Textures, patterns, structures and small details have always been an inspiration to me. I love to watch things closely, be it flowers, insects or patterns on a painted surface. For many years it has been very popular to incorporate that kind of photos into illustration or design, especially web design. Don´t know really why I haven´t gone in that direction. But photos are a big source of inspiration to my illustrations.
Here are a couple of my photos of wooden planks that reminds me of elephant skin. Old wood can be so beautiful.
And here is an elephant from Copenhagen Zoo.