Drawing a Dream

Vivid dreams

I have vivid dreams pretty frequently. I’m not sure with what they are correlated. They could be related what is happening around me: a book I am reading, a movie I watched or a feeling with which I am wrestling.

For a long period of time, I would wake up shortly after my dream and write it down. I got one of those space pens that can write in zero Gs. I found that when I wrote my dreams in my journal above my head with a regular pen, the ink would seep away from the business end, and I could not see what I wrote when I really woke up.

Nowadays I wait until I am fully awake and write down what I remember. I miss the deep dreams in the middle of the night, but I remember the early morning ones. That’s Ok, all my dreams in a given night seem to be variations on a theme. Besides, they are much more legible than those I wrote down while I was half asleep.


I’m sure there are theories that posit where “the mind’s eye” mostly resides in the brain; input from many different areas probably coincide somewhere to activate the same part that lets me see images from my retina. All I know is that my dreams activate some kind of picture-sensitive area in my head that enables me to see as vividly as I see when I see with my eyes.

I have always wanted to be able to copy images that appear inside my head onto paper. That is really hard to do. First of all, the images in my head – this is so hard to explain – have an omniscient vantage point. As soon as I put a mark on a sketchpad, it doesn’t match up with what I remember of the image.

Last night’s dream:

“There was bowling. The lane was in the middle of a stubbled field and everyone had to bowl from far away. Some of the younger team members were able to pitch that distance. I wasn’t. Somehow, a bowling ball came in the other direction and destroyed something that I couldn’t see.”

My picture of my dream

I did a quick sketch of the scene.

sketch of my dream of bowling alley in a field

Although the drawing is closer to my mind’s eye viewpoint, the watercolor below is not a bad rendition. I still have to work on the field and the colors, but it translates fairly well.

watercolor painting of dream of bowling alley in a field


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