I made multiple travel plans for the beginning of 2018 during the Cyber Monday deals since flights were affordable. Travel is my healthy addiction, and I can’t help it, even though I know it helps my creative work.

Why do you enjoy to travel so much, a friend of mine who has some travel phobias asked me. It’s not only about putting my toes in the sand on a gorgeous beach, which everyone enjoys, I told her. When I travel, I do take some time to unwind, but the real reason I make so many plans is because I want to be inspired. Because I’m always inquisitive about what’s around the next corner or down the road, I find that I can never sit still for very long anywhere. I’m an avid traveler who loves design.

For some people, that could sound exhausting, but for me, it’s exciting. Traveling is more about stimulating my intellect than it is about taking a vacation, most of which is motivated by my enthusiasm for design. I’m always looking for new things to see. I have to have both travel and design since they are connected for me.

hotel nimb in Copenhagen

The pinnacle of creativity is expressed via art, and I find it incredibly motivating. In any new city, I’m up for a trip through the museums. Witnessing the works of renowned painters is amazing. With every brushstroke, color scheme, and sculpting curve, there is something to be learned from them. I appreciate the thought, feeling, and labor that went into each piece.

Paris’s Musee Lorangerie

When I can, I try to promote regional artists. Sometimes I spend $10 on a street sketch or watercolor, but I’ve also spent more on original paintings or drawings I find in tiny galleries or at park displays. Praise and encouragement for artists are satisfying. My preferred method of recalling the memories from that adventure is by purchasing a piece of art. Once I get it home, the artwork becomes a permanent part of my life.

Montreal’s St. Amable Avenue

The opportunity to experience so much inspiring architecture is one of my favorite benefits of traveling. Another reason I prefer to walk or bike through a city rather than renting a car is to see the interesting buildings, structures, and bridges that the city has to offer.

public library, city of New York

Australia’s Federation Square in Melbourne

London’s Tower Bridge

If I know I’m going to visit some magnificent homes or structures, I can stroll for hours. A slower pace that I manage gives me more time to observe the external features of homes as they emerge at each curve. I just can’t get enough of stairs, shutters, window boxes, and hardscapes.

Sacramento, California

I’m a designer solutions student. I’m continually researching the finest floor designs to take advantage of views and natural light, as well as the best ways to work with sloped terrain, pipelines, and electrical wires. I take it all in. Traveling allows me to observe the inventiveness of innovators from all around the world, including architects, landscape architects, designers, engineers, and artists.

The stores are there wherever travelers go. I avoid chain or department stores when I travel. Only distinctive, regional craftspeople, and creators who don’t market mass-produced goods are of interest to me. Although I do enjoy a well-curated variety of things, I do look for boutiques or stores that sell items made in the area.

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German city of Munich’s storefront

We are all connected in the current world thanks to the internet. Because of this, I’ve noticed increasing globalization and cross-cultural parallels in stores, hotels, cafes, and bars. It once astonished me how much the brewery outside of Melbourne resembled the one in my hometown of California.

The internet enables us to all share design ideas, which inevitably influences and infuses designs in other nations. I’ve observed a lot of changes while traveling, but I’ve also realized that one cafe can resemble another I’ve seen on the other side of the world rather closely.

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the stockholm market

The unexpected nuances that come to light when traveling are another aspect of travel that I love in terms of design. For instance, I adore it when I check into a hotel or an AirBnB and am given a set of traditional keys. I’ve stayed at hotels with contemporary keys, some of which are so cutting-edge that turning on the lights requires inserting your card into a slot inside the room (clever, it saves electricity!). I enjoy how unpredictable travel can be and how you never really know what you’ll see until you get there. It adds to the appeal.

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French hotel corridor in Nice

Another thing I enjoy photographing is ideas for flooring. In Hawaii, I’ve had the pleasure of walking on the most exquisite river rock installations. In Europe, I’ve seen stunning polished wood floors and stone patterns, and I’ve seen surprising tile installations all over the world, from Mexico to Australia to the Mediterranean. Everywhere I go, I am stopped in my tracks by tile and textiles because the mosaics, patterns, colors, and textures are so captivating.

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Australia’s Queensland is known for its surfing.

I can be inspired by even the simplest things, like a tree stump or a wall mural. One of my summer fabric designs was inspired a couple years ago by this surf wall I witnessed on Oahu.

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Ko Oliana, Hawaii

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Why do I continually making travel plans to new locations? Because I think inspiration comes from taking a chance and putting myself in new situations in distant countries. I could be in the calm of a gallery or museum right now, or I could be somewhere more risky, like a dark downtown street calling me to turn around. I’m always intrigued.

I’ll be traveling to Austin, Texas, Seattle, Washington, Charleston, South Carolina, the Czech Republic, Belgium, and possibly Peru in the fall in addition to returning to Norway in 2018. My list of places to see is extensive and never-ending.

I really believe that if you look for it, good design can be found anywhere, and traveling offers countless opportunities to find inspiration. As I continue my adventure across this vast, beautiful planet, I want to be exposed to as much of it as I can while incurring the fewest expenses feasible. I also intend to share it here.

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