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Dreaming in Paint



"You're living the dream!"

"Dream life"

"Never give up on your dreams."

"Make your dreams come true."

"Never in your wildest dreams."

These type of comments are cliches that few people actually take the time to truly consider. There is much to consider. What dreams are you talking about? The ones you have at night while asleep, or the daydreams we have when we should be doing something else? It's important to realize not all dreams are good. Some are outright nightmares. Others simply are would not be a good thing in reality. Yet, in most cases we are encouraged to "chase" our dreams...as if it is an admirable goal. In some cases that might be true, but when I consider the dreams I have had throughout my life more often than not they are a pure terror.


Ever since I was a small child my dream life (the one when I sleep) has been a vivid world of mystery and sensory saturation. I have always dreamed in color with all my senses present with an acute awareness of being actively in a dream. I never thought anything remarkable about this. I thought everyone dreamed this way so never mentioned it in any special way other than to comment from time to time that I had a dream. As a young adult I learned that my experience was called lucid dreaming and that not everyone dreamed that way. In fact, most people didn't and some people practiced and studied for years to learn how to do it. I on the other hand don't know how to not do it.


The result has been a wide and varied experience of different situations, many of which most people wouldn't desire for their worst enemy. My dreams have always been littered with themes of war and destruction, death and re-birth, imagery not for the faint-hearted. Many of my dreams have been re-curing and/or episodic, building on and crossing each other.


Recently I had a one of my re-curing and episodic dreams and a series of new dreams. The imagery and color pallet was so compelling. I felt a pull to translate the imagery from these and other dreams from over the years into visual works. I'm calling the series "Dreamscapes". The series began with twelve 10"x10" oil pastel drawings. In addition I have written a poem describing the dream from which each of these images originated. These images and poems have been brought together in a book titled: Dreamscapes Volume I - From pillow to drawing board, a poetic and pictorial exploration of my dreamworld. I am currently awaiting the printed proof to arrive.


I am also translating these images into 40"x40" oil paintings on canvas. So far the first two images have translated better than I could have ever expected. When I began college at CCS I did so as a painting major. I was so deeply in love with painting back then. It was like a dream...but that dream became a nightmare. It's a long and complicated story, but I ended up changing majors and giving up painting all together for many years. Almost 10 years ago I cracked open my paint box once again. The experience has been tumultuous and challenging. But this series broke open a secret room in my heart that I closed off so long ago and once again I find myself dreaming in paint, in love with painting. It's like a dream...literally. I am painting images from my dreams, some of them tender, some of them horrid, all of them saturated in color.


Once the 12 paintings are completed I will compile a Volume II including images of the canvases and 12 new poems, also describing the dreams from which the images originate. Dreamscapes Volume I will be available to order from me for $100. I'm not sure how much Volume II will be yet. That will depend on the number of pages and cost of printing. The images are beautiful, much more palatable than the actual dreams themselves. With this series, I invite the viewer to live my dreams with me. Perhaps you will think twice before assuming a "dream-anything" is really what is good for anyone.


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