Artist Q&A: Do you paint in your sleep?

In this continuing series, I'm going to answer an important question that is more about the sub conscience mind of an artist, rather than practical facts of how-to be an artist. Hope you enjoy a peek into my mind!

Question: Do you paint in your sleep?

I think about art a lot. It might be a bit of an obsession. I’m beginning to think that I have allowed it to replace most of my conscience thinking hours. I’m not sure if this is healthy, but at least I know I don’t have room to obsess over unhealthy ideas. So in a way, painting in my sleep has replaced hypochondria or the need for a perfect home or the worry about what tomorrow might bring. Hmmm...some trade off there!

I don’t stop at brush to canvas. I think about the business of art. I think about writing about art. I think about all the masters living and past that have brought art into this world. I think about my children’s laughing as big strokes of colors. I think about how old buildings with paint peeling are really just art. I think about memories and ideas and how they relate to art. I think about using something discarded on the side of the road as art...in fact just yesterday as I was driving home from Baltimore I noticed all the plastic bags stuck in the bare branches of bushes along the median of the highway and thought it was art in the most unexpected form.

I wasn’t born with synesthesia, but I think after years of training my heart and mind I have begun to connect everything back to art. Every memory, every sound, every sunset, every bug that walks the earth...they all become a correlation to the art that’s on continual play in my mind. Sounds become colors and stories become textures. In one way or another everything, absolutely everything, becomes an idea for another work of art, even if I only create it in my head.

So, do I paint in my sleep? Probably. Probably.

Do you paint in your sleep?
XO, Kellee


  1. I sure do! Loved this post Kellee. You're a brilliant writer.


  2. Thank you so much Amira, that means a lot to me!

  3. I think I am starting to paint in my sleep! Ever since I decided to go down this path of trying to become a professional artist, I am obsessed, like you are Kelly. I've bought books but can't find enough time to read them because I'm on Pinterest and IG studying other people's work. I'm starting to see everything-every face, every still life--as a potential painting. I wondered if I could every get back the passion in high school that I had for making art, that was killed by design school. But it IS coming back, slowly but surely. My only problem is my own physical health. I live with debilitating chronic pain every day. Some days are better than others. Fatigue is bad too. I'm trying to push myself, but I can only do so much. That's what's so completely frustrating to me. I want to be in my studio all day every day, but physically can't. But that's when I lay on my bed and read about and look at art, so it's not as much wasted time as I think. Thanks for letting me write my own blog post on your blog, Kellee! I'll stop now.

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  5. I have just read this( after scrolkling through loads of your words) and had to laugh. A few months ago, l had started a rather large painting and was thinking that l had bitten off, more than l could chew, as they say. I went to bed still thinking about this painting. Woke up in the morning to find l had not only painted all the sky but all the buildings too!!!! very well painted as well. I have not done it since but it was funny and quite scary at the same time!! Lynda


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