About: Self-Portrait No. 4


If you’ve read the stories behind Installment 1 of my self-portrait challenge, you understand that the images portray who I am as a person. Installment 2 provides a bit more insight into my art and the inspiration behind it.

As many of you know, my art is greatly influenced by my nighttime dreams. What many of you don’t know is that I suffer from a variety of sleep disorders. I battle insomnia frequently, but I also, from time to time, experience sleep paralysis and exploding head syndrome (yes, that’s really a thing and no, it’s not really what it sounds like — no exploded heads here). 

Self-Portrait No. 4: Present was inspired by one particular episode of sleep paralysis that I experienced about seven years ago. But more generally, the image is meant to show the subject being present in two states, worlds, situations, actions at the same time, which is not only what happens in sleep paralysis, but also how I view myself as an artist. I have to be present for my dreams in order to create practically in real life.