How many of you out there, use actors and actresses as inspiration for characters you write? In my current project I don't have a direct inspiration for my female lead, though I have drawn some physical inspiration from pictures of women of her ethnicity. My male lead in my mental production of my story is being played by Blair Underwood (TV/movie actor.) I went through and watched various bodies of his work, from shows to a few movies, and really watched his facial expressions, mannerisms, speech patterns and cadence. Now, I've left plenty of room for the readers imagination when it comes to character description, giving general things like eye color, skin color, physique, and a few things like full lips and thick eyebrows. But I don't think a police sketch artist would draw Blair Underwood from my descriptions. This leaves enough for the reader to imagine their own ideals for this character to make their own mental picture, something that may look totally different from my inspiration. I usually do this for at least one character I am writing about, if not all of them, if I seem to be running out of inspiration.