Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The Thinking Moon

A dream which is not understood is like a letter which is not opened.

I have kept illustrated dream journals, off and on, my whole adult life, and I get ideas for my art from these pages. Typically I use blank books for my journaling, but in January I found a book that has a lined page next to a blank page that says "subject" at the top. I purchased this to use as my dream journal this year. A dream often has one central action, object, or important statement, and this is usually where the message lies (the top dream and image show how I extrapolate the key idea and illustrate it...)

I like taking that one thing and illustrating it and my new book has the perfect format for this. Here are a few of the subjects from my '08 journal with my illustrations. I use simple stuff to draw with - whatever is close at hand - crayons, markers, ballpoint pens, cold coffee (!), and don't worry about rendering, I just go for it quickly. And since there is a line at the top of the page, I write the subject with my old school girl script, like a penmanship exercise. Why? I don't know, it feels deliberate, I guess. That is not my real handwriting! To write like that does slow me down though, which is sometimes a good thing.

Funny to see these images all in a row, seemingly random, but of course for me, loaded with information. I know an artist who works inside a grid system, taking dream images like this and shrinking them to fit into 1" x 1" blocks to create a page full of tiny painted squares. He uses watercolor, and the resulting works are comical and strange.


artslice said...

These made me laugh out loud, my fave: 'Big fat ass'. The lavender crayon a close 2nd. What a great idea, I'd like to try this myself. I have used ideas from dreams in the past (in art school) and my work definately did not look like anyone else's!!

tangled sky studio said...

i have many unopened letters-what am i waiting for! thanks for visiting my blog and for leading me to yours with such an inspiring post.
i'm actually working on a "dream bed" painting right now....isn't that odd?

Martha Miller said...

Hi Brenda

Glad I made you laugh! Dreams are often made of funny stuff!

Martha Miller said...

Hi Tangled Sky

A bit of synchronicity! I would think that encaustics could be a great place to play with dream imagery. All the layers and implications thereof...