When I say "inspiration", I don't necessarily mean observing a design, liking an element of that design, taking it, and incorporating it into a design you are working on.
To me, inspiration means absorbing an experience (which could be anything from a good design, enjoying the museum, a song or the noise of the subway), allowing the experience to fill you with the drive to create, and then creating something that you came up with yourself, based on the positive (or negative) energy that the experience provided you.
Inspiration is a muse, it's not an tangible idea.
At least that's the way I see it.
Written in New York. © 2013