The other day in class, I was asked to show some of my work, then to explain my influences. Okay, I said, that's not so hard. So I showed the class this painting that I recently completed.
I then shared that Egon Schiele has been a big influence on my development as a painter. The teacher seemed unable to see the influence. He said he was looking for a "direct" influence. He acted like it was a negative thing not to see Egon in my painting, but to me it is a great positive. No, my paintings don't look like Egon's. Because, guess what: I'm not Egon.
It would be impossible to explain how much I love Egon Schiele's work or how much it has inspired and informed my aesthetic. But if you were to say that my work looked like his? I would not be flattered. It's important for each artist to have his or her own style. We ought to be inspired by other artists, but I'm not out to ape someone else.
Here are some examples of Egon's work:
You can find a lot more on google, where I got these images. What do you think of his style?