Recently I was contacted on Twitter by a lovely writer who had seen a photo of my dog Darcy on-line. The photo had inspired her to put a little dog in her Detective novel. I was thrilled that someone was going to imortalise Darcy!
Sometimes when I'm looking for inspiration for a character I will just pick an attribute and google images it. The plethora of pictures that respond to my call are then carefully filtered through and inevitably there will be something I can use. I might even recall seeing an actor in a film who might fit the character I'm creating, then I can look at hundreds of images of them and find the right one.
It is actually amazing how much food there is for our creativity out there.