1) Frida Kahlo: I relate to her so well. We both have health problems that can make life difficult for us. She had to endure so many surgeries and had several days of bed rest. To keep sane and occupied, she painted. Her self portraits express the both the physical and emotional pain she endured.
2) Henri Rousseau: Why Henri Rousseau? Sometimes he gets a bad rap. They call him a Naive Artist and think that many of his paintings are a bit childish. The thing that I admire about him is that he, like me decided to develop his artistic skills later in life than many other artists. I like how he just put himself out there and critics be damned.
3) Leonor Fini: I discovered her when I took a class on Surrealism when I was in grad school. I love her dreamlike style and how her figures have feline qualities.
4) Leonora Carrington: Like Frida Kahlo, Leonora has been through a lot of horrible things and experienced a lot of heartbreak. I like how she expresses this in her images.
5) Edgar Degas: My favorite works by him are his pastel drawings. I love to use pastels, so when I go to a museum to see his paintings, I get as close as I possible can to them so that I can study his pastel strokes.