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02/17/04 | Candy Store

I had a really bloody odd dream, last night. It was somewhat lucid. I found myself in a candy store, and Mom was there, and so was the manager dude, who, for some reason, resembled Juan from Cielito Lindo. (And he owns that business, too.) Oddly, I was myself in younger years, as a child of about 7-years-old. The store was arranged in a way not too unlike a Cracker Barrel. Sitting next to the service counter was a wooden stand. It had wooden boxes suspended on its branches, tilted downward. The box that caught my eye was filled with gumballs. I snatched a bumpy, retarded-lookin' white gumball from and quickly stuffed it in my mouth like a thief. No one seemed to notice. I should've known it was a dream, right then.

Next thing I remember, I had to go to the bathroom (which I found to be true when I woke up), so I went in search of one. There were these grand, refined and glazed wooden doors that I went through. Beyond the doors was a very luxurious hall. I saw two lovers in there, whose identities I'm not familiar with. I traveled until I found the end of the hall. At the end was an iron staircase that zigzagged upwards. There was space under the staircase, and I saw two treasure chests under it, and a square hole in the ground in front of one of the chests that was as black as night. The chests looked just like a lot of the "Secret of Mana" treasure chests, if they existed in reality. I attempted to open up the closest chest, but it somehow fell down into the hole.

This is all I can remember.

02/05/04 | Calvin and Cool Whip
I finished my 15-minute imagination session, sometime earlier today. It didn't seem all that productive, all in all, but I know every little bit helps. Again, I let it begin with the first image that popped into my head. This time, it was a car tire. I had difficulty focusing on this subject, so my mind wandered to other imagery. Nothing concrete, though. From circles to stickmen to three-dimensional bug-eyed aliens. I did settle on an image of Calvin (from Calvin and Hobbes), however.  The same image I imagined, yesterday. It was as if I were staring down at him from, say, his tree house. And he was looking up at me with a blank expression. He was wearing his usual clothing, except with the unzipped blue jacket you sometimes see him with. I held this image for a few moments, and then my imagination assumed the role of my mental camera; it zoomed down to Calvin and behind the back of his head. But his head changed the instant the new perspective settled. I saw it now in a greater detail than you usually see Calvin drawn, almost true to reality in some ways, and it was in full color. My imagination was led elsewhere, shortly after. (I can probably draw the initial appearance of Calvin with reasonable detail, at this point, but I'm going to run through a few more visualizations repeating his figure before I try to draw him. This will be an excellent test to prove just how effective visualization is as an aid to drawing.)

So I took a shot at using my imagination on a fresher subject: my JaCkinbOx character. (For those of you not familiar with him, he's basically a jack-in-the-box drawn in an anime-like style.) I based this visualization on one of my most recent drawings of him (of which I'm most content with), and attempted to animate him. I couldn't seem to focus well enough to change his facial expressions with clarity. But I did manage to follow one of his hands pretty well. My vision centered on him slapping his hand on a surface (even with sound effects). I froze his hand once it hit the surface and tried to dissect it. It turned translucent and I had black lines rap around the bases of his finers and thumbs, thus giving his (fingerless) hand an almost square-like shape. I rotated the hand in its present state, studying it from all angles. I mentally made it "fatten up" in the areas where it was presumed inaccurate. 

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