The question of the day is regarding a knitter who inspires one. Well, three knitters have been very helpful to me, and I would like to thank them here.
I have to give my kudos to Melody Johnson as a great knitter, in that she really opened my eyes to the fact that knitting had changed since I last paid attention to it in the ‘80s. She had some postings about modular knitting and others with simple patterns where she worked out complex colorways. Because of her, I began exploring the world of modern knitting, discovered Knitty, and Interweave Press, and so much else. Thank you, Melody!
If I had to pick a second great knitter, I would pick Stephanie Pearl McPhee, the Yarn Harlot. Her blog is funny and full of life, but her books are full of practical wisdom and have pushed me into greater competence.
Another author who has been immensely helpful is Margaret Radcliffe. Her Knitting Answers Book is at my side whenever I'm knitting because she explains the various cast-ons and bind-offs well, she shows you how to get unstuck when you're stuck, and she gives lots of practical advice for nearly every situation one might encounter.