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Georgina Santiago’s wish has always been to inspire and to be inspired – a concept that is simultaneously intrinsically simple to ponder and challenging to achieve. Yet Georgina makes it seem effortless. On her website The Inspiration Provider she combines simplicity in minimalism with painstaking thought and detail in image, form and colour to create a world that is exactly what she intended. You will be inspired. Inspired to be creative. Inspired to design or decorate. Or just to continue to peruse and admire the beautifully composed pages and projections of her creative mind.
Tell us a bit about your website, The Inspiration Provider, and how it all began... 
It all began with a personal and private tumblr page on which I started to preserve ideas in the run up to my graduate collection. At that point I was studying fashion branding in Amsterdam. I was getting a lot of inspirational input so I felt the need to preserve the things I came across, creating a selection of images that I was really moved by, chosen without really thinking much... just by instinct. I started to analyse the collection of images to find a common factor, and find the element that most interested me. This process is actually what made my graduate collection personal and authentic. I found it really interesting to see how the inspiration actually came from other artists’ creations.
After a while, I decided to make my tumblr public because my friends were asking to see it, and it so happened that other people found my curating relevant somehow, something I did not expect at all. I had always been really interested in trends, and at that point I made the decision that I wanted to focus my career on art direction, styling and trends instead of design. So I came up with the idea of analysing the collection of images on a daily basis to create small bits of inspiration in the form of mood boards and colour palettes.
Your work can be seen from both perspectives: art and fashion. There is a creativity and aesthetic that – if one had to choose – can put your work into either category. Do you feel that fashion and art can comfortably coexist?
Yes, sure. I don’t think that fashion is art literally but it certainly shares something. I think every creation is an accumulation of influences from other creations, so for example a piece of art can inspire a piece of clothing. A sculpture, a piece of furniture, a book, a pair of shoes... all of these can share the same starting point of inspiration, that is what makes creativity so interesting.

You studied fashion design here in Barcelona. At this point in your career, would you call yourself a fashion designer or an artist? (Or both or neither?) 
I studied fashion design, and I could be an artist. But now I would define myself as a creative director and trend analyst. I realised that I am more interested in the beginning of the process – the concept and the inspiration behind it – and the end of the process – the communication and presentation of a product.
You just collaborated with Metal in issue 33 on the Dior Haute Couture story, ‘Surroundings’. What was the inspiration behind these mood boards? What connects all the images?
It was a really interesting exercise because it was like researching in reverse. The idea was to search for pieces of art that had something in common with the Dior clothes and speculate over what the pieces of art had that could possibly have inspired the Dior house to create them: to relate Raf Simons’ creations with other creations with which they could coexist. 
Both your website and the Metal story are very minimalist. What do you like about this aesthetic? Do you think it is important to stick to simplicity?
If you want to communicate a message, I think it is important to eliminate any noise around it in order to make sure the message is clear and not misunderstood. A lot of images I choose portray really abstract concepts; that is why many are kind of minimalistic: to create a powerful and direct visual impact.

The images you choose tend to vary a lot from fashion portraits and clothing to miscellaneous objects and spaces. Where do you look for these images? What sparks a new ‘mood’ and how do your ideas flow from that initial point?
The feed of images come from everything around. It could be from other websites or magazines that may have done an interesting editorial, or from the portfolios of creatives I like to feature... the only rule I follow is that it has to be something aesthetically innovative.
For the mood boards, I have three starting points. The first is that I have an image that I feel stands out above the rest, and I research to find something else that relates to it. If there is nothing else, then it is not relevant enough. The second way is finding a similar idea that is repeated in different creations, so I start to analyse and research more about it to see whether or not the relationship is coincidental. And the third is that sometimes I find really interesting one-of-a-kind colour palettes or combinations of materials. I like to create a universe around them. It all ends up as small bits of inspiration; bits of ideas for the future. 
Focussing on the “aesthetically innovative”, there is very little on your website that reminds me of the past. Even if there are images that evoke the past, they are always assembled in such a way that they become something almost futurist. Would I be right in saying you see inspiration as something constantly evolving? What parts do past, present and future play in your work?
Yes, totally. At the end what I try to do with my research is to find the bits of the present that are already looking like a possible future. It is kind of an archaeology of the future; looking at the past and the present really carefully and analysing them to speculate about what is yet to come.

them to speculate about what is yet to come. It’s one thing being a trend analyst and another being a trend follower. Have you always had a distinctive style or do you give in to seasonal trends? Would you say that both are important to an extent?
Yes, I think that both are important, but I think that style is something that mutates as well... so I think that I have a distinctive style but it is not always going to be the same and has never been equal. Also, I think that in a way the seasonal trends one follows are the ones that create his or her style. 
What are you currently working on? 
I am currently working on really different projects for brands and magazines, as well as working on and planning the next steps of The Inspiration Provider, after our last installation at the Internet Age Media weekend. It is a really exciting moment for the project. We are looking to engage an audience and have a much more personal connection to them. 
What does the future hold for you? 
Once, I said that my aim in life was to be inspired and inspire others. This is actually why The Inspiration Provider began. I really want it to be my future, to continue working on amazing projects with amazing people and to keep learning.

Amrita Pal
Poncho Paradela

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