Although I have been familiar with Richard Avedon's work for a number of years, it was only recently that I became aware of his In the American West project. I had seen many of the pictures before in magazine's and compilations of his work, but it wasn't until I got a copy of 'Avedon at Work, In the American West' by Laura Wilson did I really understand the relevance of the pictures together as a whole. Reading about his working style, why he was photographing the subjects he did, the way he undertook the whole project including the importance, and attention to detail of the final print, has been hugely inspirational to me. It made think hard about what I photograph and more importantly what is important to me to photograph.
Other influences, can pop into your conscience out of nowhere. The current episode of 'Film' on the Framed Network highlights Belgium portrait photographer Jan Scholz. I'd never heard of him before the weekend. Its interesting to see how he's used social media, FlickR, Facebook etc to get his work out there. I like his pictures and style of shooting and the way he seems to flick almost randomly from format to format on a single shoot to get a different aesthetic. This is something I've never considered doing but will try now.