This has nothing to do with illustration, but just an interesting experience I thought to share.
I’ve always found sleep and dreaming fascinating, and (maybe because of my interest) I often have interesting experiences during sleep. I had one such “interesting” experience this morning (though it was more annoying and frightening at the time) and am wondering if anyone else experiences this!
Occasionally, while I am dreaming, I will suddenly become fully conscious– different than a normal lucid dream in that I feel like I am “awake” rather than just conscious, even though dream stuff is still going on. It will always begin by suddenly being unable to open my eyes in the dream, no matter how hard I try. From there I start to panic in the dream, and it turns to me wanting to wake up very badly but being unable to move any part of my body both in the “dream” and in real life.
After struggling I will occasionally be able to burst my eyes open slightly, and I will even view things in my real room such as posters on the wall and the ceiling fan. An extreme drowsiness will pull me right back into sleep, where the process will start over 4 or 5 times before I finally thrash around the covers and become un-paralyzed and awake for good.
I am aware of “sleep paralysis,” and am guessing that what I experience is some odd form of it, but it feels more like trying hard to wake up with paralyzed eyes, than being fully awake with paralyzed limbs. I have noticed that it almost always happens when I sleep on my back, because I am inevitably staring at the ceiling when I finally can open my eyes.
I have heard various myths about demons and incubi that are more prone to attack whilst one sleeps on their back, and I can imagine how such myths begin if that position of sleep does cause sleep paralysis!
Have any of you guys experienced sleep paralysis or some other strange sleep phenomena? Maybe it’s time to create an illustration about it… though who could do it better than Fuseli’s “Nightmare”?