When I started cardmaking I CASE'd too. Nothing I ever made looked like what I used for inspiration. I can't copy if I tried. I am glad that is not a requirement in the card making world because I would flunk.
I still use a lot of ideas for inspiration. Right now I have a Martha Stewart ad staring at me typing this. The ad has little die cut rats. Now, I am thinking of die cutting some rats.
I raise rats.
I am terrible at the Distress look. I can do it but it's not like what everyone else is doing. I really was frustrated. My brain would freeze. I came to the conclusion a lot of that is because as card maker's we want our items to look as good as the stamper's we are admiring. Then add that kind of pressure with posting in the cyber world. No wonder brain freeze happens.
I am not good at Vintage either. I love it. I do my own style of vintage.
My Mom was over at my home a few weeks ago. My Mom can do vintage so well her items go for hundreds of dollars. So, there is more pressure, lol.
My Mom was talking about my creations. She said my vintage was so unusual. I thought "Here she goes!" "Time to game!" ROFL. Then she said "I keep looking at your cards and your artwork. I keep trying to recreate it." "I can't figure out how you do it."
I must have stared at her open mouth for thirty minutes, lol. She told me she was getting really frustrated because she admired a lot of my techniques. She felt like a kindergartner. No offense to kindergartner's who are very talented.
Moral of the story. Do your own thing.
Another tip spend a couple of evening watching You Tube videos on vintage techniques your interested in.