Work Dreams

Lately, I’ve been having these bouts of sleep epiphanies. After a long, hard day of brain twisting, pixel pushing, theory sifting, brand shifting, soul searching work — I’ll hit the hay. Often times still struggling with a visual hitch, or some kind of creative block.

Many recent nights (around — say 3, 4, 5 in the morning) when I should be deep asleep, I’m awakened by the ‘answer’ — or at least part of the answer. Sometimes sending me on a long trail of thought, and productive problem solving. Often times giving me tons of fuel to work through full blown ideas — the ones I had been searching for all day long.

In this horizontal state, I’ve actually been able to work out full graphic layouts, with font selection and multiple layered details; or even written full songs with interworking instruments and harmonies.

Other times — the great idea can come and go in a flash — never to be documented, or even remembered long after I wake up.

This is not a calculated process for me. It’s more of an observation.

In an ever-evolving effort to wrangle good and useful ideas into my life and work, I’m constantly trying to best set myself up to capture them. I keep my tools close. I try to always keep a sketch pad and pen, a guitar, and a digital recorder next to my bed — or within close range.

Although not ideal timing, It does make sense that the mind would work through complex ideas at night, once we alleviate it from the daily bombardment of sensory overload that is (my own) daily routine — bustling city life, our wonderful office-studio with no doors, an ever-flooding email inbox, etc.

I’m sure many people in the creative industry have similar experiences. And as we all know, good ideas can’t be manufactured. There’s no formula that always works. They need to be worked through and many factors aligned to have them make sense. This alignment sometimes happens when you’re least expecting it. So be ready. Be ready to capture those fleeting moments of brilliance.

– Matt Hanemann, Creative Director