Using Art to Capture your Dreams

Vincent Van Gogh said, “I dream of painting and then I paint my dream”. We all have dreams. Sometimes they are when we are sleeping. Other times our dreams are of what we want to accomplish or experience in the future.

Dreams that we have when we are sleeping can be very helpful in our awake state. One of my favorite theories about dreaming is that it represents our most creative state, when random facts, experiences and thoughts are put together to reinforce learning and stimulate new ideas. Dreaming is also thought to reinforce what we have learned the previous day.

Dreaming while asleep helps us to find new paths and think creatively. Using art making to capture the images and ideas we have while we are asleep can reinforce what we are learning internally.

Children and adults alike can benefit from capturing the dreams they have while sleeping into drawings, paintings or other types of art while awake.

Michelangelo said about his Statue of David: ”I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.” He saw David in the marble and his mental imagery allowed him to create it. Visualization is a way we dream while we are awake. Imagining our future in great detail helps us to create the reality in our own lives.

Using art to stimulate our internal creativity and to visualize our future is a powerful exercise for children and adults.

Here are some ideas to get started – no matter what your age:

Use a sketchpad to capture the images from your sleeping dreams. Use pictures, your own drawings, found objects, and collage to reinforce the ideas that come up in your dreams.

If you are helping a child with their dream journal, after they have drawn their dream, take a few minutes to ask them questions about their dream(s):

  • ”How did the dream make you feel?”

  • “What did you learn because of the dream”

  • “What was your favorite part of the dream?”

For those “awake” dreams, create a vision board that you keep out in a place you see everyday. . Vision boards add clarity and make dreams and goals more clear. This is a great exercise for children as well .

  • On a poster board of any size, paste pictures, symbols, words from magazines and other sources onto the board.

  • Use creativity and intention and think about all that you desire from the vacation to Italy to completing that longstanding project.

  • If you are helping a child use a vision board to think about goals and accomplishments ask some questions to get them started that will help them clarify their ideas.

Using art making as a way of capturing our dreams while asleep as well as to dream about our future is not only fun. It will help to increase our learning, our creativity and the ability to turn dreams into reality – no matter what our age.

Have a wackadoey day…and don’t forget to check out our books!


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