Tuesday, September 15, 2015

How to Start Sketching Your Dream

If you think it would be fun to sketch a dream, but don't have a clue how to get started, this post is for you. Here's a simple way to give it a go.

  1. Think about your dream. Don't try to interpret it, just keep the narrative in mind. In this approach you'll be guided by your unconscious. Each step will lead to the next.
  2. Start doodling on a piece of blank paper with a light colored marker. Don't pay a bit of attention to what you're doing.
  3. When you feel you've doodled enough, use some stronger colors to emphasize some sections of your doodle. This is when I added the areas of solid red and black to  the example above. I layered a couple of colors in the red section while I waited for the color to feel right. Then the intensity of the red felt as if it needed to be balanced by filling in the shape near the bottom of the page with black.
  4. If any of the shapes suggest something to you, put in some details that make that suggestion clear. In this example, the inner shape suggested to me a body falling into an abyss so I gave it some facial features and hands. Then the hands began to look like birds, so each one got an eye.
  5. Now the illustration wanted something that felt lighter, so I began to decorate it with the squiggly black marks near the top.
  6. Finally, the strong black at the bottom demanded to be balanced by a heavy black line at the top.

The most important part of the exercise is not to judge what you're doing as you do it. If you can let that critical parent/teacher part of yourself go, you'll be able to get into the process and I bet you'll find it enjoyable. It might shed some light on your dream's meaning, too.

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