Alva Edison

‘I believe in intuition and inspiration; at times I feel certain I am right while not knowing the reason.’
— Albert Einstein

‘Just don’t give up trying to do what you really want to do. Where there’s love and inspiration, I don’t think you can go wrong.’
— Ella Fitzgerald

‘When inspiration does not come to meet me, I go halfway to meet it.’
— Sigmund Freud

‘Better beware of notions like genius and inspiration; they are a sort of magic wand and should be used sparingly by anybody who wants to see things clearly.’
— José Ortega Y Gasset

‘One can be instructed in society; one is inspired only in solitude.’
— Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

‘A moment’s insight is sometimes worth a life’s experience.’
— Oliver Wendell Holmes

‘You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.’
— Jack London

‘A teacher who is attempting to teach without inspiring the pupil with a desire to learn is hammering on a cold iron.’
— Horace Mann

‘I don’t believe in inspiration. I believe in work, because while one works one’s creativity is opened.’
— Giacomo Manzu

‘Confidence imparts a wonderful inspiration to its possessor.’
— John Milton

‘Talk of inspiration is sheer nonsense; there is to such thing. It is mere a matter of craftsmanship.’
— William Morris

‘Observation capitalizes inspiration.’
— Alex Osborn

‘The glow of inspiration warms us; it is a holy rapture.’
— Ovid

‘And Archimedes, as he was washing, thought of a manner of computing the proportion of gold in King Hiero’s crown by seeing the water flowing over the bathing-stool. He leaped up as one possessed or inspired, crying, “I have found it! Eureka!”.’
— Plutarch

‘While I take inspiration from the past, like most Americans, I live for the future.’
— Ronald Reagan

‘I have found that sitting in a place where you have never sat before can be inspiring.’
— Dodie Smith

‘Just as appetite comes by eating, so work brings inspiration, if inspiration is not discernable at the beginning.’
— Igor Stravinsky

‘Action always generates inspiration. Inspiration seldom generates action.’
— Frank Tibolt

‘Inspiration is a guest that does not willingly visit the lazy.’
— Pyotr Tchaikovsky

‘The mediocre teacher tells; the good teacher explains; the superior teacher demonstrates; the great teacher inspires.’
— William Arthur Ward

‘It is all about technique. The great mistake of this century is to put inspiration and creativity first.’
— Vivienne Westwood

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