Every good animator has something that inspires them, and is constantly being re-inspired.
While surfing this morning, I experienced an interesting inspiration. There were groups of children on summer vacation taking life guard camps at the beach. Instead of watching for waves behind me, I was watching them run around, gleeful despite the fact that it was 8 am, laughing and pushing each other about, falling in a heap, then scattering. They would be told to swim so they would go charging into the water screaming, then flailing around until they got over the cold shock, then splashing one another or body surfing until the teacher ordered them to swim around the buoys out past the break.
They instantly got serious. Some were quite competitive while others fell complacently behind like it was a chore. As soon as the task was over, their attitudes would quickly change back to playful frantic energy.
It was funny to watch. It would have been a blast to animate.
I remember the reason I wanted to get into animation was from inspiration from the original Jurassic Park movie. It came out when I was a freshmen in high school, and I was blown away by the fact that computers could turn something extinct alive. I knew I wanted to somehow become involved in that magic. The scene where they were chased in the field was particularly inspiring to me. But there have been many more moments since.