Two things in life I know, you can't take it with you and you can't do it all. Time is not on your side even if you can do it real fast. Art takes time for someone to do it. Think about it, we are not blessed with Bill Murry's Groundhog Day (go watch the movie).
This is the old guy talking. If you are a younger artist you can still apply this but it hurts more. Something to do with frontal lobes, lol! Older folks can look back and regurgitate experiences especially the things they did well at. This is quite an art arsenal. You young folk will have to open your eyes to where you are at, be adventurous and experimental. You will go through many changes to find your sweet-spot. You have tendencies, taste and preferences added to your affiliation with the times. That is the things your age group seems to think about. There are a lot of patterns that effect our makeup as an artist.
I always think of art as something for the house related to the interior design or the architecture. You might have a different perspective. That perspective becomes the realm from which your art flows. Say a comic-book artist, we all know the story is way bigger than could fit in one book because they are serial adventures. The characters come to life partly in your head and mostly when ink hits the page. Or greeting cards or sci-fi spaceships and scenes. The realm extends with your efforts and becomes the source of self inspiration, you know, the what's next thing.
As you all know I advocate Open Source art tools. GIMP, Inkscape, My Paint and others. I also recommend video tutorials because other artist have this show-n-tell thing going on. There is nothing like downloading them off YouTube, watching them a few times to "get it down". Another tool is Google or Yahoo picture search. Type in a search word and peruse but don't steal. Don't look too hard, just glance and go. The mind is funny and remarkable in how it takes in and handles information. It also slices, dices and makes Julian fries. That's what happened to my pet potato Julian. Anyway, put the pictures of ideas you like in a folder and use a picture viewer to review them. Just do the slide show thing or click through them, even better with your favorite music playing in the background. That distracts part of your mind and allows stuff to slip past your attention. Or it enhances the "ambiance", makes the ideas stronger. Don't forget to get away to do nothing, rest and be disinterested. Go play golf, baseball, kick sand at the beach, be tech free. Get ready, the urges are coming, so get a notebook to record ideas, a sketchpad. I life with several wire bound notebooks. I scan them into my PC and do the peruse thing. ooh, what a rush.
This all goes into the process of an artist, the part outsiders don't see or understand. The secret life of artist would make a good book, lol.