83 Inspirational Quotes for Creatives

Looking for some inspiration or motivation? Check out our comprehensive list of the quotes that motivate us, encourage us, and help us grow.

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Inspiration comes from many places, and you never really know when it’s going to strike.

Sometimes, what will really get those creative juices flowing (or provide you with the drive to complete a project) is a good inspirational quote. 

If you’re looking to ignite that creative spark, check out our curated list of interesting motivational quotes from some of history’s greatest minds.

Inspirational quotes for students in creative industries

“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.”

- Arthur Ashe

“Stay hungry. Stay foolish.”

- Steve Jobs 

“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.”

- Beverly Sills

“All progress takes place outside the comfort zone.”

- Michael John Bobak

“I still struggle with the same problems as ten years ago. I succeed in small matters but the real goal remains unattainable, even though it sometimes seems palpably close. It is hard, yet rewarding: hard because the goal is beyond my abilities, but rewarding because it makes one oblivious to the distractions of everyday life.”

- Albert Einstein

“Never bend your head. Always hold it high. Look the world straight in the eye.”

- Helen Keller

“Do the one thing you think you cannot do. Fail at it. Try again. Do better the second time. The only people who never tumble are those who never mount the high wire. This is your moment. Own it.”

- Oprah Winfrey

“I have been absolutely terrified every moment of my life – and I have never let it keep me from doing a single thing I wanted to do.”

- Georgia O’Keeffe

“Cherish your visions and your dreams as they are the children of your soul, the blueprints of your ultimate achievements.”

- Napoleon Hill

"Begin by learning to draw and paint like the old masters. After that, you can do as you like; everyone will respect you."

- Salvador Dali

“Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence.”

- Vince Lombardi

“Have you learned the lessons only of those who admired you, and were tender with you, and stood aside for you? Have you not learned great lessons from those who braced themselves against you, and disputed passage with you?”

- Walt Whitman

“Don't part with your illusions. When they are gone, you may still exist, but you have ceased to live.”

- Mark Twain

“When you are offered a seat on a rocket ship, don't waste time asking what seat it is, simply get on!”

- Sheryl Sandberg

“Everyone who’s ever taken a shower has had an idea. It’s the person who gets out of the shower, dries off, and does something about it who makes a difference.”

- Nolan Bushnell

Quotes for artists

"I never look back, darling. It distracts from the now."

- Edna Mode

“Have no fear of perfection, you’ll never reach it.”

- Salvador Dalí

“All great artists draw from the same resource: the human heart, which tells us that we are all more alike than we are unalike.”

- Maya Angelou

“The precise role of the artist, then, is to illuminate that darkness, blaze roads through that vast forest, so that we will not, in all our doing, lose sight of its purpose, which is, after all, to make the world a more human dwelling place.”

- James Baldwin

“Art is my life and my life is art.”

- Yoko Ono

“Every artist dips his brush in his own soul, and paints his own nature into his pictures.”

- Henry Ward Beecher

“He who works with his hands is a laborer. He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman. He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist.”

- St Francis of Assisi

“Art is not a thing, it is a way.”

- Elbert Hubbard

“Art is to console those who are broken by life.”

- Vincent Van Gogh

“The greatest use of a life is to spend it on something that will outlast it.”

- William James

“You can design and create, and build the most wonderful place in the world. But it takes people to make the dream a reality.”

- Walt Disney

“Don’t wait for inspiration. It comes while working."

- Henri Matisse

“How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live.”

- Henry David Thoreau

“Artists are the gatekeepers of truth. We are civilization’s anchor. We are the compass for humanity’s conscience.”

- Harry Belafonte

“Art is a line around your thoughts.”

- Gustav Klimt

“Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things.”

- Ray Bradbury

“The artist’s world is limitless. It can be found anywhere, far from where he lives or a few feet away. It is always on his doorstep.”

- Paul Strand

“Don’t think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art.”

- Andy Warhol

“Literature adds to reality, it does not simply describe it. It enriches the necessary competencies that daily life requires and provides; and in this respect, it irrigates the deserts that our lives have already become.”

- C. S. Lewis

“Any fool with steady hands and a working set of lungs can build up a house of cards and then blow it down, but it takes a genius to make people laugh.”

- Stephen King

“If I create from the heart, nearly everything works; if from the head, almost nothing.”

- Marc Chagall

“To finish a work? To finish a picture? What nonsense! To finish it means to be through with it, to kill it, to rid it of its soul, to give it its final blow, the coup de grace for the painter as well as for the picture.”

- Pablo Picasso

“Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent. And don’t bother concealing your thievery - celebrate it if you feel like it. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: ‘It’s not where you take things from - it’s where you take them to.’”

- Jim Jarmusch

“If a man devotes himself to art, much evil is avoided that happens otherwise if one is idle.”

- Albrecht Dürer

“Every artist dips her brush into her own soul, and paints her own truth into her pictures.”

- Datura

“I was asked to act when I couldn't act. I was asked to sing 'Funny Face' when I couldn't sing, and dance with Fred Astaire when I couldn't dance - and do all kinds of things I wasn't prepared for. Then I tried like mad to cope with it.”

- Audrey Hepburn

“The one thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and live only as you can.”

- Neil Gaiman

“There's something to be said for failing. It's not the failure you feel, it's the failure that people project when something disappoints. You're back to ground zero, where there's no expectations, and that's where I like to be.”

- Kevin Smith

“Art should be something that liberates your soul.”

- Keith Haring

“I paint flowers so they will not die.”

- Frida Kahlo

“I don’t think about art when I’m working. I try to think about life.”

