This may not come as much of a shock to you, but I’m a big time dreamer. Not just at night, when my eyes are closed and my brain takes over, but all day long!
I think I’ve always been the kind of person that was perfectly content being by myself. While my brothers would be off playing basketball or hockey, I would be inside drawing or reading or playing with lego. I think I didn’t mind being alone because I enjoyed being inside my own head, day dreaming. Dreams and one’s imagination are so close to each other that I think (at least for me) that they are almost exactly the same, I think that because I was such a dreamer growing up, my imagination and creative side of my head remained wide open instead of shutting down when I got to high school or into adulthood. There’s a quote by Neil Gaiman that really sums up the connection between dreaming and imagination and creativity:
“You get ideas from daydreaming. You get ideas from being bored. You get ideas all the time. The only difference between writers and other people is we notice when we’re doing it. ~Neil Gaiman”
I think that it’s totally true. Ideas come from thinking, but not just thinking in constructed time but when your mind is wandering. When I was younger I had a paper route that would take me about an hour to walk through each day after school. That hour was almost entirely filled by daydreaming while I walked. I remember dreaming up this scenario in which I found a calculator type device that printed out money, I must have spent a few days dreaming up all the stuff I was going to do if I ever had that calculator!
Every so often, I’ll get a message on Flickr or Facebook from someone that asks me where I get my ideas for concepts. I feel like it’s a bit of a dumb answer to say “my own imagination” but it’s true. Typically I start daydreaming and my mind will just wander from thought to thought, almost like a bumblebee going from flower to flower until I find that one image that fits what I want to do. The best time it seems, for ideas to come into my head is either when I’m just about to fall asleep and there’s a relaxed environment for me to start dreaming or while I’m running. I think my creativity is in hypermode when I’m able to get outside and run, that’s when my brain just turns into “running mode” and can dream away while my legs do their thing, it’s strange but it works! Even in the winter or when the weather isn’t so great, if I just suck it up and go for a walk I feel such a sense of clarity that I start daydreaming within minutes.
I wish that my night time dreams were as vivid and had as much productivity as my daydreaming but unfortunately it seems like I dream of rather boring things at night. Typcially I find that I dream mainly of people or events that occured during my day, but nothing really crazy or whimsical seems to happen in those dreams. I try to analyze them a bit when I wake up but there doesn’t seem to be much there, maybe my brain is just so busy during the day that it goes into boring mode while I sleep!
What are your dreaming experiences like? Do you daydream?