If you’re going to be anywhere near Slidell, Louisiana this Saturday, I’m going to be giving a presentation on creativity that is free and open to the public. The topic is “Dreams and Creativity: How to Enhance Your Art through Dreaming.” The presentation will be hosted by the Artists Galleries de Juneau, located at 2143 First St. in Slidell. That’s Saturday, July 11th from 1:00 to 3:00 pm.
The talk will cover the physical characteristics of dreaming, ways to improve dream recall, and how to harness your dreams to create art. There will be a question and answer period after, and I’ll have copies of my book, Write With Fire:Thoughts on the Craft of Writing, available for sale. Below is one little piece of the talk, about the care and feeding of dreams.
Despite what many people believe, there’s no real mystery about where dream imagery comes from. It comes from your own mind, and it reflects the kind of things you put in that mind, the kind of things you think about, and feel about. Dreams come from your fears, your hopes, and your obsessions.
If you spend most of your time dealing with the reality of jobs, family, politics, and paying the bills, then that’s where your dream content comes from. And such mundane dreams, which make up most of what any person dreams about, are not well remembered. It’s the weird and the strange that we remember.
A lot of art is about seeing the world in some new way, some unusual way. If you want your dreams to help you with your art, start feeding it some unusual things. Watch TV shows and movies that you don’t usually watch. Read books you don’t usually read. Take some risks.
Dreams also come from things you are emotionally invested in. Read and watch stuff that makes you uncomfortable. Push your own envelope. If all you experience are those things that make you feel safe and protected, then how can you expect your dreams to help you create. Feed your head some weird stuff. That will feed your dreams, and, just maybe, your art.