For today’s prompt of “Sky” the first thing that came to mind was simply staring into one. Those moments when you pause and think about absolutely everything at once, yet truly nothing in particular at all. The glorious little moments spent not worrying over things that are happening in this moment, but imagining a moment far grander just beyond those clouds. It’s such a peaceful and wonderful feeling when I take the take to truly dream. Since I don’t paint people or make selfies, my proxy to illustrate this mood today is this little Jack Russell Terrier. I often wonder what dogs dream about while lounging in the sun. My own dog Phineas is a sun worshipper and demands to go outside and sit in its glow each time it appears. There, he’ll soon fall asleep for a bit with his leg twitching occasionally as though he might be chasing something. While nightmares are dreams of actually being chased, good dreams are always about chasing after something we love. No doubt for Phineas, it’s something to eat, as he has a rather insatiable appetite. For me, it’s usually always about chasing whatever idea I have in my head at the moment. It doesn’t always form in the way I would expect in my dream, but it’s similar enough to realize it’s the same idea that’s playing out there.
Last night I awoke from a dream where I was lost in a maze of some kind. It wasn’t scary, just concerning enough to jostle me awake for moment. I remember thinking in the moment how much I wanted to go right back to sleep and restart where I left off so I could actually solve the puzzle. But, as we know, dreams have a strange way of not always working like that. When I went back to sleep, I actually slept so soundly that I can’t remember dreaming at all. This evening, Philippe told me he awoke from a dream last night as well. Apparently at a much different time as neither of us noticed the other waking up. In his dream, he was back in school and was told he had to write an essay of some kind by hand. He’d prepared his essay and it was perfectly written, but as he was about to turn it in, the instructor informed the class that they should not write in the margins. Looking as his essay again, though the handwriting was lovely and exceptionally rendered, the text did indeed extend into the margins and he was informed by his instructor that he had to do it over. Though this jostled him awake as well, he said it wasn’t particularly frightening either. Yet, it’s fascinating to consider what these dreams are actually trying to tell us.
Between all of the daydreams and the dreams that come in the middle of the night, it’s often overwhelming to attempt to understand them all. I usually don’t quite understand the exact meaning, but I’ve learned that dreams don’t reveal to us what’s actually there, but instead, give us a wonderful hint about what’s missing in our lives. For my own dream of a maze, it’s most likely about a clear sense of direction. I’m still trying to figure out what I want to even be when I grow up, after all, and that can mean getting a bit lost. While I want everything to happen just as I envision it, I realize I have to make some choices along the way as to what really matters most. With regard to Philippe’s debacle with margins, I can only guess it has to do with the same thing we all struggle with at times. That moment when doing something wonderful is opaqued by a strict set of rules that suddenly call everything into question. It’s not an actually scary moment, but it makes us question ourselves, which is always a rather scary thing to do indeed. While I do think my evening thoughts provide most of the insight I’m likely looking for, I have to admit to adoring my idle thoughts during the daytime most of all. When I’m awoken in the middle of night by some odd story my mind has recently spun, I know it’s just a direct result of an adult trying to rationalize those wonderful childlike thoughts caused by days spent dreaming.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Yellow Ochre, Leaf Green, Opus (Vivid Pink), Cobalt Turquoise, Cobalt Blue, and Terra Cotta. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with black ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Send me a note with a link to this post, and I’ll add it to my shop!
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Creator of Doodlewash®, founder of World Watercolor Month (July), World Watercolor Group™, and host of the Sketching Stuff Podcast. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!