To seek praise for one's self is to deny equality to the whole of humanity. My ideas, my vision, they are not my own; they are an accumulation of my learned experiences and personal interests. This is not to deny the self, but to understand that the self is nothing without the whole, just as the whole is nothing without the collective self.
Those that I call inspiration, that which has been of influence, they are just as important to my artwork and my thought, as I perceive myself to be. Without Van Gogh or Ansel Adams, John Muir or the philosophers of Ancient Greece, the Age of Enlightenment, or the Existentialists, I likely would have never came upon the view I hold of this world. Just as Vincent may have never became a famous ghost, had it not been for his brother Theo, or for the oppressive bourgeois society he was born into. And, just as Ansel may have never became the father of the landscape photograph, or Muir, the grandfather of Nature's words, were it not for the foresight of President Theodore Roosevelt to claim such land as Yosemite as eternally protected, forming the National Parks Service. A deed that has ensured the safety of our primitive wilderness for generations to come. We all owe what we are to the collective thought of humanity's past. And should a person find one's self in solitude, from birth till death, that one should still be grateful for the trees and plants, the clouds and sun, for providing a reason for thought to exist.
We are all made, everything in all of existence is made, from the same ancient star dust...