- Jean-Michel Basquiat

“Art is an adventure into an unknown world, which can be explored only by those willing to take risks.”

- Mark Rothko

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Quotes for leaders

“I quit being afraid when my first venture failed and the sky didn't fall down.”

- Allen Neuharth 

“In any creative industry, the fact that others are moving in a certain direction is always proof positive, at least to me, that a new direction is the only direction.”

- George Lois

“Without ambition one starts nothing. Without work one finishes nothing. The prize will not be sent to you. You have to win it.”

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

“You will find men who want to be carried on the shoulders of others, who think that the world owes them a living. They don't seem to see that we must all lift together and pull together.”

- Henry Ford

“Success is neither magical nor mysterious. Success is the natural consequence of consistently applying the basic fundamentals.”

- Jim Rohn

“A good leader can engage in a debate frankly and thoroughly, knowing that at the end he and the other side must be closer, and thus emerge stronger. You don't have that idea when you are arrogant, superficial, and uninformed.”

- Nelson Mandela

“It is no use saying, 'We are doing our best.' You have got to succeed in doing what is necessary.”

- Winston Churchill

“If you want creative workers, give them enough time to play.”

- John Cleese

“There are two kinds of teachers: the kind that fill you with so much quail shot that you can't move, and the kind that just gives you a little prod behind and you jump to the skies.”

- Robert Frost

“We're so engaged in doing things to achieve purposes of outer value that we forget the inner value, the rapture that is associated with being alive, is what it is all about.”

- Joseph Campbell

“Management is efficiency in climbing the ladder of success; leadership determines whether the ladder is leaning against the right wall.”

- Stephen Covey

“Restlessness is discontent and discontent is the first necessity of progress. Show me a thoroughly satisfied man and I will show you a failure.”

- Thomas A. Edison

“Failure after long perseverance is much grander than never to have a striving good enough to be called a failure.”

- George Eliot

“When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals, adjust the action steps.”

- Confucius

“Whatever your life's work is, do it well. A man should do his job so well that the living, the dead, and the unborn could do it no better.”

- Martin Luther King, Jr.

“The only man who never makes mistakes is the man who never does anything.”

- Theodore Roosevelt

“I have seen how leaders rule by intimidation. Leaders who demonize and dehumanize entire groups of people often do so because they have nothing else to offer. And I have seen how places that stifle the voices and dismiss the potential of their citizens are diminished: how they are less vital, less hopeful, less free.”

- Michelle Obama

“When you encourage others, you in the process are encouraged because you're making a commitment and difference in that person's life. Encouragement really does make a difference.”

- Zig Ziglar

“Courage is more exhilarating than fear and in the long run it is easier. We do not have to become heroes overnight. Just one step at a time, meeting each thing that comes up, seeing it is not as dreadful as it appeared, discovering we have the strength to stare it down.”

- Eleanor Roosevelt 

“Power is of two kinds. One is obtained by the fear of punishment and the other by acts of love. Power based on love is a thousand times more effective and permanent than the one derived from fear of punishment.”

- Mahatma Gandhi

“We can let circumstances rule us, or we can take charge and rule our lives from within.”

- Earl Nightingale

Inspirational quotes about creativity

“Creativity doesn’t wait for that perfect moment. It fashions its own perfect moments out of ordinary ones.”

- Bruce Garrabrandt

“Passion is one great force that unleashes creativity, because if you’re passionate about something, then you’re more willing to take risks.”

- Yo-Yo Ma

“Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.”

- Mary Lou Cook

“Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine, and at last, you create what you will.”

- George Bernard Shaw

“There is no doubt that creativity is the most important human resource of all. Without creativity, there would be no progress, and we would be forever repeating the same patterns”

- Edward de Bono

“The creative adult is the child who survived.”

- ​​Ursula Le Guin

“The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”

- Sylvia Plath

“A creative man is motivated by the desire to achieve, not by the desire to beat others.”

- Ayn Rand

“The truly creative mind in any field is no more than this: A human creature born abnormally, inhumanly sensitive. To him... a touch is a blow, a sound is a noise, a misfortune is a tragedy, a joy is an ecstasy, a friend is a lover, a lover is a god, and failure is death. Add to this cruelly delicate organism the overpowering necessity to create, create, create so that without the creating of music or poetry or books or buildings or something of meaning, his very breath is cut off from him. He must create, must pour out creation. By some strange, unknown, inward urgency he is not really alive unless he is creating.”

- Pearl S. Buck

“I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it's a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope. Which is what I do, and that enables you to laugh at life's realities.”

- Dr. Seuss

“To be creative means to be in love with life. You can be creative only if you love life enough that you want to enhance its beauty, you want to bring a little more music to it, a little more poetry to it, a little more dance to it.”

- Osho

“Creativity is basically a feminine process. I'm convinced that we have in our soul, everybody, this masculine side and this feminine side. So at the end of the day, you always use this feminine creative energy to write or to do any type of art or creativity. So if I see that my protagonist is feminine, it's not more difficult, no. And even when my protagonist is masculine, I'm writing from using this feminine energy.”

- Paulo Coelho

“We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.”

- Kurt Vonnegut

“A creative life is an amplified life. It's a bigger life, a happier life, an expanded life, and a hell of a lot more interesting life”

- Elizabeth Gilbert

“Everything that's created comes out of silence. Your thoughts emerge from the nothingness of silence. Your words come out of this void. Your very essence emerged from emptiness. All creativity requires some stillness.”

- Wayne Dyer

We hope this list of inspirational quotes about creativity has helped ignite that creative drive. And remember, you can always find more inspiration from #MadeinWebflow.

Published

November 17, 2022

Category

Inspiration

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