Friday, September 17, 2010

Sweet Dreams

After the Summer theme ended in my sketchbook, I started on Sweet Dreams. Sweet being not so much sweet as a little on the scary side. Sleep has been a bit of an issue at this house. I'm sure it is with all parents, especially parents of multiple kids. When one is sound asleep, the other is restless and if both are sound asleep it's likely that I'm not sleeping well because I'm expecting someone to wake up. Sleeping more lightly tends to result in some pretty messed up dreams. Vivid as hell and sometimes frightening.

 Sweet Dreams title page. Pen.

Starting this section reminded me of the most vivid bad dream I can remember from my childhood. There were balls of tangled string gliding down tight strings and coming towards me like they were going to catch me. In retrospect that sounds pretty lame for a scary dream but for some reason it was terrifying at the time. It made an impression because I can still clearly see these balls of chaos.

 Chaos and anxiety balls. Pen.

Thinking about my childhood dreams brought me to my next sketch. My oldest daughter often wakes up in the middle of the night and comes into our room. Sometimes she's scared, sometimes she just needs a cuddle. She used to sleep 10-12 hours straight so I often wonder what could be making her wake up. Perhaps it's a family of wee monsters talking too loudly.

 I curse those argumentative monsters for waking up my daughter. Pen and pencil crayon.

My dreams tend to be heavily influenced by what I read or watch on TV. Sometimes the scary dreams are hampered by a TV or movie character playing a role, making it ridiculous and unbelievable.  How can I take a nightmare seriously when Tyra Banks is telling me to go down that dark alley? I drew a few skulls and illustrated in a couple of different ways. On this spread my frightening dreams about death are illustrated it in a whimsical way.

 Skulls spread. Pen and pencil crayon.

 Skull left.
Skull right.

I used a set of very soft pencil crayons to colour in my skulls as well as the monsters under the bed illustration. Because I left a blank page next to the monsters and coloured the skulls after, it left the nicest impression on the blank page. Ghost-like and fragile. It wasn't intentional, but as one of my favourite design instructors in college would say, it's a happy accident.

 A happy, ghostly accident. Pencil crayon impression.

My last illustration in this section is of scary faces. I don't know how often I've told my husband about a dream and I say something along the lines of 'it was you, but your face was different' or 'this happened but I couldn't see the person's face'.

 Dark faces. Watercolour and pen.
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