A wine term meaning a "sense of place." It's the geography, the geology, the composition of the very earth that ultimately affects the character of a particular grape.
The same could be said of a bicycle frame.
The central coast of California has some of the most dynamic geography of any place on the planet. The push and pull of the tectonic plates has created some of the steepest slopes in North America. Meanwhile, humans' need for resources has carved out access into these mountains. In one ride from the shop door you can ride through multiple geologic and climatic zones. These rides keep me on my toes and greatly inform the bicycles I build.
When considering influences, you cannot discount those you ride with. The ones who push you to be a better rider, the ones who show you that sneaky route that's been under your nose for a decade, the ones that pull you out of your routine to go explore new (to you) terrain.
Let's consider this a journal of all those influences.