I'm pretty much self taught regarding art, and am trying to get better.
I mostly make art of things that I picture in my head, usually as an impulse. Usually regarding anatomy and lighting I tend to not use references as I prefer to build upon what I already know, rather than using an outwards source. Typically I don't even sketch out what I plan on drawing, I just get straight to drawing. I've made art this way for a long time now, I think.