Artists and creatives are known to struggle with ideas from time to time. Writer’s block can happen to anyone, regardless of their skill. To combat this, writers like Tolkein found inspiration while grading exam papers, and Maya Angalou advises to never stop writing words, even if they make no sense. Each creative has their different method of harnessing creativity.
Most prolific artists, authors, and creatives find inspiration wherever they can — even in their dreams. From Salvador Dali's The Persistence of Memory to John Lennon’s “#9 Dream,” dreams have a history of inspiring the most creative works of art.
Why Are Dreams Good for Creativity?
Dreams connect information, ideas, and memories, often synthesizing them into interesting new experiences and occurrences. For those who easily remember their dreams, they become a source of inspiration for years.
As many of the most easily remembered dreams are bizarre, fantastical, or otherwise nightmarish, it makes sense that they often result in well-known horror novels, like much of Stephen King’s work.
As an artist or creative, you too can find inspiration in your dreams for your work. All it takes is getting enough rest and some practice recalling and recording your dreams. For insights on which of your favorite novels were inspired by dreams, and how you can leverage your own dreams, check out this infographic below.
Stephen King | WorldofLucidDreaming | BachelorsDegrees | TopTenz | LaTimes | TheCut
How Can I Remember My Dreams Better?
Remembering your dreams is key when it comes to using them for creative inspiration. Some people have difficulty recalling their dreams even just minutes after waking. Therefore, you’ll need to record any dream details as soon as possible. Keep a notepad and pen next to your bed on your nightstand every night. If you dream, write down as much as you can remember immediately after waking up. The notepad will provide a tangible reference to what you’re dreaming about.
Jill Zwarensteyn is the editor for Sleep Advisor and a certified sleep science coach. She is enthusiastic about providing helpful and engaging information on all things sleep and wellness.
Based in Los Angeles, she is an experienced writer and journalist who enjoys spending her free time at the beach, hiking, reading, or exploring new places around town.
She’s also an avid traveler who has a personal goal of being able to successfully sleep on an airplane someday.