The best cure I can suggest for insomnia is to relax.  That said, it didn’t work for me.  But when you can’t sleep, sometimes you can decide to accept wakefulness gracefully if reluctantly.  That’s what I did and it’s how I got these drawings.  Because it was the middle of the night and I still held out hopes of returning to bed, I decided not to turn on any lights and consequently I couldn’t see very well.  This still life was lit, nonetheless, by outdoor security lighting seeping into the room through a large window.  But my page was very hard to see.  So all my gestures were big ones.

I had to shade the contours heavily with the pen just inorder to see them.  But I am pleased with the exaggerations that low light compelled me to observe.

This one I did without the benefit of a still life or light.  I just sat in the dark and drew what I was trying to recall in my head without knowing exactly where the lines were falling.  It was like dream drawing.

And still I could not sleep!

In this next one, I tried to remember a still life set up at my studio.  My memory was vague.  There were “two flowers” that I was struggling to place in my mind … the rest of the entire bouquet was a blank!  Almost asleep?

Not quite.

Back to the dark still life by the window, I went and I drew just the crazy bouquet top dreamed into dizzy lines of velvet shadows.


3 thoughts on “Insomnia — a use for it not a cure

  1. and still you draw well – amazing – hope you catch up on the zzzzzzz’s soon

    My insomnia night actually happened a week or so before my posting, but I’m doing
    late night hurricane watch duty now. And wouldn’t you know, I’m very sleepy!

  2. A good way to let go the anxiety of being awake in the middle of night. I Love the second one, so full of light and yet very simple. Yes, I hope you can draw in your dreams next night.

    Insomnia drawing is good practice for the-power-went-out drawing — which so far hasn’t happened! But our hurricane is not finished yet …

  3. Stay in bed, relax into a cozy position, have a pillow support your body while you are on your side, focus on your breath, especially each exhale, before you know it, the sun wakes you up.

    Excellent advice!

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